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Voting at Alexandria City Hall (staff photo by James Cullum)

Virginia’s dual presidential primary is Tuesday, March 5. Here’s what you need to know about Super Tuesday in Alexandria.

Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. Unofficial results will be posted with the Virginia State Board of Elections after polls close. Virginia is one of 15 states conducting a presidential primary on Tuesday.

The Democrat ballot features three names — President Joe Biden, Rep. Dean Benson Philips (D-MN) and Marianne Williamson. Williamson had dropped out of the race but has since un-suspended her campaign.

There are six candidates on the Republican ballot, including a number who suspended their campaigns. Republican frontrunner former President Donald Trump is on the ballot with former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.

The ballot also includes New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Vivek Ramaswamy, Ryan L. Brinkley and Florida Gov. Ron Desantis, though all of them have dropped out of the race.

In Alexandria, the ballots will contain a contest for either the Democratic or Republican nominee for President of the United States,” notes the Alexandria Office of Voter Registration and Elections. “In Dual Primary Elections, qualified voters may vote in either Primary, but not both. They must indicate their choice to the Pollbook officer and may not be challenged on their choice.”

In the last Democrat presidential primary in March 2020, Biden won with nearly 50% of ballots cast, followed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) with 18.33% and then Sen. Bernie Sanders with 18.23%.

Early voting started on January 19, and the in-person early voting deadline is March 2 at 5 p.m. at the city’s Office of Voter Registrations and Elections (132 N. Royal Street).

There are a number of polling place changes for the primary.

According to the city registrar’s office:

  • The former South Port Apartments Precinct will vote at Samuel W. Tucker Elementary School (435 Ferdinand Day Drive)
  • The Masonic Temple Precinct has been relocated to Douglas MacArthur Elementary School (1101 Janney’s Lane)
  • Two new precincts (Del Pepper Center and The View Alexandria) have been brought on-line in the West End. Affected voters have been notified via mail, but we encourage all West End voters to double check their polling place

Voters are asked to show identification — anything from driver’s licenses to voter confirmation documents, a U.S. passport, employee identification or student identification. Unregistered voters can also register on Tuesday at their correct polling precinct.

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A voter participates in the Super Tuesday primary at Mount Vernon Community School, March 3, 2020 (Staff photo by James Cullum)

(Updated 3:35 p.m.) Early voting will start on Friday, Jan. 19, for the dual Presidential primaries.

The primaries are scheduled for March 5. The deadline for early voting is March 2.

“The ballots will contain a contest for either the Democratic or Republican nominee for President of the United States,” a release from the City of Alexandria said. “In Dual Primary Elections, qualified voters may vote in either Primary, but not both.”

The release said voters must indicate their choice to the polling officer.

Incumbent President Joe Biden is running against Marianne Williamson and Dean Benson Phillips in the Democratic Presidential Primary.

On the Republican ballot is:

  • Chris Christie
  • Ryan Binkley
  • Vivek Ramaswamy
  • Donald Trump
  • Ron DeSantis
  • Nikki Haley

Christie and Ramaswamy have since dropped out of the race. In the Iowa primary, Trump led the pack with 51% of the vote, with DeSantis at 21% and Haley at 19%.

The Office of Voter Registration & Elections is open for in-person voting from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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Early voting is underway for a School Board District A special election following School Board Member Willie Bailey’s abrupt resignation.

The election sees real estate agent and former Parks and Recreation commissioner Gina Baum square off against Tim Beaty, an Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) substitute teacher and former Global Strategies Director at the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Alexandria City High School’s student newspaper Theogony interviewed both candidates on issues like school safety and substance abuse issues in ACPS.

Baum told Theogony that teacher vacancies are the most important issue facing ACPS and needs to be addressed immediately, with overcrowded classrooms having a detrimental impact on students’ education.

Beaty previously told ALXnow that one of his main goals on the School Board would be putting his experience to use in helping ACPS navigate collective bargaining.

District A includes Old Town, Del Ray, Potomac Yard and Arlandria.

The deadline to vote early is Saturday, Jan. 6, with the special election being held on Tuesday, Jan. 9.

Voters can cast their ballot early in person at the Office of Voter Registration & Elections (132 N. Royal Street).

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Voters line up to vote early in Old Town (Staff Photo by Jay Westcott)

The wait for early voting should be a little shorter next year.

