The Nation reporter says voting order of states 'critical' in presidential primary

John Nichols, national affairs correspondent for The Nation, said Friday that changing the order of states voting in presidential primaries would have a substantial impact on the process as a candidate’s wins in early states like Iowa and New Hampshire are “critical” to "building momentum."

In a Friday interview on Hill.TV’s “Rising,” Nichols commented on outgoing Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom PerezThomas PerezClinton’s top five vice presidential picks Government social programs: Triumph of hope over evidence Labor’s 'wasteful spending and mismanagement” at Workers’ Comp MORE’s recent interview with The New York Times, in which he argued that "a diverse state or states need to be first," rather than the overwhelmingly white states of Iowa and New Hampshire, which have been the first two states to weigh in on the Democratic presidential nomination for nearly 50 years. 

"The order matters because when you are challenging the elites, when you are trying to upset the establishment in the party, having those initial wins is a really critical thing to kind of building momentum and making something happen," Nichols said.

He went on to reference the 2016 presidential primary, in which he said Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersHouse Democrats to keep minimum wage hike in COVID-19 relief bill for Friday vote Sanders slams parliamentarian decision on minimum wage Parliamentarian nixes minimum wage hike in coronavirus bill MORE (I-Vt.) “came from nowhere" to mount a serious challenge to eventual nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocratic strategists start women-run media consulting firm Pelosi top fundraiser moves to House Democratic super PAC Mean tweets may take down Biden nominee MORE.

“He was not even treated seriously in the fall of 2015,” Nichols said. “That strong showing in Iowa, that win in New Hampshire, gave him tremendous moment going forward, and I think it was a big deal.” 

Watch part of Nichols’s interview above.