Friday, March 20, 2020

Indiana Delays Presidential Primary, Moves to June 2

On Friday, March 20, Indiana became the latest state to shift back the date on which it will conduct its presidential primary in the face of the threat of coronavirus spread. Governor Eric Holcomb (R) issued an executive order to move the May 5 primary in the Hoosier state back four weeks to June 2.

The change not only buys the state some time to potentially avoid any further fallout from coronavirus, but to implement other elections changes that may increase the voters options and ease of voting. But while the date change buys some time on those fronts, it tightens the window for the process the Indiana Democratic Party has laid out for completing its delegate selection.

It was not just the presidential candidates that were to appear on the May 5 primary ballot. As a consolidated primary, the election also included nomination contests for other federal, state and local offices. Also on the ballot were to be state convention delegate candidates. State convention delegates elected on the May 5 ballot would then have have gone on to the June 13 state convention. In district caucuses there, national convention district delegates would be chosen. And a quorum of those district delegates would then choose PLEO and then at-large delegates.

All of that can still happen with a June 2 primary, but those 28 days now lost because of the primary move are 28 fewer days to certify the election results and credential state convention delegates to the proposed June 13 gathering. That, in turn, affects how, how quickly and when national convention delegates will be selected to the national convention.

These are the trade-offs state parties are having to deal with now, juggling public health concerns with the impact electoral changes have on the carefully laid delegate selection plans made well in advance. Indiana Democrats have to answer the time crunch issues from the change Governor Holcomb made today.

March 20 press release from Governor Holcomb's office on the primary move archived here.

Related Posts:
Indiana Elections Commission Authorizes No Excuse Absentee Voting in June 2 Primary

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