The City of Alexandria is working to expand its Office of Voter Registration and Elections in Old Town (421 King Street) to accommodate a surge in early voting.

On Saturday, Dec. 16, the City Council is set to review an amended lease for the office that would allow the office to expand to accommodate more in-person/early voting.

The docket item says the city will also use the new space as storage for election materials and equipment.

“Early voting has increased significantly over the past few election cycles with the length of the ballots and the election type contributing to long wait times and lines for voters at voting locations,” the report said. “In addition, the passage of SB 3 effective July 1, 2022, requires the reporting of absentee results by precinct which will result in the need for additional equipment to support a ballot on demand system.”

The report said the office will expand by around 500 square feet and it will be in place for the presidential election next year.

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Alexandria Democratic members of the Virginia’s General Assembly were swept back into office on election night.

There were no surprises from the unofficial election returns Tuesday night. Facing no opposition, Democratic incumbents Del. Elizabeth Bennett-Parker (5th) was reelected to a second term with 21,622 votes, and Del. Charniele Herring (4th) was reelected to her eighth two-year term with 10,368 votes. Del. Alfonso Lopez (D-3rd) was also reelected with 81% (16,837 votes) and defeated independent candidate Major Mike Webb.

State Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-39) was reelected with 78% of votes cast (38,789 votes), soundly defeating Republican Sophia Moshasha who got 22% (10,706 votes).

Most of the Democratic candidates spoke after the unofficial results were announced at an Alexandria Democratic Committee watch party at Pork Barrel BBQ in Del Ray.

“With the legislature that we hope to return to Richmond tonight, we’re going to have tell (Republican Governor) Glenn Yongkin that he can work with us or he can face a brick wall,” Ebbin said.

Statewide, Virginia Democrats campaigned on protecting abortion rights and retook control of both houses of the General Assembly, making Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin a lame duck for the remainder of his term.

Bennett-Parker said that she is one of a handful of Virginia legislators to have a child while in office.

“She inspires me every day to do this work,” Bennett-Parker said of her daughter. “I want her to grow up in Virginia where she has the right to make decisions about her own body.”

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine also stopped by to congratulate the winners.

“Times are tough in this country right now,” Kaine said. “Times are tough in this world right now. But when times are tough families pulled together and that’s what we’re doing… I always say I was born with a good compass, and I married a good anchor. And if you have a good compass and a good anchor, there is nothing that will ever stop good.”

Voter turnout in Alexandria exceeded expectations. About 35% (40,166 votes) of the city’s active registered voters cast ballots on Tuesday.

Election signs outside Alexandria City Hall on election day, Nov. 7, 2023 (staff photo by James Cullum)
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Casting a ballot at the Mount Vernon Recreation Center precinct on election day, Nov. 7, 2023 (staff photo by James Cullum)

About 30% of Alexandria voters are expected to turn out at the polls on election day today, Nov. 7.

As of 10 a.m. — four hours after polls opened — 21,661 voters cast their ballots, which is about 23% of the city’s 96,232 active registered voters. A vast majority of those ballots, 13,927 votes (64%), are from absentee voters. Also as of 10 a.m., 7,734 voters cast their ballots in person, according to the city’s Office of Voter Registration and Elections.

Alexandria Registrar Angie Turner said her office is basing the 30% estimate on the turnouts of the 2015 and 2019 elections, which were both non-presidential and Congressional election years with members of the Virginia General Assembly on the ballot.

“So, 2015 and 2019 are our last comparable elections, and both of those elections hovered right at about 32%,” Turner told ALXnow.

As previously reported, the only contests on the ballot in Alexandria are for the 39th District of the Virginia State Senate and three House of Delegates districts. The City’s solid block of Democratic voters makes the prospect of defeat unlikely.

Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-31) is running against Republican Sophia Moshasha for the newly redrawn 39th District and has campaigned that a Republican takeover of the State Senate would result in catastrophe for women’s reproductive rights.

Incumbent Delegates Charniele Herring (D-46) and Elizabeth Bennett-Parker (D-45) are both running unopposed, for the new 4th and 5th Districts. Incumbent Del. Alfonso Lopez (D-49), the incumbent Democrat for the 3rd District, is up for re-election and is challenged by independent Major Mike Webb, a frequent candidate for office in Arlington County.

Alexandria Republican Committee Chair Annetta Catchings, who is considering a second run at the city’s mayorship next year, spoke to voters outside Charles E. Beatley, Jr. Central Library, and said that the city has a growing base of Republicans.

