Starting in 2020, California will hold primary elections in March, under a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown Wednesday.
Instead of waiting until June, when every presidential nominating contest of the past two decades has already been decided, California voters will head to the polls on March 3rd, 2020. The idea is that candidates will have to travel to California to appeal to its voters, rather than just its wealthy donors.
Backers hope the move will give the state influence it has lacked in deciding presidential nominees.
Lawmakers have tried this before—California moved up in 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008. That yielded little benefit, as other states jockeyed ahead, but proponents say better to try again than remain stuck near irrelevance.
The blog Frontloading HQ, which tracks political party rules and primary elections, currently lists eight states scheduled to host a March 3 primary, including Texas, Virginia and Massachusetts.