Vermont flag from Wikimedia Commons

Vermont is one of many states (and a territory) that voted on “Super Tuesday”. Senator Bernie Sanders, who is running for president, represents the State of Vermont in the U.S. Senate.

The Vermont Elections Division posted a sample Democratic ballot and a sample Republican ballot. Each candidate is listed with their home state after their name.

Election Information

In Vermont, any person may register to vote in the town of his or her residence who, on Election Day:

  • is a citizen of the United States
  • is a resident of the state of Vermont (and a resident of the town in which you apply to be added to the checklist)
  • has taken, or has previously taken, the Voter’s Oath (formerly called the “Freeman’s Oath”)
  • is 18 years of age or more.

Vermont allows those who are not yet 18 years old, but will become 18 years old before the next election, to register to vote before they are 18. The application will serve as written notice of intent to apply before the deadline for registration. The person’s registration will become active on the day they turn 18. A person under the age of 18 cannot take the Voter’s Oath until after they have turned 18.

Voters in Vermont do not have to register as a Democrat, Republican, Independent, or some other party.

All registered voters can vote in the primary election – but can only vote on one ballot. You will be given a ballot for each of the major parties. You mark one of the ballots and put the remaining unvoted ballots into a discard bin. Which ballot you choose to vote is private and not recorded (except during the presidential primary, when voters must publicly take one ballot or the other, and their choice is recorded on the entrance checklist.)

A person who is homeless can register to vote in the town, and the district within a town, that includes the place that they consider to be their principal dwelling place. The definition of residency applies in the same way to someone who is homeless as it does to persons who own or rent their principal dwelling place.

Town clerks are requires to post a copy of the checklist before each election. In other words, everyone who has registered to vote is considered to be public information. There is an exception, however:

Vermont provides the Safe at Home program that allows anonymity to the applicant.

Each Safe at Home participant is granted the use of a Montpelier post office box address. The substitute address has no relation to the participant’s actual address. All participants use the same post office box as designated by the program. First-class mail and service of process is sent to the post office box and then forwarded, at no cost, to the participants actual location.

Interested participants may apply for program participation at a local domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking program office, or through a statewide victim advocate office.

In other words, people who do not want their name on the publicly available checklist because of domestic violence, sexual abuse, or stalking have the option of having their name removed from the checklist.


First time Voters in Vermont must take the voter’s oath. The oath may be self-administered. A person must be 18 to take the oath.

VOTER’S OATH: “You solemnly swear or affirm that whenever you give your vote or suffrage, touching any matter that concerns the State of Vermont, you will do it so as in your conscience you shall judge will most be conduce to the best good of the same, as established by the Constitution, without fear or favor of any person.” – Vermont Constitution, Chapter II, Section 42

Here is some additional information about the voter’s oath:

If you have previously voted in Vermont, you do not need to take the voter’s oath again. The oath can be administered by a commissioned military officer or by any other person qualified to administer oaths, any person over the age of 18, or by yourself. You may also take the voter’s oath as an affirmation. You must take the oath before voting early or by absentee ballot.

If you are registering for the first time in Vermont using the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) Federal Postcard Application or another form not specific to Vermont, you must take the oath. The Vermont voter registration form and the FVAP instructions contain the voter’s oath that must be taken.

Here is some information about what the Voter’s Oath means:

The oath is unique to Vermont. It was originally required in the 1777 Vermont Constitution. It was known as the “Freeman’s Oath” until the Inclusive Language Revision Amendment of 1994, when it became the Voter’s Oath.” The oath simply says that you will vote your conscience and not let anyone tell you how to vote.


On March 3, 2020, Bernie Sanders tweeted: “We got at least two votes in Vermont. Find your polling place and make sure we get a few more:” The tweet included a link where people could find their poling place. The tweet ended with #VoteForBernie:

The tweet includes two photos of Bernie and Jane Sanders. In the first one, they are seated at what appears to be a voting booth. The space is separated by boards. It sort of looks like a row of privacy desks at a library.

The second photo shows Jane Sanders carrying what might be a ballot and smiling at a seated voter. Bernie Sanders follows her, and reaches out to shake hands with the voter, who is reaching back. Bernie and Jane Sanders are both smiling.