“Over the last week I’ve talked to a lot of residents, and it only confirms what I know,” Catchings told ALXnow. “The city of Alexandria isn’t as blue as people think.”

Just after 10 a.m., a Democratic voter started shouting at Catchings.

“You are insane,” the woman told Catchings. “Republicans are against me as a woman, they’re against me as a Black person. How are you supporting Trump? You think Trump likes Black people? You think he supports you?”

Catchings invited the woman to coffee after she voted.

The Alexandria Republican Committee has no formal election night watch party organized. The Alexandria Democratic Committee will host an election night watch party at Pork Barrel BBQ (2312 Mount Vernon Avenue) after polls close at 7 p.m.

Election signs outside Alexandria City Hall on election day, Nov. 7, 2023 (staff photo by James Cullum)
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Voting at Alexandria City Hall, Nov. 2, 2021 (staff photo by James Cullum)

Election Day is tomorrow, Tuesday, which brings to an end an entire season of voting that kicked off in September.

Alexandrians voting on Tuesday will face few decisions tomorrow, as the only contests on the ballot are for the 39th District of the Virginia State Senate and three House of Delegates districts.

“This will be the first election held in the new General Assembly districts,” Mayor Justin Wilson said in his most recent newsletter. “Alexandria will be entirely represented in the 39th State Senate District and will be represented by three members of the House of Delegates, those elected from the 3rd District, the 4th District, and the 5th District.”

Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. and voters will have the opportunity to register and vote on Tuesday provided they head to the correct polling location. Sample ballots are available online.

Ahead of voting, the city recommends voters confirm their polling place on the state Dept. of Elections website, a map of which is also on the city’s website. The city notes one change for tomorrow’s election: the former South Port Apartments Precinct will vote at the Tucker School (435 Ferdinand Day Drive).

Unlike many other states, Virginia has an off-off election year, when ballots contain local contests but no federal or state-level offices — races that traditionally drive higher turnout. This year, there is national attention is on Virginia because Republicans are vying for control of the Democratically held Senate, giving them a trifecta.

Although Alexandria is largely Democrat, Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-31) has been sounding the alarm on the progress he says Republicans will repeal if they take control of the Democratically held state Senate, including the majorities needed to party to push for a 15-week abortion limit.

Ebbin is up for re-election and is challenged by Republican Sophia Moshasha.

He says he is focused on pushing a Democratic agenda and blocking attempts by Republicans to repeal gun safety laws and abortion rights. He also champions wage increases public school teachers and law enforcement officers to tackle attrition from these sectors, an issue leading to staffing crunches within Alexandria’s police force and public schools system.

Moshasha, a self-described technology advocate, has pledged to tackle rising crime and affirm the role of parents in public education. She says she has a moderate view on abortion — affirming exceptions for rape, incest and the health of the mother — and supports tackling climate change but criticizes state policies such as Virginia Clean Energy Act for burdening individual households.

With a Republican trifecta in reach, Youngkin has been actively campaigning on behalf of local Republican races and keeping the possibility of a 15-week abortion limit front and center.

“I think this is a reasonable place for us to land,” Gov. Glenn Youngkin said on ABC this week. “And what’s on the ballot, I think, is a choice between no limits and reasonable limits.”

After the polls close, the city says election officials will begin posting unofficial results on the state’s website.

Across Virginia, both House and Senate races are predicted to be close, according to the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, which adds that results may not be finalized Tuesday night.

“These races are on a razor’s edge, and with the way Virginia counties report their results, some races may not be called until about a week after the election,” it said in a press release sent Monday.

But Alexandria’s House of Delegates races are less competitive.

Del. Charniele Herring, the incumbent Democrat for the 4th District, is running unopposed for her re-election campaign. Likewise, Del. Elizabeth Bennett-Parker, the incumbent Democrat for the 5th District, is also running unopposed.

Del. Alfonso Lopez, the incumbent Democrat for the 3rd District, is up for re-election and is challenged by independent Major Mike Webb, a frequent candidate for office in Arlington County.

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West End voting precincts potentially affected by proposed changes (via the City of Alexandria)

In a bid to make voting in the West End faster, the Office of Voter Registration and Elections is planning to add two new precincts to the neighborhood.

