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Lawmakers Consider Moving Idaho’s Primary to August

Lawmakers will consider moving Idaho’s primary election to August under legislation that was introduced this morning in the House State Affairs Committee. The panel introduced the bill a day after the Idaho Supreme Court rejected the state’s newest map for redrawing legislative districts. The chairman of the affairs committee favors shifting the primary to a later date because it will shorten the general election campaign season. The bill will now go before the panel for a hearing. The primary was moved from August in 1980 and is now held on May 15, which made for a longer general election campaign season. The move created a lot of dilemmas for incumbent candidates who already have a full plate with legislative business, making it difficult for them to raise money and campaign. The bill would return the primary to the Tuesday of the first full week in August, with candidates filing for office from May 21 to June 1. This year, that date falls on August 8th. Another election bill introduced by the committee yesterday would do away with Idaho’s presidential primary in May. Ysursa’s office argues that this contest no longer serves a purpose since both political parties now choose their presidential delegates by caucus.

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