Sunday, May 17, 2015

March Presidential Primary Bill Stuck in Neutral in Rhode Island

The bill to move the Rhode Island primary up a month -- from the fourth Tuesday in April to the fourth Tuesday in March -- looks to be permanently stalled in committee. The Republican-sponsored HB 6054 was "held for further study" after a Wednesday, May 6 hearing before the Democratic-controlled House Judiciary Committee.

That is likely the death knell for this one. It is not unlike the situation in nearby Connecticut, where Republicans earlier this year also sponsored legislation to move the Nutmeg state presidential primary into the first week of March. Those bills similarly faced resistance from majority party Democrats in the state Senate. Connecticut Republicans are considering switching to a caucus/convention system in order to hold an earlier contest more consequential to the Republican nomination process.

In Rhode Island, though, April 26 aligned with the primaries in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania, seems most likely.

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