Biden Nixes NJ Bid to Be First Presidential Primary
New Jersey Democrats will not be among the first in the nation to decide the nominee to run for president in 2024.
The Democratic National Committee is considering significant changes to the order of when individual states hold their primaries, with states that have a more diverse population given preference.
It was on that base that New Jersey Democratic State Chairman LeRoy Jones and Gov. Phil Murphy made their case that New Jersey should be among the first states to vote.
President Joe Biden does not agree.
Biden sent a letter to the DNC this week outlining his priorities, and although he did not name specific states in the letter, he seemed to support the plan expected to be approved by the Rules and Bylaws Committee and the full DNC that would give South Carolina the first primary.
"We must ensure that voters of color have a voice in choosing our nominee much earlier in the process," Biden wrote, "You cannot be the Democratic nominee and win a general election unless you have overwhelming support from voters of color. For decades, Black voters in particular have been the backbone of the Democratic Party but have been pushed to the back of the early primary process."
In March, Jones argued that New Jersey has the kind of diversity the national party is looking for, contained within one of the smallest and most easily traversable states in the country.
Under the plan likely to be approved by the DNC, South Carolina would usurp predominantly white New Hampshire as the first primary state. New Hampshire voters would have their say a week later along with Nevada. Georgia and Michigan would round out the first five contests, according to New Jersey Globe.
Murphy was in Washington, DC, Thursday night to attend Biden's state dinner with the French president. It is not known if Murphy and Biden discussed the primary schedule.
New Jersey's primary date could still be moved up to the second wave of Democratic primaries if the DNC and Murphy remain supportive of a change. It would require legislative approval.