Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) says her home state of California should have “more say” in the Democratic Party’s primaries because they have “fancy” big-money parties in Beverly Hills.
“As you know, we have candidates who fly out to Los Angeles from everywhere to raise money,” the California Democrat told CNBC on Thursday.
“As a matter of fact, it had gotten so that you would have two, three, four at a time in Beverly Hills having dinners. And some of our contributors who are very rich were holding, you know, fancy parties, trying to accommodate the request for donations and contributions. And so, you know, the conclusion, the thinking is that if we are supplying tremendous dollars to candidates, we ought to have more say.”
California’s primary comes up on March 3 — Super Tuesday — after a handful of other states hold caucuses and primaries. But Waters thinks California should be front and center at all times.
“Beyond that, a lot of people have come to the conclusion that it should not simply be Iowa and New Hampshire and certainly they are not reflective of the makeup of this country,” Waters added. “And so, California has a role to play.”
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Former Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill into law in 2017 that moved California’s presidential primary election to March this year rather than June, putting the state’s nearly 500 delegates into play earlier in the nomination process.
“Candidates will not be able to ignore the largest, most diverse state in the nation as they seek our country’s highest office,” California Secretary of State Alex Padilla said at the time, according to NPR. “California has been a leader time and time again on the most important issues facing our country — including immigration, education, and the environment.”
Padilla said that changing the date will “help ensure that issues important to Californians are prioritized by presidential candidates from all political parties.”
State Democratic Party spokesman Roger Salazar told Fox News last year that moving the primary up in the process will help push California in a more progressive direction. “The Democratic electorate [in California] is much more progressive than almost any state,” Salazar said at the time. “All of that is going to help bring up some of the core issues Californians care about.”
Meanwhile, Waters is still focusing on President Donald Trump. The self-declared leader of the anti-Trump resistance, Waters told MSNBC in January that Trump should expect an ongoing impeachment effort, with more “activity” to come later this year.
“The subpoenas that I have issued thats gone through the lower courts are now going to be heard at the Supreme Court in March,” Waters told MSNBC, referring to a handful of court documents seeking Trump’s private, pre-presidential financial records from a handful of banks and lenders, including Deutsche Bank. Democrats claim that Trump and “Russian oligarchs” used Deutsche Bank as a clearinghouse for real estate transactions and influence-peddling.
“We will not stop. Whether or not that leads to another impeachment activity, I don’t know,” said Waters, 81, who has served in Congress since 1991. “But I know we must continue with the work that our constituents have elected us to come to Congress to do.”