- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 26, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Some General Assembly members want to move up permanently North Carolina’s primary elections for state and federal offices held every two years.

The Senate voted Wednesday night for changing the primary from the Tuesday following the first Monday in May to the same date in March.

The legislature had shifted the 2016 primary to March 15 so the state could wield more influence over the Democratic and Republican presidential nominations.

The new proposed date would be used starting in 2018. Candidate filing dates also would be moved to December of the previous year.

The Senate also voted Wednesday to reduce signature thresholds necessary to create an official state political party and to get on the ballot as an unaffiliated candidate.

Both bills now go to the House for consideration.

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