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Demos head off primary revolt

SEATTLE (AP) -- The Democratic Party has quelled a budding revolt against Iowa and New Hampshire continuing to have bragging rights as the first states to hold presidential primaries.

But party leaders agreed that the system is fast becoming unworkable, as more states jump into the election cycle earlier. Change is inevitable, they said, but won't come in time to affect the 2000 presidential race.On Friday, the rules committee of the Democratic National Committee turned aside efforts by Michigan and Washington to challenge the supremacy of the two make-or-break states.

Iowa and New Hampshire officials conceded that their special status is endangered. But they argued their primaries air important issues and give candidates an equal opportunity to strut their stuff.

But challengers said other states are weary of taking a backseat.