Per VPAP, “Voter turnout in the June 20th General Assembly primaries was low across most districts, but an alternative metric, comparing the number of voters in the primary to the number of voters for each party in November 2022, shows a higher turnout percentage across all districts.” See below for charts showing State Senate and House of Delegates primary turnout, as a “percentage of the total number of registered voters who cast ballots on June 20th” and “as a percentage of ballots cast for the party’s candidate in the November 2022 congressional midterms.” A few highlights include:
- The top VA Senate primary in terms of “percentage of ballots cast for the party’s candidate in the November 2022 congressional midterms,” was – not surprisingly – the SD13 Democratic primary between Sen. Joe Morrissey and former Del. Lashrecse Aird. That primary reached 42% of 2022 party voters, although just 15% of registered voters took part in this highly imporant primary.
- After SD13, the next hightest primaries in terms of “percentage of ballots cast for the party’s candidate in the November 2022 congressional midterms” were: at 35%, the SD11 Dem primary between Sen. Creigh Deeds and Del. Sally Hudson; at 34%, the SD18 Dem primary between Sen. Louise Lucas and Sen. Lionell Spruill; at 32%, the SD12 GOP primary between Sen. Amanda Chase, former Sen. Glen Sturtevant and Tina Ramirez; at 31%, the SD17 GOP primary between Emily Brewer and Hermie Sadler III; at 29%, the SD35 Dem primary between Sen. Dave Marsden and Heidi Drauschak; etc.
- For House of Delegates, the top primaries in terms of “percentage of ballots cast for the party’s candidate in the November 2022 congressional midterms” were: at 44%, the HD82 Dem primary between Kimberly Pope Adams and Victor McKenzie, Jr.; at 38%, the HD47 GOP primary between Del. Marie March and Del. Wren Williams; at 37%, the HD54 Dem primary between Bellamy Brown, Katrina Callsen and Dave Norris; at 37%, the HD81 Dem primary between Del. Delores McQuinn and Terrence Walker; etc.
- In some of these cases, turnout was driven in part by the fact that there was overlap between hotly contested races for State Senate, House of Delegates and/or competitive local races. For instance, in Arlington County, turnout was relatively high in the non-competitive State Senate race between incumbent Sen. Barbara Favola and challenger James DeVita, not because of that race per se, but because there were several hot local races on the ballot (for two County Board seats, Commonwealth’s Attorney and Sheriff). Another example is the relatively high turnout in the HD82 Dem primary; as Sam Shirazi notes, “This was likely due to [the] Aird-Morrissey primary up ballot.” Shirazi also notes, correctly, that “if those voters come out again, [it] will help Kimberly Pope Adams [D] in her Tossup race with GOP Del. Kim Taylor [R].” Let’s hope that happens!