Gov. Bill Richardson, D-N.M.
Joshua Roberts  /  Reuters
New Mexico Governor and Democratic presidential hopeful Bill Richardson is counting on Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire and South Carolina to make him the Democrats choice in 2008.
updated 3/5/2007 3:17:53 PM ET 2007-03-05T20:17:53

Democratic presidential candidate Bill Richardson thinks the race for his party's nomination will be all but over by the end of next January after the first four contests.

The Democrats' tentative nominating schedule begins in January, with caucuses in Iowa and then in Nevada. After that are the New Hampshire primary and then South Carolina's.

In an interview with The Associated Press, the New Mexico governor says those four contests will determine "who the president is."

Richardson defended his push to move up Western states in the election calendar. He says the new schedule would not diminish the role that Iowa and New Hampshire play in picking a nominee.

Richardson spoke over breakfast in Des Moines at the end of a packed weekend that included a half-dozen house parties, meetings with party leaders and time with Iowa bloggers.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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