Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Kansas Democrats Plan to Caucus on April 14

The Kansas Democratic Party on Tuesday released for public comment the draft of its 2012 delegate selection plan. The cancelation of the Kansas presidential primary has been inevitable for a while now -- both because the state has not held a primary since 1992 and because legislation to cancel the primary has slowly worked its way through the legislature. The question, then, for the two parties in Kansas has not been one of primary or caucus, but when the parties will hold their respective caucuses. More and more state Democratic parties have tip their hands over the last few months and now the Democratic Party in Kansas has joined the list, selecting April 14 as the date on which their delegate selection process will kick off with local caucuses.

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That date coincides with the date Democrats in northern neighbor, Nebraska, chose in their own delegate selection plan. This is a nice, if indirect, nod to the DNC's rewarding of neighboring states that coordinate the dates of their delegate selection events. According to the national party's delegate selection rules, three or more neighboring states that hold concurrent primaries/caucuses after March 20 receive a 15% delegate bonus. Kansas and Nebraska are limited in their options of adding another partner. Iowa will be at the front of the line, Missouri's and Oklahoma's primaries and likely Colorado's caucuses will be on March 6, and South Dakota will bring up the rear of the calendar in June. That leaves Wyoming Democrats, who have indicated an April 7 -- a week earlier -- date in their own delegate selection plan. It should be noted that these are after all just drafts and are potentially apt to be altered based on public comment, in order to get DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee approval or a combination of the two.

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