May 05 2023

Explanation Of Mass Meeting To Select Candidate For Election To General Assembly

Explanation Of Mass Meeting To Select Candidate For Election To General Assembly


The purpose of this information to provide notice to and answer questions of residents of Giles County regarding the upcoming process to select a Republican candidate for election as the District 42 member of the Virginia House of Delegates.  House District 42 comprises all of Giles County, the City of Radford, and a portion of Montgomery and Pulaski Counties.  A map of the district is available at this link:  In providing this information, Giles County is not endorsing any candidate but explaining the process.  Because it does not appear that the Democratic Party is putting forth a candidate for House District 42, the successful candidate at this mass meeting will likely be our next Delegate that represents Giles County.


In Virginia, each political party chooses the method of selection for its candidate.  If only one candidate comes forth, that candidate is typically selected as the nominee and placed on the ballot.  When more than one candidate from the same party qualifies to be on the ballot, each party must then engage in a selection process which can be by a variety of methods: (1) a state-run primary election; (2) a firehouse primary; (3) a party-run mass meeting; or (4) a convention.  A state-run primary election is an election conducted by the Virginia Board of Elections and administered by the local registrars whereby voters vote at their local polling place in the same manner as in a general election in November.  In a state-run primary election, a voter can only vote in one party’s primary, meaning that you cannot vote in both a Republican and Democratic primary.  A firehouse primary involves meetings at various locations throughout the district where votes are cast for the respective candidates.  A party-run mass meeting is an assembly of voters who support each candidate and vote according to the local rules adopted at the meeting.  A convention is also a party-run process whereby delegates – voters who registered to participate in the convention – decide the nominee for the general election in November.


In House District 42, the Republican Party leadership determined that a Mass Meeting would be used to select the Republican candidate for the District 42 seat.  This meeting will be held at New River Community College on Saturday June 3, 2023. The official call of the Mass Meeting is available at this link:  According to the official call, registration to vote will begin at 11:00 am and will end promptly at 12:30 pm.
Any person in line for the meeting at 12:30 pm will be permitted to enter the meeting and vote for their candidate of choice.
Participants must produce an acceptable form of photo identification.  We recommend your driver’s license, Virginia identification card, or passport.  There is no pre-registration prior to the meeting.  There also is no early voting or absentee voting.  You must appear at the meeting in-person to register to vote and cast your ballot. 


It is important to note that the Virginia General Assembly recognized that mass meetings disenfranchised voters who could not appear on a certain day for a mass meeting, and in 2021 adopted amendments to Virginia Code Section 24.2-509 that outlaw mass meetings effective January 1, 2024.  We again stress that the candidate who receives the most votes at the Mass Meeting will likely be our Delegate that represents Giles County.  There will still be an election in November and the successful candidate will have to receive most votes in that election, but the candidate selected at the June 3, 2023, Mass Meeting at New River Community College may be the only choice on the ballot.

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