Minnesota and Michigan are seen as a toss-up to jump to the front of the line for presidential primary voting as the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws committee is set to vote on an overhaul of the nominating contest calendar this week ahead of the 2024 election, Axios reported on Monday.
"There's lots of folks in our camp and the same with Michigan," Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party Chair Ken Martin told Axios. "There are only three states in the country that flipped their Legislature into a trifecta [in 2022] and Minnesota and Michigan are two of the three."
The DNC meeting starts on Thursday, and a vote is expected by Saturday, Martin said.
Moving up the vote is considered important, because it would give the state chosen more influence in choosing the presidential nominees and provide more cash, staff, and high-profile candidate visits, according to Axios.
Democratic Party leaders say diversity is a priority after years of New Hampshire and Iowa — two predominantly white states — voting first.
On that front, Michigan is well ahead of Minnesota, although diversity is also growing in the North Star State, especially among younger people.
But Minnesota is known for nation-leading turnout and civic engagement, with top Democrats in a June pitch touting demographics, including a mix of rural and urban areas, high union membership and a large LGBTQ community, according to the MinnPost.
NBC News also noted that the state's relatively cheap media markets and small population would make it a more level playing field for presidential candidates without access to big money.
But Democrats who argue that the early status should go toward building momentum in a battleground state point to a fact that Minnesota has been a reliably blue state in presidential contests since the 1960s.
The desire to alter the primary calendar picked up momentum following Iowa's 2020 disastrous caucuses, which turned into disarray due to tech and communication problems.
Twenty states and territories applied for an early primary spot, with 17 invited to give their pitch to DNC officials over the summer. The current early states — Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina — were required to reapply.
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