With both Iowa and New Hampshire now behind the Democratic presidential candidates, Virginia Tech’s Caitlin Jewitt says it’s on to contests that are more diverse and more like the rest of the nation. 

·        “Iowa and New Hampshire used to be considered king-makers, in that they determined who would be the front-runner in the nomination,” said Jewitt. “Increasingly people are noticing - and the campaigns are calling attention to the fact that Iowa and New Hampshire are not representative of the American population or the Democratic Party.”

·        “Typically, we see the field winnow following Iowa, as candidates withdraw from the race. Given the chaos that happened in Iowa, that didn’t happen this year. In 2020, New Hampshire has jump started this process. On the night of the New Hampshire primary, Andrew Yang and Michael Bennet dropped out of the race. We should expect to see the field continue narrow as the nomination progresses.”

·        “Nevada is next up after Iowa and New Hampshire. Like Iowa, Nevada is a caucus state but one where voters are not as tuned into the primary process as Iowans. We also have a lack of polling in Nevada, making it harder to know what will happen when voters go to the caucuses on February 22, 2020.”

Jewitt has recently published a book on the topic, “The Primary Rules: Parties, Voters and Presidential Nominations” (University of Michigan Press), which illuminates the balance of power that the parties, states, and voters assert on the process.

To secure an interview with Caitlin Jewitt, contact Bill Foy by email, or by phone at 540-998-0288.

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