The Florida GOP has decided to hold it’s primary a month earlier than previously authorized, thereby throwing the rest of the early states – Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina – into a turmoil due to specific rules.
GOP officials in the early states — New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Nevada — delivered strong denunciations of Florida’s leap-frogging act but were coy Friday about when they will announce the dates of their own contests. Still, it’s easy to work backwards from Florida’s Jan. 31 primary to figure out how the new calendar might play out.
Iowa will hold its caucuses the week before the New Hampshire vote. New Hampshire’s constitution requires it votes a week before any other state’s primary. Nevada’s GOP rules require a state caucus on the Saturday after the New Hampshire primary. And South Carolina will hold a primary on a Tuesday or a Saturday, sometime between the Nevada caucus and the Florida primary.
New Hampshire Secretary of State William Gardner speculated this week that he may schedule a primary in December 2011. Gardner said he won’t announce his state’s primary date until next week “at the earliest.”
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