Primaries May Start Before Christmas

Arizona considering January primary, pushing up Iowa, NH
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 26, 2011 10:30 AM CDT
A bilingual sign announces a polling place in Arizona in this file photo.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – There’s a distinct possibility the 2012 presidential primaries could start in 2011. Jan Brewer is considering holding Arizona’s primary as early as Jan. 31, the Arizona Republic explains, and if she goes through with it, New Hampshire and Iowa are likely to bump their contests to December to keep their first-in-the-nation statuses. The move would cost Arizona half its Republican National Convention delegates, but then, it’s already bucking the parties with its current Feb. 28 date.

“New Hampshire has said, 'If we have to hold our primary in December, we will,'” one Cook Political Report analyst says. “You're not going to beat either Iowa or New Hampshire. . . . They can ruin everybody's holidays.” Arizona is not the only fly in the ointment, either; Florida’s primary is currently scheduled for Jan. 31, though it will likely be rescheduled; current reports have it coming on March 1, 2, or 3, which wouldn’t force anyone else to bump up their date.

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