On March 3, 2020, ABC News campaign reporter Averi Harper tweeted: “.@BernieSanders surrounded by press as he leaves his Burlington, VT, polling place after casting his primary ballot.” The tweet includes a video of Bernie Sanders stuck in the middle of a swarm of reporters who are holding cameras, boom mics, and phones.

On March 3, 2020, Rothermere American Institute tweeted: “Larry Sanders (@Sanders4Health) casting his vote for his brother @BernieSanders @RAIOxford this morning #SuperTuesday #Democrats Abroad”.

The tweet showed three photos of Larry Sanders. In one, he is putting his ballot into a box that is decorated with stars and stripes. In another, he is holding his ballot halfway inside the box while looking at the camera. In the third, he is smiling and holding up a fist while holding his ballot halfway inside the ballot box.

On March 3, 2020, the Guardian US chief reporter Ed Pilkington wrote:

Larry Sanders, a Green Party spokesperson in the UK, has been feeling “the Bernard” today.

The Brooklyn-born politician, 84, who has lived in the UK since the late 1960s, has just participated in the Democrats Abroad primary. He voted in Oxford for his younger brother who he calls Bernard, or Bernie to you and me.

“Bernard’s policies are very mainstream,” he told the Oxford Mail outside the polling station.

Asked whether he’d be tempted to move back to the US were his brother to win in November, he replied: “I’d be tempted to visit a lot”…


Controversies

On January 16, 2020, Politico posted an article titled: “Bernie ‘will play dirty’: Ex-Vermont governor slams Sanders”. It was written by Natasha Korecki. From the article:

A former Vermont governor and ex-chair of the Democratic Governors Association is taking aim at Bernie Sanders and his campaign, accusing the senator of trying to “Hillarize” Elizabeth Warren.

In an interview with POLITICO, Peter Shumlin – who has endorsed Joe Biden for president in 2020 and served as Vermont’s governor from 2011 to 2017, while Sanders represented the state in the Senate – warned that Sanders, an independent and a self-described democratic socialist, ultimately did not feel loyalty to Democrats…

…Sanders’ campaign did not respond to a request for comment.

The salvo from Shumlin is the latest reaction to an ongoing spat between Sanders and Warren, two longtime friends who had taken part in a nonaggression pact before entering the 2020 presidential primary. But tensions have been building slowly between the two, coming to a head at Tuesday’s debate, when a hot mic caught Warren asking Sanders after the debate if he was calling her a liar on TV, after he denied saying in an earlier private conversation that a woman could not be elected president…

…And the day after Warren clashed with Sanders following a Democratic debate in DesMoines, #Warrenisasnake was among the hashtags trending on Twitter.

Shumlin accused Sanders of trying to “Hillarize” Warren, saying the senator had cast Hillary Clinton, too, as an elitist, contributing to divisions in the Democratic electorate…

…Shumlin said his critique of Sanders is not sour grapes, noting that Sanders endorsed him and campaigned for him in Vermont. Shumlin also had attempted to enact a single-payer health care system in the state, an effort that ultimately failed…

On February 28, 2020, Seven Days, Vermont’s Independent Voice, posted an article titled: “Vermont Superdelegates Warn Against ‘Stop Sanders’ Machinations”. It was written by Paul Heintz. From the article:

If Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) continues to outperform a crowded field of presidential rivals, he could show up at this summer’s Democratic National Convention with a plurality of delegates – but not the majority he needs to claim the party’s nomination.

That’s prompted some nervous Democrats to consider how they might deny him the nomination and install an alternative, even if he’s favored by more voters. In interviews with 93 party officials this week, The New York Times found that many of them would be “willing to risk intraparty damage” to stop Sanders at the convention.

Several top Vermont Democrats, however, think that would be a bad idea.

“You know, we’ve got to keep our eye on the prize here, and the prize is beating Donald Trump,” U.S. Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) told Seven Days. “If a candidate, including Bernie, clearly demonstrates the broadest support in the primary and then the convention outcome is different, I think that would be a challenge… for our success in November.”

Said state Rep. Mary Sullivan (D-Burlington): “I think it would be a big mistake.”

