SC politics: State would keep first-in-the-South GOP primary

December 11, 2013 

August 2011: Susan Dial is excited to see Michele Bachmann step off of her tour bus before addressing the crowd. After her Iowa poll win, Bachmann spent nearly a week in SC.

KIM KIM FOSTER-TOBIN — kkfoster@thestate.com Buy Photo

S.C. would keep first-in-South GOP primary under proposal

South Carolina would keep its status as an early-primary state under proposals to streamline the 2016 Republican presidential primary.

The Republican National Committee is looking at shortening the window for primaries and holding its 2016 convention in June, the earliest since 1948, according to a report by CNN.com. The party wants to end some of chaos from the 2012 primary.

The first four early-voting states – Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada – would continue to hold their contests in February.

To prevent other states from jumping up in that order – and compelling the first four to move their dates even earlier, as they did in 2012 – any state that holds its nominating contest before March 1 would have its number of convention delegates slashed to nine or, in the case of smaller states, a third of its delegation – whichever number is smaller.

If the Florida GOP, for instance, violated the rules and held its primary in February, its 99-member delegation would be cut to nine.

“(T)hese proposed rule changes protect our first-in-the-South presidential primary,” S.C. GOP chairman Matt Moore said in a statement. “I’ve heard from diverse Republicans across our state over the past few months – they fully agree that our 2012 primary process did not serve our party or the presidential candidates well.”

Moore also endorsed “creating a sensible debate calendar.”

From Staff Reports

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