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Rotating Regional Proposal

Reed encourages adoption of Rotating Regional Presidential Primary

News Release
Issued: January 22, 2008

OLYMPIA... Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed today urged the Legislature to send a strong message to Congress: put an end to the current presidential primary chaos.

Reed is urging lawmakers to pass a joint memorial petitioning Congress to organize presidential primary dates nationwide by region starting in the year 2012.

"An organized approach would discourage two-year presidential campaigns that tire and frustrate voters," said Reed. "It would put a stop to the frontloaded nominating calendar that pits one state against another in an attempt to win the most coveted primary date nationwide."

Under the Rotating Regional Presidential Primary Plan, endorsed by the National Association of Secretaries of State, states would hold primaries by region and rotate primary dates each cycle.

Regions would be defined as the following:

  • West: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and Guam.

  • Midwest: Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

  • South: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

  • East: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
In 2012, the West would hold primaries, caucuses, and conventions in March, the Midwest in April, the South in May, and the East in June.

In 2016, the selection process would begin with the Midwest in March and end with the West in June.

Iowa and New Hampshire would still conduct their selection process before the regional selections begin.

"This is simple, common sense," said Reed. "As early as January of 2006 states nationwide became embroiled in a heated battle for an early presidential primary date. Holding primaries by region ensures that our country will not repeat history in 2010."
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Washington Secretary of State
Elections Division
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PO Box 40229, Olympia WA 98504-0229
(360) 902-4180
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