ROANOKE, Va. – It’s been a few years since we last elected a president so we wanted to provide you with a refresher on this part of the process.
When it comes to Election Day in November, whichever candidate receives the most votes in Virginia receives all of our 13 electoral college votes; however, that is NOT how it works in the primaries.
When voters head to the polls on Super Tuesday what they are deciding is how Virginia’s 99 pledged delegates will vote at the Democratic National Convention in July.
Those delegates can be awarded to any of the 14 people who will be on the ballot in Virginian.
While we’ll see 14 people on the ballot come Tuesday, only five of them still have active campaigns
Those six are Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Tulsi Gabbard and Mike Bloomberg.
The key to getting pledged delegates is the all-important 15% threshold.
In order for a candidate to receive delegates, he or she must receive at least 15% of the popular vote in the primary.
To not be construed as having any sort of political bias, our scenario below uses an imaginary universe where Marvel and DC superheros live together and are running for president.
In this universe, we have seven people on our “Virginia” ballot with voters deciding who the 99 pledged delegates will support.
With only three candidates, Parker, Wayne and Romanoff, breaking the 15% threshold, we can now ignore the 5,746 votes cast for the other four candidates and reexamine our results.
Now, based upon the above percentages, we can distribute the delegates to the three candidates.
Looking at the big picture, across the country, a candidate needs 1,991 delegates to secure the nomination.
We hope this helps you better understand the political system ahead of Super Tuesday.