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La. Legislature Votes to Move Up 2016 Presidential Primary

by Meg Barbor

The RLC and renewed Hillary chatter have minds turning to 2016 this week. Never to be left out of a political conversation, Louisiana is among those jockeying for primary position. The state House and Senate sent legislation to Governor Jindal which would enhance the Boot’s position on the 2016 presidential primary calendar. The bill passed the Senate and House with no opposition and will now head to Gov. Bobby Jindal's desk.


House Bill 431, authored by Rep. Tim Burns, would move Louisiana's presidential primary up two weeks from its position on the third Saturday of March up to the first Saturday in March, strategically placing it immediately after what is likely to be Super Tuesday on Tuesday, March 1. 


In 2016, that changes the primary date from March 19 to March 5. As Iowa and New Hampshire can tell you, earlier primaries tend to exert a greater influence in the process.


The House passed the bill 96-0 on Sunday, while the House passed the bill 38-0 on Friday.


In the rare moment of unanimity, state Democrats and Republicans each rushed out statements. The two parties were in agreement on the primary change, proving once again that putting the state's name in lights unites all viewpoints.


"Louisiana's diverse population is a cross section of America. We deserve a place at the table as one of the early primary states that will determine our 2016 presidential nominees," said LAGOP Chair Roger Villere.


Louisiana Democratic Party Chair Karen Carter Peterson called the bill, "an example of how Democrats and Republicans can work together to benefit the state of Louisiana."


"By moving up our primary by two weeks we are positioning Louisiana as part of the all-important Super Tuesday week," she said.


The annual state legislative session ends at 6 p.m. on Monday.

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