x
Breaking News
More () »

What you need to know for North Carolina's primary election

After South Carolina's democratic primary on Saturday, candidates are preparing for Super Tuesday. North Carolina is one of 14 states voting Tuesday.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Saturday's presidential primary in South Carolina shook up the Democratic race for the White House.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, who had disappointing loses in the first three states and was riding a lot on the South Carolina race, finished first ahead of Senator Bernie Sanders, who came into the day riding high from winning the first three state races.

Biden said the "bigger the win, the bigger the bump," as he looked for victory ahead of the primary.  

The former vice president rode a wave of African-American support on Saturday that ended Bernie Sanders’ winning streak and offered badly needed momentum for Biden's unsettled White House bid.  

Sanders, who still has the most pledged delegates, found himself a distant second in South Carolina.

RELATED: Joe Biden wins South Carolina, hoping for Super Tuesday momentum

Third place finisher Saturday Tom Steyer, who had yet to win any delegates, bowed out of the race after Saturday's results.

RELATED: Billionaire Tom Steyer ends Democratic presidential campaign

Steyer said that at this point, “honestly, I can't see a path where I can win the presidency.”

BELOW: Candidates spoke to supporters after Saturday's South Carolina democratic presidential primary election

Steyer's name will remain on the ballot in North Carolina and 13 other states for Super Tuesday. The same is true for Pete Buttigieg, who dropped out of the race Sunday evening.

RELATED: Pete Buttigieg ends Democratic presidential campaign

RELATED: Where will Pete Buttigieg's voters go on Super Tuesday now that he's dropping out?

Monday, Amy Klobuchar announced she was suspending her campaign. Likewise, her name will remain on the ballot although her campaign has ended.

RELATED: Amy Klobuchar drops out of 2020 presidential race

Tuesday sees the largest number of delegates pledged in a single day throughout the primary election cycle.

If you did not participate in early voting in North Carolina, which ended Saturday, here is what you will need to know for Tuesday:

Who's on the ballot?

The following Democratic candidates for president are still running active campaigns:

The following candidates have suspended their campaigns but may still appear on a ballot: Michael Bennet, Cory Booker, Julián Castro, John Delaney, Deval Patrick, Marianne Williamson, Andrew Yang, Tom Steyer, Pete Buttigieg, and Amy Klobuchar.

Presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg was not on the ballot for the South Carolina primary. He will, however, be on the ballots in North Carolina for Super Tuesday.

Where do you go to vote?

Registered voters can look up their polling places. If you live in NC, you can find your polling place here.

The new voting machines use touchscreens, print out a ticket and your bar code is scanned to count your vote. The machines may look a little different, but election officials say they haven't had any problems yet. 

The majority of polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. in North Carolina.

All registered democrats and those registered as unaffiliated will be able to participate. However, voters must cast their ballot at their assigned polling location, according to election officials.

“Tomorrow you do have to vote in your assigned precinct so check your voter card for that," said Kristin Mavromatis, public information manager for the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections. "If you don’t have your voter card, do call our office or go online.” 

Mavromatis said in Mecklenburg County, the busiest times at the polls tend to be between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. -- when many people take a lunch break.

Who all votes on Super Tuesday?

Fifteen jurisdictions hold primary events on Super Tuesday this year. The states are: 

  • Alabama
  • American Samoa
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia

So just how big of an impact will voters in North Carolina have on Super Tuesday? North Carolina will be awarding 110 delegates -- the most delegates behind California and Texas.

“We have 110 delegates to be awarded, now that isn’t a winner-take-all kind of system in North Carolina,” said Dr. Michael Bitzer, professor of politics at Catawba College. “It’s divided up among congressional districts with state-wide awarding of delegates as well. So, it could be a couple of days before we find out who won the bulk of delegates coming out of North Carolina."

Dr. Bitzer says Tuesday is critical to determining who will be in the two-man race toward the delegate count.

“It looks like it’s going to Sanders and Biden, but I think North Carolina votes will basically determine if that is indeed the two-man contest moving forward," he said. "If Bloomberg can capture some delegates, I think that will be a signal."

What about early voting?

Since early voting began on February 13, data shows turnout across North Carolina surged with nearly 800,000 early votes already cast. Elections officials say that’s more than were cast during the last primary in 2016.

“Unfortunately for early voters who might have cast a ballot for Pete Buttigieg, there is no mulligan," Bitzer said. "They cannot go back and redo their vote in tomorrow’s election."

He says early voters are typically very sure of who they want to vote for, but he says if something disastrous happens to their candidate they’re left with basically no vote.

“I think this may call into question about using something called rank-choice voting, where early voters with an entire slate of candidates get the chance to rank… ‘I want to vote for this person first, but if they don’t make it here’s my second choice,’ and so forth and so on,” Bitzer said.

As for when a winner might be declared, Mavromatis says early voting and absentee ballots are the first votes counted.

What happens next?

In order to win on the first ballot at the convention, a democratic candidate would need 1,991 delegates. 

With multiple primaries and caucuses now over, Super Tuesday could potentially be telling for which candidates will stay in the race and which will bow out. 

RELATED: WATCH: Joe Biden speaks after being projected winner of SC Democratic Primary

RELATED: Election security top of mind ahead of primary

Democratic delegates will pick their party's nominee for president in Milwaukee at the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention on July 16.

More than a month later, republican delegates will convene in Charlotte for the Republican National Convention, which begins August 24 and runs through the 27.

RELATED: Should CMPD keep RNC security purchases secret until after the convention?

RELATED: GOP, city leaders finalizing plans for 2020 RNC

If you have a question about where to vote, when to vote or the voting process, you can text the word "VOTE" to 704-329-3600 and WCNC Charlotte will send you a message back with the information you request.