Welch and Sullivan are among Vermont’s eight “automatic” delegates to the convention – or “superdelegates,” as they are more commonly known. The eight include Vermont’s three members of Congress – Sanders, Welch, and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) – as well as former governor Howard Dean because he served as chair of the Democratic National Committee. They also include state party chair Terje Anderson, vice chair Tess Taylor, and Vermont’s two representatives to the Democratic National Committee: Sullivan and former state representative Tim Jerman…

…In addition to the superdelegates, the state also sends 16 pledged delegates to the convention. They are supposed to, (but not required to) represent the preference of voters as expressed during next Tuesday’s presidential primary in Vermont. Those delegates are chosen at the state party’s convention in May and at a follow up meeting in June.

Due to a rule change orchestrated by Sanders allies after the 2016 election, superdelegates are set to play a diminished role at this summer’s convention in Milwaukee. They will no longer be able to participate in the first round of balloting. But if no candidate emerges from the first round with a majority of 3,979 pledged delegate votes, 771 superdelegates will be able to vote in the second and subsequent rounds of balloting until a candidate attains a majority.

That’s when a “stop Sanders” play could take place, with superdelegates coalescing around an alternative to the pledged delegate leader…


Vermont Endorsements

Bill Weld

On February 17, 2020, Burlington Free Press posted an article titled: “Vermont governor endorses Trump opponent Bill Weld in 2020 presidential primary.” It was written by Ethan Bakull. From the article:

Two weeks ahead of Vermont’s presidential primaries on Super Tuesday (March 3), Gov. Phil Scott has endorsed former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld for 2020 Republican presidential nomination.

“I’m a great admirer of [Gov. Phil Scott] of Vermont,” Weld said in a tweet following the Saturday press conference.

“VT has been well served in the past by Republican governors, and Gov. Scott admirably extends that tradition.”

Gov. Scott has been a vocal critic of President Trump in the past…


Bernie Sanders

February 1, 2020: Politifact posted an article in which they fact-checked a statement made by Senate candidate John Fetterman (Pennsylvania). I am putting this article into this blog because it includes information about those who endorsed Bernie Sanders and who are representing Vermont:

…In Sanders’ home state of Vermont, for example, he has at least three such endorsers: former State Senator Matt Dunne, a gubrnatorial candidate; State Senator David Zuckerman, a candidate for lieutenant governor, and State Auditor Doug Hoffer, who is running to keep his office…

On February 19, 2019, The Hill posted an article titled: “Leahy endorses Sanders for president”. It was written by Michael Burke. From the article:

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Tuesday endorsed his colleague Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) for president, hours after Sanders announced his candidacy.

“We have a strong field of candidates, and Bernie’s entry makes the field even stronger,” Leahy said in a statement. “Bernie and I had a great talk today. I’m proud to support my fellow Vermonter, a proven leader with a strong message.”

Leahy’s endorsement of Sanders comes after he endorsed former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primary rather than Sanders. Sanders also challenged Leahy for his Senate seat decades ago, running on the Liberty Union ticket in 1974, according to the Vermont newspaper Seven Days….

The same article points out that Vermont Representative Peter Welch also endorsed Bernie Sanders.

…In addition to Leahy, Sanders on Tuesday received the endorsement of Vermont Rep. Peter Welch (D), who also supported Sanders in 2016.

“Bernie Sanders is a welcome voice in this campaign,” Welch said in a statement. “He has a proven, powerful, and compelling message of economic fairness and environmental justice that will resonate across America. I will support my friend and fellow Vermonter for president in 2020.”

On February 19, 2020: Advocate posted an article titled: “Bernie Sanders Gets Endorsement of First Trans Gubernatorial Nominee”. It was written by Trudy Ring. From the article:

Christine Halquist, the first out transgender person to be a major party’s nominee for governor, has endorsed U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont for president.

“I was the first transgender major party gubernatorial candidate in the nation,” Hallquist, the Democratic nominee for Vermont governor in 2018, said in a release from the Sanders campaign. “Bernie stood by me and aggressively supported my campaign. I have known and worked with Bernie for decades on rural development, the environment, and now climate change. He is the most honest and consistent leader I have ever worked with. His commitment to LGBTQ folks has been solid and steadfast. Bernie is the only candidate who has consistently supported policies on economic justice. This is especially important to the transgender community, which suffers from high levels of unemployment, low wages, and lack of health care.”…

…Halquist bested three competitors to win the Democratic nomination for Vermont governor in 2018. She lost the election to incumbent Republican Phil Scott, however, by a margin of 55 percent to 40 percent…

March 2, 2020: Politico posted an article titled: “Democracy for America endorses Bernie Sanders”. It was written by David Siders. From the article:

On Monday, the progressive political action committee Democracy for America – a group that wanted Elizabeth Warren to run for president even before she did – announced that it is endorsing Bernie Sanders.

