Republican Timing Penalties

The "carve-out" states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada (designated with a ‡) may begin their process on 1 February 2016. All other states must wait until Tuesday 1 March 2016.

The Republican jurisdictions are listed below in chronological order according to their first major delegate selection event. Many of these events are primaries whose dates are established by state law. Hence, it would take an act of the state legislature to move the date. The issues:

  • State legislatures might change their election laws and state parties might change their caucus dates to comply with the new rules.
  • States could ask for a waiver to be "grandfathered" to the date set by law prior to the adoption of this rule.
  • If any state retains their February date, the "carve-out" states are likely to move their dates into January. For example, New Hampshire law [RSA 653:9] states that their Presidential primary is held "... on a date selected by the secretary of state which is 7 days or more immediately preceding the date on which any other state shall hold a similar election..."
  • States currently starting on the first Tuesday in February might simply move to the first Tuesday in March. If this happens, those states would join the states already starting on the first Tuesday in March resulting in a 2016 "National Primary" that encompasses more states than the 5 February 2008 "National Primary".


"Some form of proportional delegate allocation" is required for events in March 2016.

"Any presidential primary, caucus, convention, or other meeting held for the purpose of selecting delegates to the national convention which occurs prior to the first day of April ... shall provide for the allocation of the delegates selected on a proportional basis." The document adds "The new Subsection (2) requires that any state holding its presidential nominating process in March include some form of proportional delegate allocation, as determined by the state." This provision does not apply to the four "carve-out" states (Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada).

By "proportional", the RNC means

  • Delegates who are bound to Presidential candidates based on the statewide vote may not be bound "winner-take-all" before 1 April 2016. However, a state may set an up to 20% qualification threshold (that is, a candidate must receive 20% or more of the statewide vote in order to qualify for delegates) and a state may set a 50% or more winner-take-all threshold (that is, if a candidate receives 50% of the vote, that candidate receives all of the statewide delegates).
  • The proportional allocation rule does NOT apply to Congressional District delegates bound according to the vote in a Congressional District, National Convention delegates directly elected in a primary, or National Convention delegates who are NOT bound to vote for a particular candidate.

(sorted by)
Start Date
Start Date
Iowa (30)Monday 1 February 2016 Proportional 
New Hampshire (23)Tuesday 9 February 2016 Proportional 
South Carolina (50)Saturday 20 February 2016 Winner-Take-All (district and statewide) 
Nevada (30)Tuesday 23 February 2016 Proportional 
Alabama (50)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Alaska (28)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Proportional 
Arkansas (40)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Georgia (76)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Massachusetts (42)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Proportional 
Minnesota (38)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Oklahoma (43)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Tennessee (58)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Texas (155)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Vermont (16)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Virginia (49)Tuesday 1 March 2016 Proportional 
Kansas (40)Saturday 5 March 2016 Proportional 
Kentucky (46)Saturday 5 March 2016 Proportional 
Louisiana (46)Saturday 5 March 2016 Proportional 
Maine (23)Saturday 5 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Puerto Rico (23)Sunday 6 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Hawaii (19)Tuesday 8 March 2016 Proportional 
Idaho (32)Tuesday 8 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Michigan (59)Tuesday 8 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Mississippi (40)Tuesday 8 March 2016 Combined Selection Statewide: Proportional, District: Winner-Take-Most 
Virgin Islands (9)Thursday 10 March 2016 Delegate Selection 
District of Columbia (19)Saturday 12 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Guam (9)Saturday 12 March 2016 Delegate Selection 
Wyoming (29)Saturday 12 March 2016 Delegate Selection 
Florida (99)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Winner-Take-All 
Illinois (69)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Combined Selection Statewide: Winner-Take-All, District: Loophole 
Missouri (52)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
North Carolina (72)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Proportional 
Northern Marianas (9)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Winner-Take-All 
Ohio (66)Tuesday 15 March 2016 Winner-Take-All 
American Samoa (9)Tuesday 22 March 2016 Delegate Selection 
Arizona (58)Tuesday 22 March 2016 Winner-Take-All 
Utah (40)Tuesday 22 March 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
North Dakota (28)Friday 1 April 2016 Delegate Selection 
Colorado (37)Saturday 2 April 2016 Delegate Selection 
Wisconsin (42)Tuesday 5 April 2016 Winner-Take-All (district and statewide) 
New York (95)Tuesday 19 April 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Connecticut (28)Tuesday 26 April 2016 Winner-Take-Most 
Delaware (16)Tuesday 26 April 2016 Winner-Take-All 
Maryland (38)Tuesday 26 April 2016 Winner-Take-All (district and statewide) 
Pennsylvania (71)Tuesday 26 April 2016 Combined Selection Statewide: Winner-Take-All, District: Loophole 
Rhode Island (19)Tuesday 26 April 2016 Proportional 
Indiana (57)Tuesday 3 May 2016 Winner-Take-All (district and statewide) 
Nebraska (36)Tuesday 10 May 2016 Winner-Take-All 
West Virginia (34)Tuesday 10 May 2016 Delegate Selection 
Oregon (28)Tuesday 17 May 2016 Proportional 
Washington (44)Tuesday 24 May 2016 Combined Selection Statewide: Proportional, District: Winner-Take-Most 
California (172)Tuesday 7 June 2016 Winner-Take-All (district and statewide) 
Montana (27)Tuesday 7 June 2016 Winner-Take-All 
New Jersey (51)Tuesday 7 June 2016 Winner-Take-All 
New Mexico (24)Tuesday 7 June 2016 Proportional 
South Dakota (29)Tuesday 7 June 2016 Winner-Take-All 

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  Democratic Quick Reference   --   Republican Quick Reference  
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