WASHINGTON, Jan. 1 (UPI) -- A Democratic Party commission advises shorting the primary elections season and reducing the influence of so-called superdelegates, party officials said.
The Democrats want to avoid a repeat of 2008's drawn-out primaries battle.
The panel also recommends delaying the start of causes until Feb 1 at the earliest and requiring superdelegates vote for whomever their state backed in its primary or caucus, The Christian Science Monitor reported on its Web site Thursday.
In 2008, the first caucuses in Iowa were Jan. 3, and the first primary in New Hampshire was Jan. 8. Currently, superdelegates can back whomever they choose for the party nomination.
Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine praised the commission's recommendations as "consistent with the goals of the Democratic Party and President Obama."
"Openness, fairness, and accessibility are central to our ideals as Democrats, and the commission's recommendations to reform the delegate selection process will ensure that voters' voices and preferences are
paramount to our process of nominating a presidential candidate," Kaine said in a statement issued Wednesday.
The commission recommendations go to the party's Rules and Bylaws Committee. Whether they will pass, however, was up for debate, the online newspaper said.
"You never know what's going to happen, in either party, because at every stage there are people with different views," says Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.
Sabato told the Monitor he expected the delay to start the process would succeed but wasn't as sure about changes voting requirements of superdelegates, who represent 20 percent of the total delegate count.