February 7, 2020

How do earlier primaries influence Arizonans?

About two dozen states will hold primary events before Arizona.

Registered Democrats in Arizona have several weeks before they weigh in on the presidential candidates. The state’s presidential preference election is March 17. By then, more than two dozen other states will have already had their say. Lorraine Rivera got insight on whether those outcomes could sway voters in Arizona from Samara Klar, a political scientist with the University of Arizona School of Government and Public Policy.

“They give voters a cue as to who’s viable and who’s not,” Klar said. “Part of the reason why we see that the Iowa winner tends to predict the official nominee is because it gives people a heuristic, ‘Well you know, if voters there like him or her, then maybe this person has a real shot.’”

Klar also predicts that Arizona will cement itself as a battleground state this year.

“What we’ve seen in the last few years is a real influx of Democratic registrants,” Klar said. “In the past few months, the majority of registrants have identified with a party, which we haven’t typically seen in Arizona. Arizona has been a pretty independent state and it’s actually moving to become a little more partisan.”

Arizona 360
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