Biden: South Carolina should replace Iowa in the presidential nomination calendar

Biden asked the DNC to move Michigan and Georgia into the early presidential nominating window, and move South Carolina ahead of Iowa.


Josh Morgan-USA TODAY

President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron shake hands at the conclusion of a joint press conference at the White House for a state visit. The Presidents of France and United States will meet about a variety of issues during the bilateral meetings.

Liam Halawith, Politics Reporter

President Joe Biden recommended taking Iowa out of the early presidential nominating window and giving Iowa’s spot to South Carolina for the first Primary election in the country, according to a letter to the Democratic National Committee.

Biden also recommended bringing Georgia and Michigan into the window. His recommendations for the early nominating window consist of South Carolina, New Hampshire, Nevada, Georgia, and Michigan. 

This would kick Iowa out of the first-in-the-nation status it had retained since 1972 when the Democrats started the state’s famous caucus system. Republicans joined Democrats four years later holding their own caucuses. Iowa has led the nation in nominating presidential candidates since it began 50 years ago. 

Now, the Iowa Democratic party is suggesting scrapping the system entirely. The new system proposed by the Iowa Democratic party would require caucus-goers to request a presidential preference card, receive the ballot in the mail, and have 14 to 28 days to return the ballot in person or through the mail. 

This would require Iowa Democrats to pick one candidate for nomination, which scraps the process where representatives of each candidate lobby for voters to join their caucus. 

“This also means that we are proposing the elimination of realignment so that each caucus-goer would express a preference for only one candidate,” Iowa Democratic Party Chair Ross Wilburn said, according to Iowa Public Radio

“Our party should no longer allow caucuses as part of our nominating process,” Biden said in a letter to the committee, according to the Des Moines Register. “We must ensure that voters of color have a voice in choosing our nominee much earlier in the process and throughout the entire early window.” 

Iowa will still remain first on the Republican’s presidential nominating calendar, with their regular nominating schedule in place for 2024. 

Jeff Kaufmann, the chair of the Iowa Republican party that also chairs the national committee in charge of the Republican presidential nomination calendar, said Democrats should keep Iowa’s Caucasus first in the nation. 

“This is the Democrats that are pulling this crap, and I’m telling you right now, they don’t want to play chicken with me. This is pure, progressive, power politics,” Kaufmann told NBC News on Nov. 18.  

During a weekly call with reporters, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley said Iowa should keep it’s first-in-the-nation status in the democratic nominating calendar. 

“It’s been this way since 1972, and Iowa is a unique place where people with little money can campaign for president and get to be president,” Grassley said. 

Iowa’s status in Democrat’s national presidential nominating calendar is still in-the-air. Its fate will come to fruition within the next week as the Democratic National Committee plans to vote this week. 

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