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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Republican Party has canceled holding a presidential primary in 2020.

In a statement Saturday, the party's State Central Committee passed a rule saying a primary "would serve no useful purpose" because Republican Donald Trump is president.

Earlier this month, Republican leaders in Nevada, South Carolina and Kansas voted to scrap their presidential nominating contests in 2020, erecting more hurdles for the long-shot candidates challenging President Donald Trump.

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Canceling primaries, caucuses and other voting is not unusual for the party of the White House incumbent seeking a second term. Doing so allows Trump to try to consolidate his support as Democrats work to winnow their large field of candidates.

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Challengers have emerged to Trump, including former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld and Joe Walsh, a former Illinois congressman. Others may join them.

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Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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