Iowa Democratic Party officials discuss plans of having 2024 Caucus same night as GOP
DES MOINES — Iowa Democrats on Wednesday unveiled a novel way to get around their demotion from the leadoff spot on the party’s presidential nominating calendar: They would still put on the first-in-the-nation caucuses but would be open to withholding the results until after other states have their contests.
Iowa Democratic Party chairwoman Rita Hart says, “We know that this draft delegate selection plan will raise a few questions, but it’s designed to respond to this calendar chaos.”
In early February, national Democratic Party leaders decided five other states would go first in voting for the 2024 Democratic presidential nomination and the dates for two of those early state contests are still not set.
Meanwhile, Republicans in the Iowa legislature have a bill that would require in-person participation in both parties’ Caucuses. Former Iowa Democratic Party chairman Scott Brennan of Des Moines — a member of the Democratic National Committee — suggests litigation is likely if the bill becomes law. “As a practicing lawyer, I would tell you that it raises serious constitutional issues that likely are going to have to be decided by a court,” Brennan says.
Hart says she wasn’t consulted about the bill and doesn’t know how it might impact the Caucus plan the party released Wednesday. “It’s curious to me that the Republicans are weighing in on a party process like this,” Hart says.
Iowa Democrats have held call-in and virtual Caucus gatherings in the past. They are proposing a mail-in system for 2024 as a way to address complaints that the Caucuses are inaccessible to workers who can’t get time off and others who cannot attend on Caucus night.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)