Democrats voted on their primary calendar for the 2016 presidential election on Saturday, The Associated Press reported. 

During a meeting in Atlanta, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) ratified a calendar that begins with the Iowa caucuses on Feb. 1, 2016.

As it was during the 2012 election, the Iowa caucuses would then be followed with primaries in New Hampshire and South Carolina and a caucus in Nevada. 


Other states would be provided with incentives to hold off on scheduling their primaries until March 2016.

Nevada and South Carolina were added to the early primary calendar in recent presidential elections in an effort to give minority voters heavier say in nominating contests. 

South Carolina’s electorate generally contains more African-American voters than either Iowa or New Hampshire, and Nevada is home to more Hispanic voters. 

Leaders in both political parties are hoping to stymie a trend toward early primaries that saw states such as Florida rushing to move up their elections to influence the presidential process. The trend resulted in the 2012 Iowa Caucus being held on Jan. 3 of that year, which leaders in both parties decried as too early in the election year.