“Bernie has built a powerful multi-racial, multi-generational movement and we’re excited to join the campaign at this critical moment in the Democratic race,” Charles Chamberlain, the group’s chairman, said in a prepared statement. “From Super Tuesday to the Democratic Convention in Milwaukee, we’ll be working every day to make sure Bernie wins the most votes, the most delegates, and the most states.”…

…DFA said Sanders recieved nearly 80 percent of the vote in a membership survey, with more than 38,000 votes cast over an 11-day period.

Sanders said in a prepared statement that he was “proud to have the support of Democracy for America and its grassroots members who know that real change never comes from the top on down but from the bottom on up.”


Joe Biden

On November 11, 2019, VTDigger posted an article titled: “Shumlin endorses Biden for president during private fundraiser” It was written by Kit Norton. From the article:

Former Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, who backed Hillary Clinton for president in 2016, is again rooting against his home-state senator, Bernie Sanders, this time endorsing Joe Biden, who swung through the Green Mountain State in Saturday for private fundraiser in Norwich.

Shumlin introduced the former vice president to a group of about 70 people who attended the event hosted by longtime Democratic Party contributors Jane and Bill Stetson, according to a pool report from Madeleine Rivera of Fox News.

“Of all the people I’ve worked with, Joe Biden stands out to me,” Shumlin said. “He’s the one that can actually bring people together to make things happen.”…

…Shumlin’s endorsement of Biden comes after Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., has received support from a number of prominent Progressive and Democratic public officials in the state – including Attorney General TJ Donovan, Senate leader Tim Ashe, Treasurer Beth Pierce and Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman. Ashe and Zuckerman previously worked for the senator…


Results

On March 3, 2020, The Associated Press tweeted: “BREAKING: Bernie Sanders wins the Democratic presidential primary in Vermont. #APracecall at 7:17 p.m. EST #Election2020 #VTPrimary”

On March 3, 2020, NBC News tweeted: “BREAKING: Sen. Bernie Sanders wins Vermont Democratic Primary, NBC News projects.” The tweet included a link to the NBC News website where it showed the Vermont results.

The tweet also includes a photo of Bernie Sanders. The word Vermont is above the photo. There is a yellow box with a check mark next to the photo.

Bernie Sanders responded to the tweet with a tweet of his own: “Thank you Vermont! It is an honor to be your senator. Let’s go forward and transform the country together.”

The Guardian posted the results of the Vermont 2020 Democratic Primary with 100% of precincts voting. Its source is the Associated Press.

  • Bernie Sanders: 79,980 votes – 50.68%
  • Joe Biden: 34,734 votes – 22.01%
  • Elizabeth Warren: 19,815 votes – 12.54%
  • Michael Bloomberg: 14,843 votes – 9.41%
  • Pete Buttigieg: 3,714 votes – 2.35%
  • Amy Klobuchar: 2,165 votes – 1.37%
  • Tulsi Gabbard: 1,300 votes – 0.82%
  • Andrew Yang: 588 votes – 0.37%
  • Tom Steyer: 205 votes – 0.13%
  • Deval Patrick: 166 votes – 0.11%
  • Marianne Williamson: 144 votes – 0.09%
  • Mark Greenstein: 107 votes – 0.07%
  • Julian Castro: 53 votes – 0.03%

Ballotpedia reported that the Vermont Democratic Party has 16 pledged delegates to allocate.

  • Bernie Sanders: 11
  • Joe Biden: 5
  • Everyone else: 0

The Guardian posted the results of the Vermont 2020 Republican Primary with 100% of precincts voting. Its source is the Associated Press.

  • Donald Trump: 34,000 votes – 88.73%
  • Bill Weld: 3,972 votes – 10.37%
  • Roque De La Fuente: 347 votes – 0.91%

Ballotpedia reported that the Vermont Republican Party has 17 pledged delegates to allocate. All of them went to Donald Trump.

What Happened in the 2020 Vermont Primary is a post written by Jen Thorpe on Book of Jen and is not allowed to be copied to other sites.

If you enjoyed this blog post please consider supporting me on PayPal.me. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *