Virginia state law currently sets our presidential primary date for the second Tuesday in February. This date precedes both the DNC and the RNC window, which do not allow any delegate selection process to begin before the first Tuesday in March (except for Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada). Legislation pending in the General Assembly would move that date primary to the first Tuesday in March. See HB 1667 (Del. McClellan, Patron [thanks Jennifer!], HB 1843 (Del. Cole, Patron), SB 1246 (Sen. Vogel, Patron). Delegate McClellan’s bill would also reduce the petition requirement from 10,000 to 5,000 signatures. Senator Vogel’s bill was reported out by the Senate Privileges & Elections Committee on January 27, 2011 by a 14-1 vote and awaits Senate action.
This effort appears to be have bipartisan support and we should be able to have our primary. A later date would have enabled us to obtain bonus delegates, but given that we have to work with the GOP, the selected date is fine. I hope that Maryland, DC, West Virginia, Delaware, and/or North Carolina join us on this date, so all the states can get bonus delegates for “clustering.”
I will post updates, but please follow Josh Putnam at Frontloading HQ for up to the minute details on all the State delegate selection processes.