Friday, September 9, 2011

Missouri House Passes March Presidential Primary Bill

The Missouri House this afternoon passed the House Committee Substitute of HB 3.1 The special session bill would shift the Show Me state presidential primary from the first Tuesday after the first Monday in February to the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March. For our purposes, in 2012, that would mean a move from February 7 to March 6 (Super Tuesday).

The bill now moves on to the Senate for consideration there. Hypothetically at least, a non-controversial bill -- one defined as such based on the fact that a bill moving the primary to March has already been passed but vetoed by the governor for different reasons -- like the presidential primary bill should be able to move through the state Senate. However, there have been roadblocks in the Senate on other bills during this first week of the Missouri General Assembly special session.

As Bob Priddy at MissouriNet points out, a veto override of SB 282 could also move the primary back to March as well. Of course, as FHQ mentioned earlier, that would require the votes of at least four Democrats in the House to pass muster. The Republican majorities in both Houses likely won't want to gamble with the date like that. HB 3 seems like more of a sure thing. this point.

Like Wisconsin, Missouri moved into February for the 2004 cycle and is seeking to move back to March where the primary was in 2000.

1 The substitute bill inserted a clause raising the presidential primary filing fee to the bill that originally just shifted the presidential primary date and made a few other small changes to the state elections law. See more on the implications of the greater filing fee at Ballot Access News.

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