February 5th wasn't good enough for Florida.
The Florida House of Representatives upped the ante yesterday, voting 115-1 to move the state’s presidential primary to Jan. 29.
That would outdo California, which recently set its nominating vote for Feb. 5, and New York, where a bill also setting a Feb. 5 primary date is likely to become law. Florida’s move into January also would threaten to overshadow the traditional kick-off contests earlier that month in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Anything that diminishes the importance of New Hampshire and Iowa is good in my book. The DNC and RNC can threaten to not seat the delegates, but no state is taking those threats seriously. No presidential nominee would tell a state that their input at the convention isn't wanted.
For the Democrats, the dates are as listed below, though New Hampshire will likely leapfrog ahead of Iowa to put distance between itself and the rest of the states breathing down its neck. Granite Staters have an insufferable feeling of entitlement when it comes to the primary calendar. South Carolina can't be happy that Florida is stealing its thunder.
(Number of delegates in parenthesis. There are a total of 3,056 delegates.)
January 14, 2008 - Iowa (39)
January 19, 2008 - Nevada (22)
January 22, 2008 - New Hampshire (19)
January 29, 2008 - South Carolina (39), Florida (161)
February 5, 2008 - Alabama (45), Arizona (49), Arkansas (30), California (322), Delaware (13), Missouri (63), New Mexico (23), New York (202), New Jersey (93), North Carolina (79), Texas (168), Utah (20)
February 12, 2008 - District of Columbia (13), Tennessee (59), Virginia (72)
February 19, 2008 - Wisconsin (64)
For the Republicans:
January 21, 2008 - Iowa
January 28, 2008 - New Hampshire
January 29, 2008 - Florida
February 5, 2008 - Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Michigan, Missouri, New Mexico, New York North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, West Virginia
February 12, 2008 - Tennessee
States are still jostling for position (for example, Pennsylvania is looking at that Feb 5 date as well), so 1) this calendar isn't set, and 2) I may have missed some maneuverings making it not entirely accurate.
Update: Illinois is also close to moving its primary to Feb 5.