Minnesota's precinct caucuses have been scheduled for March 1, 2016, a move that will bolster the state's relevance in the presidential nominating process, one party chair said.

In a letter to Secretary of State Steve Simon, DFL Party Chair Ken Martin and Republican Party Chair Keith Downey agreed to the date. In a statement, Downey said the March 1 date puts both in line with the nominating calendars of their national parties.

"This new date respects the traditional early-primary states' status, and positions Minnesota's caucuses to be part of a potential newly emerging March 1st group of states," Downey said. "We hope it will increase Minnesota's stature in the Presidential nominating process for both our parties next year, which all-around is good for Minnesota voters."

Minnesota's precinct caucuses generally take place in February. Read the letter here:


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