Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Kansas is Back in for 2012! But for How Long?

For a state that has rarely been relevant in terms of the presidential nomination process, Kansas sure has haggled an awful lot over the last couple of years trying to become so for either 2008 or 2012. The trials and tribulations of the Kansas legislature during the 2007 and 2008 legislative sessions have been well documented in this space (click on the "Kansas" label at the conclusion of the post for a fuller picture) and haven't been disappointing lately. After the House kicked a photo ID requirement/presidential primary combination bill back into conference last week, the plan for a 2012 presidential primary in the state looked to be left for dead. But yesterday, lost in all the hustle and bustle of North Carolina and Indiana, the Kansas legislature passed a compromise bill through both chambers. The bill now is just a governor's (Democratic Governor Kathleen Sebelius) signature away from making Kansas the first state to frontload its presidential nominating contest for 2012. Of course, the primary (or any future primaries beyond 2012) would have to be included in the budget by the legislature at that time.

Also with the date of the contest set for the first Saturday in February, Kansas could be in violation of national party rules if that first Saturday is before the first Tuesday in the month. [They're already excited at the notion of losing all their delegates in 2012 in Kansas.] This assumes, of course, that national parties maintain the same rules for 2012 that they had in 2008. As we've seen, the RNC has already been talking about reforms for the 2012 primary calendar. So, you're on notice Kansas.

...that is if the governor doesn't veto the bill.

Recent Posts:
The Electoral College Maps (5/7/08)

Identity Politics (Brazile v. Begala)

Primary Day, Part XVI (The IN & NC Edition)


Robert said...

So much for the lessons learned from FL and MI!

Josh Putnam said...

Lesson? What lesson? FL and MI haven't learned anything "officially" yet.

I just looked at the calendar for 2012 and the first Saturday in February is the 4th, just ahead of where the window would open for non-exempt states on the 7th. Nice knowing you, Kansas delegates. This still assumes that the rules will be the same then as they are now. We'll see.

The early word when this bill first started making the rounds was that Sebelius would veto it. I'll be on the look out for any news on that in the near future. The news on the bill passing was mum on the subject.