Monday, May 19, 2008

And Off Again: Kansas Presidential Primary Bill Vetoed

Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius today vetoed a bill that would have established a presidential primary in the state for the 2012 presidential nomination cycle (via Ballot Access News). For the second straight year, then, Kansas' efforts to transition to a primary election came up short. Last year, the plan to create a primary and schedule it on the Saturday prior to Super Tuesday failed to make it out of the state legislature before the session ended. This year's version proposed the same Saturday before the first Tuesday in February date, but was hampered by the inclusion of a provision within the law requiring a photo ID at polling places in order to vote.

The quirk in all of this? Well, as I've been pointing out (see here, here and here), scheduling a primary on such a date would violate both major party rules on the matter. At least in terms of the rules as they were constructed for the 2008 cycle. Kansas would have faced losing half their delegates on the Republican side and (at least initially) all of their delegates in the Democratic process. Of course, all this assumes that the same rules from 2008 are used in 2012. With the GOP already advancing one plan aimed at reforming the presidential primary process, it is up in the air as to how the calendar will look four years from now. And that doesn't even include a discussion of what penalties the parties would impose on state violating any reformed rules. The reform process will undoubtedly be arduous enough even excluding the potential sanctions the parties would impose to keep all the states in line.

Speaking of Kansas, the Democratic Party there has told me that results from the weekend's state convention should be online some time tomorrow. I'll be back then with an update on how those 11 delegates were allocated.

Recent Posts:
The Links for 5/19/08: Kentucky, Oregon, Electoral College Ties and More

Nevada Final Tally: 45% of the Vote, 56% of the Delegates

Obama in the Red States: What Mississippi's 1st District Means

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