In Attempt to Stop Losing, GOP Changes Primary Rules
After Republican in-fighting cost Mitt Romney a ton of money in his primary battle and left him weakened heading into the general election, the Republicans have changed their primary rules and schedule in an attempt to not look as bad heading into general elections.
After several states tried to leapfrog each other last year in an attempt to be the first or an earlier primary, the Republican National Committee has limited the first four states, Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada to February. This means those states can’t try to schedule their primaries for January or even December.
The RNC has also prohibited any other states from holding their primaries before March 1. If any state does try to schedule an earlier primary, they will lose most of their delegates. If a state loses delegates, their effect on the nomination process will be limited and candidates may not even spend time campaigning there.
Any state that will hold their primary between March 1 and March 15 can no longer be a winner-take-all state and will have to divide their delegates proportionately. In the past, many states awarded all their delegates to the candidate who placed first.
The RNC will also hold their National Convention earlier, around late-June or early-July in an attempt to shorten the primary schedule to five months. This will also allow the Republican candidate to start raising money for the general election earlier since candidate’s can’t spend money for the general election until they’ve won the nomination.
The RNC is also contemplating where to schedule the 2016 National Convention to try to get an advantage in a swing state. High in the running are Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Columbus, the three biggest cities in Ohio, a crucial swing state. Also in the running are Orlando and Miami in an attempt to drum up support in Florida.
(Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore)