Voices & Choices

Ranked Choice Results from Virginia Republican Convention

Ranked Choice Results from Virginia Republican Convention

The Virginia Republican Party used ranked choice voting at their unassembled nominating convention on May 8, with 30,566 delegates voting at locations around the state. Below are the RCV results.


Governor Race

Glenn Youngkin won the nomination after six rounds.

  • Youngkin experiences consistent growth in vote share. Youngkin took an early 7-point lead, and gradually expanded that lead throughout the rounds of tabulation as he earned 2nd-choice and 3rd-choice support from delegates who originally supported his opponents.
  • Voters want to rank backup choices. This election represents a test of whether voters will take cues from their preferred candidate on whether to rank additional choices. Third-place finisher Amanda Chase encouraged her supporters not to rank other candidates. However, when Chase was eliminated after the 5th round, 74% of her supporters had ranked at least one of the two finalists and had their ballots count towards the final round.
  • Only 8.5% of delegates did not express a preference between the two finalists, a majority of whom were Amanda Chase supporters. Fully 99.9% of delegates cast a valid ballot.



Attorney General Race

Jason Miyares won the nomination for Attorney General after three rounds.

  • Front-runner builds consensus in close contest for nomination. Jason Miyares began with a narrow lead in first-choice preferences, just two percentage points ahead of runner-up Chuck Smith. Miyares held onto his lead through 3 rounds, earning 40% of transfer delegates from supporters of Leslie Haley and 52% from Jack White after those candidates were eliminated. Smith preformed well among transfer delegates, but fell short of the amount needed to close the gap for first place. Jason Miyares won the nomination with 52% of the weighted delegate vote, demonstrating broad support.  
  • Almost all ballots ranked a finalist. 30% of delegates ranked a non-finalist as their first choice. However, 89% of those delegates also included a backup ranking for at least one of the two finalists, Miyares and Smith, so their votes counted for those finalists in the final round.
  • There were a low percentage of inactive ballots. Over the course of 3 rounds, only about 3% of individual ballots became inactive. This indicates that voters are comfortable ranking many candidates, even though it may be their first time using Ranked Choice Voting.  
  • No recount planned. Runner-up Chuck Smith requested a recount, referring to "the need for transparency of the voting process and the integrity of the count." However, that request was denied by the state party because the winner's margin of victory is greater than 1%.



Lt. Governor Race

Winsome Sears won the nomination after 5 rounds.

  • Sears holds on to her lead in the final round, even after her opponent Tim Hugo earned 47% of Glenn Davis supporters chose Tim Hugo as a backup choice compared to 29% who chose Sears. One reason? Sears increased her first round lead in rounds 2, 3 and 4.



Next Steps for Nominees

These Republican nominees will compete in the November general election against the winners of the upcoming Democratic primary elections. Virginia Democrats have not yet embraced ranked choice voting for their own nominations.


Other Resources

Blog post: Arlington County Democrats Make Use of Ranked Choice Voting

Blog post: Virginia GOP uses ranked choice voting to elect new chairperson



Join Us Today to Help Create a More Perfect Union