GOP Starting Line Inches Toward New Year's Day

WASHINGTON (AP) -- So much for pushing back the start of primary

Leapfrogging states aiming to increase their influence are
threatening to push the first GOP contests into early January.

A Florida commission is expected to announce Friday that its
presidential primary will be held Jan. 31, a move that could spark
a stampede by Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina.

Those states were granted special early voting status by both political

The result could be a primary season that many believe starts
too early, lasts too long and leaves voters weary long before the
November general election.

Both political parties have tried to avoid a repeat of 2008 by
delaying early presidential primaries and caucuses.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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