Home 2023 Elections Turnout Last Tuesday Still Wasn’t High, But It Was Mostly Up From...

Turnout Last Tuesday Still Wasn’t High, But It Was Mostly Up From Previous Off/Odd-Year VA Primaries; Dem Turnout Was Generally Higher Than Republican Turnout

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Courtesy of VPAP, see below for voter turnout statistics for 2023 and previous years. A few things jump out at me:

  • Turnout is always very low in these off/odd-year primaries, with single digits and low double digits in most cases. That’s pathetic, of course, especially given that in a LOT of these cases, the primary essentially IS the general election, given that the district is either solid-blue or solid-red, so whoever wins the primary is all but guaranteed to win in November. But do most voters “get” that? Apparently not, based on these low turnout numbers, year after year.
  • On the brighter side, it looks like turnout was higher “compared to the two most recent cycles when House [of Delegates] and [State] Senate seats were both on the ballot.”
  • The highest-turnout primaries last Tuesday were: the HD54 Democratic primary (Bellamy Brown, Katrina Callsen, Dave Norris) at 20.43%; the HD55 Democratic primary (Amy Laufer, Kellen Squire) at 17.37%; the SD11 Democratic primary (Creigh Deeds, Sally Hudson) at 16.67%; the SD40 Democratic primary (Barbara Favola, James DeVita) at 16.38%; the HD47 Republican primary (Marie March, Wren Williams) at 16.27%; the HD81 Democratic primary (Delores McQuinn, Terrence Walker) at 15.18%; the SD13 Democratic primary (Joe Morrissey vs. Lashrecse Aird) at 14.55%; the HD15 Democratic primary (Laura Jane Cohen, Eric Schmidt, Henri Thompson) at 13.88%; the HD82 Democratic primary (Kimberly Pope Adams, Victor McKenzie) at 13.40%; the SD35 Democratic primary (Dave Marsden, Heidi Drauschak) at 13.36%; the SD37 Democratic primary (Chap Petersen, Saddam Salim) at 13.29%; the HD07 Democratic primary (Mary Barthelson, Paul Berry, Shyamali Hauth, Karen Keys-Gamarra) at 12.87%; the HD73 Republican primary (Mark Earley, Jr, Yan Gleyzer, Ryan Harter) at 12.85%; the SD12 Republican primary (Amanda Chase, Glen Sturtevant, Tina Ramirez) at 12.73%; etc. So, overwhelmingly, Democratic primaries had the highest turnout this past Tuesday…
  • The lowest turnout in the 6/20 Virginia primaries were: the HD50 Republican primary (Tommy Wright, Jr. and John Marsden) at 2.73%; the SD29 Republican primary (Maria Martin, Nikki Rattray Baldwin) at 3.71%; the SD04 Democratic primary (DA Pierce, Luke Priddy, Trish White-Boyd) the HD94 Republican primary (Amy Chuzinski, Ken O’Brien, Andy Pittman) at 5.23%; etc. Surprisingly, some VERY competitive, high-dollar primaries had relatively low turnout. For instance, SD29 (Jeremy McPike, Elizabeth Guzman) was only at 8.91%, which is surprising. And HD96 (Kelly Convirs-Fowler, Susan Hippen, Sean Monteiro, Brandon Hutchins) was also very low, at 7.11%, even though it was VERY competitive.

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