Pa. Senate approves moving up presidential primary date

HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — It’s been talked about for years. Now the state Senate has sent the House legislation that would move up the date of Pennsylvania’s presidential primary, starting in 2024. 

The state's presidential primary election is held on the fourth Tuesday of April, making it, in many cases, an afterthought when it comes to deciding the party nominees for the nation’s highest office. Now the state Senate has passed a bill that would, starting four years from now, set the date on the third Tuesday of March. 

The bill’s sponsor, Republican John Gordner, says that date would avoid any conflict with major party rules.

"I believe the DNC, for instance, has a March 15 date, where you would need their approval to go before," Gordner said. "This would be after March 15. And we would be on the same date as Florida and Illinois and Arizona."

Gordner’s bill would not change the primary date in non-presidential election years. The bill now goes to the state House for consideration.