MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has ordered the Alabama Democratic Party to adopt new bylaws by Feb. 1, 2024.

The DNC said the May 2023 bylaws reversed the work done in 2019 to increase diversity in the party.

The 2019 bylaws created caucuses for various groups, including youth, disabled, LGBTQ+ and more, meant to bolster their representation in the party. The 2023 bylaws changed the caucuses into committees that challengers said –and the DNC agreed– reduced some of their representative power.

The DNC Hearing Officer’s report said in part:

“The May 6 Bylaws fail to treat all of the diverse groups equitably. This is a fatal defect… in violation of both the DNC Charter and Bylaws as well as the October 2019 Bylaws which were put in place to achieve that very goal.”

Alabama Democratic Party Chairman Randy Kelley said, “That was their opinion. And they’re entitled to their opinion.”

Kelley disputed that the May bylaws reduced anyone’s power.

“We’re not in the business of discriminating against anybody,” he said. “We’re in the business of electing candidates.”

Kelley said he will comply with creating new bylaws and plans to hold executive committee meetings soon. However, he said the new rules will likely look something like the old ones.

“I think they will resemble the bylaws we already have and some of the 2019 bylaws,” Kelley said.

Party Vice Chair Tabitha Isner was one of the challengers of the May bylaws.

“We’ve been asking to actually sit down and ask to be part of this process for a long time and that hasn’t happened,” Isner said.

Isner said she hopes the DNC’s decision leads to compromise among the party and hopes that input from the challengers is seriously considered.

“Hopefully the DNC’s intervention means that we will have some additional pressure to ensure that we all get a seat at the table and an opportunity to have some input going forward,” Isner said.

Ultimately, Isner said the goal is that every group within the party has equal representation and operates under the same guidelines.

According to the DNC’s resolution that passed Friday, Kelley has until Nov. 28 to propose the new bylaws and until Feb. 1, 2024, to hold a vote on them.