Joe Biden’s master plan will fail, New Hampshire Democrats promise
President Joe Biden is facing backlash from New Hampshire Democrats over his plan for the 2024 presidential primary.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) on Saturday approved a new primary schedule that would send South Carolina, a traditionally conservative state, to the first race that would determine which candidate would be the party’s presidential nominee.
Democrats say the change will strengthen black voters, an important voting bloc for the party that dominates the southern state Democratic Party. However, the new timeline would rob New Hampshire of its longstanding “first country” status, angering local Democrats who have pledged to fight the change.
New Hampshire’s federal delegation — made up of Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, Sen. Maggie Hassan, Rep. Annie Kuster and Rep. Chris Pappas, all Democrats — released a joint statement on Saturday lambasting Biden’s plan.
“No party committee gave New Hampshire the nation’s first primary,” they wrote. “Granite Staters created this process to put power in the hands of voters and give every candidate a fair chance, regardless of their cash flow or party status.”
Democratic lawmakers swept Biden aside, accusing him and the DNC of pushing “a plan of political expediency,” an apparent reference to the 2020 primary, when his massive win in South Carolina boosted his campaign ahead of important races in other states, despite a weak performance in New Hampshire.
They promised Biden “wouldn’t make it in the end,” adding that they would work to protect New Hampshire’s status and ensure compliance with state law. The New Hampshire Legislature in 1975 passed a law allowing the Secretary of State to move the primary a week before any other state’s election.
“No matter what the powerful in the party or those in Washington think, New Hampshire will once again host our nation’s premier contest as we have done for over a century,” they wrote.
Hassan, who comfortably won re-election in the swing state in the 2022 midterm elections despite fears that a “red wave” could wipe out New Hampshire Democrats, also announced the timeline in a tweet.
“Our First in the Nation primary makes our entire country and our democracy stronger. Regardless of the DNC’s vote, New Hampshire will come first,” Hassan wrote on Saturday. “The DNC’s main proposition asks us to violate our state’s law and jeopardizes the future success of Democrats in our state – it is deeply wrong.”
Under the new schedule, South Carolina would hold its primary on February 3. New Hampshire and Nevada, traditionally the first states, would follow on February 6. Over the next few weeks, two other critical swing states would hold their primaries: Georgia on February 13. and Michigan on February 27.
DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison, a former South Carolina Senate candidate, defended the new schedule during an appearance on MSNBC. The Sunday show with Jonathan Capehart.
“It reflects the diversity of our party. The diversity of the nation but also it reflects our values,” Harrison said.
Newsweek contacted the DNC for comment.