“Iowa Democrats promise to revamp caucuses in letter seeking to maintain early nominating contest”

Des Moines Register:

The Iowa Democratic Party is promising to rework its caucuses as party leaders begin a formal application process that will determine whether it can continue holding an early presidential nominating contest.

The state party submitted a letter of intent to members of the Democratic National Committee on Wednesday, notifying them that Iowa will be among the states making the case they should launch the presidential nominating process.

For the last 50 years, Iowa has kicked off that process with its first-in-the-nation caucuses. The DNC has long blessed the ritual, granting waivers to Iowa and three other states — New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina — allowing them to hold their caucuses and primaries before the rest of the country. …

“We acknowledge and recognize that changes must be made to the caucuses so that they’re more straightforward and accessible,” Wilburn said. “We’re willing to make significant procedural changes and look to expand ways for people to participate.”

Unlike primaries, caucuses are held at a specific time and location and participants must attend in person. Critics argue that requirement often excludes people who have mobility issues, have inflexible work schedules, lack child care or otherwise face barriers to participation. 

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