With the big “Straw Poll” now behind Iowa Republicans, party leaders arepreparing to switch the date of the Iowa Caucuses. February 7th had been set as the date for the Iowa Caucuses, which areparty-building meetings held in every precinct in the state, but Iowa G.O.P.chairman Kayne Robinson says the Caucuses will probably be held January31st. In the presidential election calendar, New Hampshire holds thenation’s first primary — a week after Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucuses– and New Hampshire officials plan to move their date to February 8th. Thereason for moving the dates ahead is that OTHER states have changed thedates of their primaries, hoping by moving up on the calendar their stateswill have a bigger say in selecting the next president. Drake Universitypolitical science professor Hugh Weinbrenner says the “Leap-frogging” madelast Saturday’s Straw Poll the most significant political event of 1999.The Iowa Republican Party “grossed” at least half a million dollars withlast Saturday’s Straw Poll in which ballots cost 25-dollars each. CandidateJohn Mc-Cain refused to participate, calling the event a “fundraising scam.”Robinson, the party chairman, rejects Mc-Cain’s arguement.Robinson and Weinbrenner made their comments during an appearance on IowaPublic Television.
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