Ahead of the planned increase to six precincts, aimed at decreasing the number of voters per precinct in the presidential election in the fall of 2024, the city is asking for public feedback.

“This preemptive measure is being undertaken in anticipation of a likely increase in voter turnout during the upcoming presidential elections that could push existing precincts past the 4,000-voter threshold, triggering a legal requirement to redraw boundaries,” the city said in a press release sent out today (Monday). “By doing so now, the elections office can gather more public input and prepare better.”

There are four precincts west of I-395 serving the West End neighborhood, shown below.

The current West End precinct boundaries (via City of Alexandria)

Three of the four existing precincts currently handle about 5,000 registered voters each, the city says.

Polling placing can service more than 5,000 people, General Registrar Angie Maniglia Turner tells ALXnow. During a presidential election, however, if more than 4,000 people come to vote, then the legal requirement to change the boundaries kicks in.

The two proposed precincts would be located at the newly renamed Redella S. “Del” Pepper Community Resource Center at 4850 Mark Center Drive and at The View Alexandria at 5000 Fairbanks Avenue, according to a map included in an online survey.

The proposed West End precinct boundaries (via City of Alexandria)

The city emphasized that the planned changes will only alter where voters go to vote on election day — not the candidates that appear on the ballot.

“The changes would take effect beginning with the March 2024 Presidential Primary,” the survey says. “These changes would NOT impact the November 2023 General Election.”

The proposed map was selected by the Electoral Board for public feedback this June, according to a timeline in the survey.

“Voter accessibility, future population growth, and voter convenience were prioritized,” the survey said.

The Electoral Board will review feedback in September and submit its plan either in September or October.

A City Council vote on the changes is set for November. If approved, the new map would be submitted to the Office of the Attorney General for approval.

Affected voters would be notified of the changes in February, if the office approves the new map.

Community members can provide their feedback in-person at the  Del Pepper Community Resource Center from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 8.

The online survey is open until Aug. 21. It asks respondents to share where they live, how they vote and how the changes would affect their ability to vote. There is also space for open-ended comments.

Those interested can also request a physical copy of the survey by reaching out to the Office of Voter Registration and Elections at 703-746-4050.

Hallie LeTendre contributed to this report

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Sean Hannity with Alexandria “I Voted” sticker (image via Fox News/YouTube)

Conservative talking head Sean Hannity used Alexandria’s “I Voted” sticker in a segment attacking national elections, though why the city’s logo was used is never addressed in the ten-minute segment.

Hannity expressed frustration that some elections were still too close to call, which makes the use of Alexandria’s sticker all the more puzzling.

In Alexandria, it was an off-year election with only the 8th Congressional District on the ballot. Congressman Don Beyer (D) won reelection with 73% of the vote.

The election was called in Beyer’s favor within a few hours of polls closing. Republican candidate Karina Lipsman conceded and thanked Beyer for his public service before 10 p.m.

Control of the House of Representatives is still undetermined and some Republican leaders have called the election results underwhelming.

“Despite the lies from the media mob, we never predicted this red wave, in fact we warned all year long this election would be incredibly close,” said Hannity, who had previously suggested a “red tsumani” during the midterms. “I’m getting a little sick and tired of being lied about in the news media, so we will refresh their memory.”

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Next Monday marks the last day Alexandrians can register to vote or update their registration for the Nov. 8 general election.

Applications to vote can be submitted online before midnight on Monday, Oct. 17. They can also be submitted in-person at the Office of Voter Registration and Elections (132 N. Royal Street, Suite 100) by 5 p.m. the same day or mailed in provided they are postmarked before Oct. 17.

The only election on the ballot for Alexandria is for the United States House of Representatives 8th District. Incumbent Congressman Don Beyer (D) is facing off against Karina Lipsman (R) and Teddy Fikre (I).

“If you have moved since the last time you voted, please make sure you are registered at your current address,” a release from the City of Alexandria said. “You may check your registration at vote.elections.virginia.gov, by email at [email protected], or by calling 703 746 4050. Voters who do not update their registration records before the deadline may be required to cast provisional ballots through the Same Day Registration process.”

Alexandria is a fairly reliably blue city and the 8th District race has rarely been a particularly competitive one. Beyer, a former lieutenant governor who also served as the Ambassador to Switzerland during the Obama administration, was first elected in 2014. Since then, Beyer has won reelection by a significant margin each time, winning 76% of the vote in 2018 and 75.8% in 2020.

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