Iowa Republicans will hold the first-in-the-nation caucuses in 2024, GOP leaders announced Thursday, despite a recent move by the Democratic National Committee that may prevent Iowa Democrats from leading their party’s nominating calendar.
“The Republican National Committee unanimously decided to leave our process alone, which means Iowa will remain first in the nation,” Republican Party of Iowa chairman Jeff Kaufmann told reporters Thursday evening.
Gov. Kim Reynolds, a Republican, thanked Kaufmann for his work with the RNC. She praised the “time-honored tradition” of the Iowa caucus.
“In Iowa, we truly have perfected the art of retail politics, with townhall meetings, where farmers and families and Main Street business owners get to drive the conversation,” Reynolds said.
The decision comes a day after the Democratic National Committee voted to remove Iowa from its guaranteed first-in-the-nation position, instead allowing states to apply to lead-off the calendar.
“Iowa will absolutely be applying to be in the early window and we will look forward to enthusiastically making our case,” Iowa Democratic Party Chair Ross Wilburn told the Des Moines Register on Wednesday.
Kaufmann said the Republican Party of Iowa stands with Iowa Democrats as they try to secure their first-in-the-nation status. He suggested the DNC may take notice that Iowa will lead the Republican primaries, noting there could be “all kinds of problems” if the Democratic and Republican calendars don’t match up.
“This resistance is coming from the national Democrats that don’t quite get that Iowa isn’t flyover country,” Kaufmann said. “I think Iowa Democrats have a chance to still pull this out.”
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