Florida Shuffles GOP Primary Calendar, Sets a January 31 Vote

The long-expected move will push other states to vote earlier

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On Friday morning, Florida's presidential preference committee made the long-expected move to hold the state's primary on January 31, Politico reported. Which now means all the other early voting states like Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina will most likely push their votes even earlier. Because, see, they want to keep being special in the GOP nominating process. Why do you think that everyone's always obsessed with Iowa polls? But, as The Los Angeles Times explained this morning, Florida wants to be just as influential, if not more so:

According to RNC rules designed to prevent a chaotic rush during primary season, only Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina can hold elections before March 6.

But Florida, which will play host to the 2012 Republican National Convention, in Tampa, wants to have a more central role in picking the nominee. To achieve that, it would run afoul of the RNC, which will dock it about half of its 116 convention delegates.

But it looks like the backers of the Florida primary move are more concerned about influence than delegates. The St. Petersburg Times quoted former state Sen. Al Lawson of Tallahassee, a member of the primary committee, saying: "It is more important for states such as Florida not to be on the back end, but to be on the front end of these primaries."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.