Michigan Joins Herd to Move Up Primary

Jan. 15 date likely to push NH, Iowa races to first week of 2008
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 5, 2007 6:50 AM CDT
Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean, addresses the National Jewish Democratic Council conference Tuesday, April 24, 2007, in Washington. It won't be a summer of love for Dean. Some states...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Michigan's governor yesterday bumped the state primary up to Jan. 15 as part of a national scramble for earlier, higher-profile contests. New Hampshire's primary and Iowa's caucuses are now expected to be moved up to the first week of January. States picking candidates before Feb. 5 face penalties from both parties.

Leading Democratic candidates have pledged not to campaign in those states. If candidates break their pledge, they risk losing delegates they would have won in the states with early primaries.  The GOP is allowing its candidates to campaign in early primary states, but those states will forfeit half their delegates to the convention.