RNC chairman pushes Florida on early primary date

During a trip to Tampa on Wednesday, Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus insisted Florida lawmakers remove their 2012 primary from the early voting window.

Florida moved its 2008 primary up to January in order to enhance its importance in the presidential nomination contest. The state's Republicans were charged half their delegation's voting rights at the Minneapolis-St.Paul convention. Democrats were threatened with a similar penalty but were ultimately allowed full voting rights at the Denver convention.

Washington Republicans have been putting pressure on Florida to move its 2012 primary back out of the January window.

"As far as Florida is concerned, I would encourage the Legislature to do everything they can to abide by the rules passed by both the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee together to make sure we can bring some order into the presidential election process," Priebus said Wednesday after meeting with members of the GOP 2012 convention host committee in Tampa.

"We're doing everything we can at the Republican National Committee to fulfill our promise to try and get presidential primaries on track with some semblance of order," he added, according to the St. Petersburg Times

"One of the things that we did is that we've put together a primary schedule for the presidentials which protects four early state primaries in February, but then moves all the other states out of the February window to a date on or after March 1."

Priebus has already discussed moving the primary with Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R), but wouldn't tell reporters about the details of their conversation.

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