California Dem says state is 'almost a different country politically'

Rep. Scott PetersScott H. PetersDuncan Hunter gets another GOP challenger Hillicon Valley: Facebook won't remove doctored Pelosi video | Trump denies knowledge of fake Pelosi videos | Controversy over new Assange charges | House Democrats seek bipartisan group on net neutrality House Democrats seek bipartisan working group on net neutrality MORE (D-Calif.) argued Tuesday that California should not have moved its 2020 presidential primary to earlier in the year, remarking that the state is a "different country politically."

The California Democrat suggested in an interview on Hill.TV that a candidate who is popular in his state may not have the same popularity in other parts of the country as the party seeks to field a nominee to take on President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Hill's Campaign Report: Democratic field begins to shrink ahead of critical stretch To ward off recession, Trump should keep his mouth and smartphone shut Trump: 'Who is our bigger enemy,' Fed chief or Chinese leader? MORE.

"My problem is that I think California should not have moved up its primary," Peters told hosts Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on "Rising."

"I think California in a way should ask Michigan and Wisconsin, 'What Democrat do you want us to pick? And we'll vote for him,'" he added.

Peters noted that Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe road not taken: Another FBI failure involving the Clintons surfaces DHS cyber agency to prioritize election security, Chinese threats ABC chose a debate moderator who hates Trump MORE won the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election while losing the Electoral College and thus the presidency.

"We are almost a different country politically," he said. "When people say that Hillary Clinton won by 3 million votes nationally — she won by 4 million in California." 

"We're tremendously progressive, we're very experimental, we're very innovative," he said. "I think for us in California and across the country, the priority is to beat President Trump, get a new president who shares our values and our view of government as a productive force for Americans, and to take the Senate." 

California's primary, which was officially moved up in 2017, is set to take place on March 3 next year. The earlier primary date could stand to benefit Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisGabbard hits DNC over poll criteria for debates The Hill's Campaign Report: Democratic field begins to shrink ahead of critical stretch Gabbard, Steyer inch toward making third Democratic debate MORE (D-Calif.) due to earlier momentum from her delegate-rich home state.

The Golden State has played a lesser role in past presidential election cycles, given that its primary came months after the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries. 

— Julia Manchester