Iowa Republicans: Nevada should move caucus

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 at 4:10 pm | More from The Iowa Independent

Gov. Terry Branstad and Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn want Nevada to move its caucus date from Jan. 14 to Jan. 17, to allow for a week between the Iowa Caucuses and the New Hampshire primary.

Iowa Republicans have committed to a Jan. 3 caucus date, while New Hampshire has not yet set a date. The two are traditionally the first presidential contests and New Hampshire law requires its primary to fall seven days ahead of any similar contest.

Strawn declined to speculate on what may happen with the presidential nominating schedule, but said “the ball to some degree is in Nevada’s court.”

Matt Strawn

“They have the opportunity to move back just three days which will give New Hampshire that window to have their caucuses on January 10,” Strawn said. “And if we can have a January 3 Iowa Caucus, we can have a January 10 primary, I think that serves both Iowa and New Hampshire well because the top finishers in Iowa then have seven days to really enjoy that traditional bounce coming out of the Hawkeye State.”

Terry Branstad

Branstad said he doesn’t think it’s too much to ask for Nevada to move its date by three days, noting it would still be third in the presidential nominating process without potentially pushing the other contests up further.

“I think there’s a lot of people that don’t want to see the caucuses held during the holidays,” Branstad said.

Regardless of what happens, Strawn said the Iowa Caucuses won’t “want for attention.”

“What I do know is there is still an opportunity to make sure we maintain sanity in the schedule where it is Iowa and New Hampshire,” he said.

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