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Iowa Democratic Party leader say they’ll ‘fight like hell’ to keep Caucuses first

DES MOINES — Iowa Democratic Party leaders say they’re considering “substantial changes” to make their Caucuses more straightforward and accessible.

Iowa Democratic Party chairman Ross Wilburn has released a letter to national party leaders, asking that Iowa’s 2024 Caucuses remain first in the presidential nominating process. The Democratic National Committee has made it clear that’s in doubt.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do ahead of us in the next few weeks, but I’m going to fight like hell for Iowa,” Wilburn said during an online news conference, “and I’m going to look forward to making our case before the Rules and Bylaws Committee.”

That panel will meet this summer to recommend which states get to go first in the next presidential election.

“Iowa is a small rural and accessible state. The infrastructure to rebuild the Democratic brand for rural America is right here in Iowa,” Wilburn says. “The DNC, the national Democratic Party, just needs to commit to it and not waste this opportunity.”

Wilburn is arguing Iowa represents geographic diversity that’s important for the party’s prospects across the country.

“If Democrats can’t figure out how to talk to rural voters, then we’re in big trouble as a party,” Wilburn said. “It’s no secret the party’s been losing seats across the country because of a weakened appeal to rural, working class Americans and to maintain the White House and make gains in congress, we can’t afford to ignore this group of Americans and Iowans.”

National party leaders are also saying that states positioned to go first in the 2024 presidential election should have diverse populations, to reflect the Democratic Party’s voting base. Wilburn said as the Iowa Democratic Party’s first black chairman, he will make the case that Iowa has been a progressive leader.

“Iowa has led and the nation has followed when we said that a black man, Barack Obama, could be and should be president of the United States…in saying that love is love and who you choose to marry and start a family with is up to you and the rest of the country followed,” Wilburn said, “and going back to decades before Brown v Board of Education, Iowa said that schools will be integrated.”

Wilburn told reporters he’ll also point to the many candidates of color who won municipal elections in Iowa last year.

Iowa Republican Party Caucuses are on track to remain first in 2024 and GOP presidential hopefuls have been making appearances in Iowa to meet prospective voters.



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