New Hampshire plans to schedule its Democratic primary election before the other 49 states, defying the Democratic National Committee's guidance to let South Carolina go first
President Joe Biden will buck a century of tradition by not appearing on New Hampshire's presidential primary ballot. The move was made in order to adhere to a rule by the Democratic National Committee.
New Hampshire plans to schedule its Democratic primary election before the other 49 states, defying the DNC's guidance to let South Carolina go first, a plan that Biden himself proposed. If Biden files to appear on New Hampshire's primary ballot, he, too, will be defying the DNC.
In a letter sent to the state's Democratic Party and obtained by outlets including NBC News, Biden for President campaign manager Julie Chávez Rodriguez writes, “While the president wishes to participate in the Primary, he is obligated as a Democratic candidate for President to comply with the Delegate Selection Rules for the 2024 Democratic National Convention promulgated by the Democratic National Committee."
Rodriguez added in the letter that Biden's name will be on New Hampshire's general election ballot in November, however.
“Consistent with New Hampshire law and the Secretary of State’s guidance, the president looks forward to having his name on New Hampshire’s general election ballot as the nominee of the Democratic Party after officially securing the nomination at the 2024 Democratic National Convention where he will tirelessly campaign to earn every single vote in the Granite State next November,” Rodriguez wrote, per NBC News.
While New Hampshire and Iowa are traditionally the first presidential primary voting states, Democrats have criticized those states as not being diverse enough to be representative of the electorate at large.
The Democratic National Committee announced in February that South Carolina will mark the first state in the presidential primary process in 2024, followed by Nevada.
DNC chair Jaime Harrison said at the time that the calendar change was "long overdue."
"It puts Black voters at the front of the process in South Carolina. It keeps Nevada, where Latinos have been building power ... The Democratic Party looks like America," Harrison added, "and so does this proposal.”
While Biden will not be among the listed candidates on the ballot, New Hampshire voters can still write in the president's name, and it is highly likely that he will still win the state's primary.
The deadline to file for candidacy in the New Hampshire primary is Friday.
Biden formally announced his 2024 reelection campaign in April — and committed to keeping Vice President Kamala Harris as his running mate — saying American voters are "in a battle for the soul of America."
"The question we are facing is whether in the years ahead we have more freedom or less freedom; more rights or fewer," Biden said at the time. "I know what I want the answer to be and I think you do too. This is not a time to be complacent. That's why I'm running for reelection — because I know America."
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