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Despite coronavirus, 2 states are holding GOP primaries Tuesday

But Ohio postponed its primary until June due to Covid-19 concerns.

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Two states — Florida and Illinois — are holding Republican primary contests on Tuesday, and President Donald Trump is certain to win both. He currently leads the delegate count with 1,113 delegates to former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld’s one.

But as with everything else, these primary states are facing the added challenge of counteracting the spread of coronavirus — in Florida, for example, there have been nearly 150 positive cases of the novel coronavirus detected since March 1. Each state is taking action: Florida has moved multiple voting locations to avoid areas where those most vulnerable to the virus (namely older Floridians) would be present. Illinois, which has had more than 90 positive cases of the coronavirus, has moved 168 Chicago-area polling places that were located in senior living facilities, and the state extended early voting hours in Chicago and other areas of the state.

And Ohio, which was supposed to hold its primary on Tuesday, has postponed it until June 2 and closed all polling locations — an order delivered by Ohio health director Dr. Amy Acton to “avoid the imminent threat with a high probability of widespread exposure to COVID-19.”

In Illinois, Trump will face perennial candidate Roque “Rocky” De La Fuente, a San Diego businessman who ran for Senate in nine states in 2018. De La Fuente will also appear on the ballot in Florida, alongside Weld and Joe Walsh, who dropped out of the race in February.

Polls begin closing at 8 pm Eastern, and calls for Trump are likely to roll in quickly.

Vox will be covering the results of the GOP March 17 primaries live, thanks to our friends at Decision Desk.

Below are the states holding GOP primary contests on Tuesday and Trump’s approval rating in each one, according to Morning Consult.


Called for Trump

Trump approval: +3


Called for Trump

Trump approval: -18

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