When Virginia votes on Super Tuesday, there will be 99 delegates up for grabs, the fourth largest delegate prize in the bunch. But even though other Super Tuesday states have more, here’s why Virginia could still have a big impact on the outcome.
Virginia has what’s known as an open primary. That that means any registered voter can show up on Super Tuesday to cast a vote in the Democratic Primary. There is no Republican primary this time around in the state.
“That means that Virginia may be a place where voters who identify as independents or moderate Republicans may show up and we may see more support for them, more moderate candidates on the democratic ballot,” according to Virginia Tech Political Science Professor Caitlin Jewitt. Jewitt is the author of a book called “The Primary Rules.”
On March 3rd, 14 states and one U.S. territory will have primary elections, the highest number of states yet, all voting on the same day.
“More important than the number of states on super Tuesday is the composition of states on super Tuesday. So, in 2016 super Tuesday was often referred to as the SEC primary, because so many States holding contests were Southern states with SEC football teams. This year, super Tuesday states are much more diverse, including California and Texas, which changes the dynamics of the race.”
In 2016 just 13% of eligible voters turned out for Virginia’s Democratic Primary.