Everything You Need to Know About Election Season Before November

When the Democratic party’s front-runners face off in the next debate in Nevada on Wednesday, Feb. 19, viewers can expect Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders; former South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg; Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, and other key candidates to once again double down on how they’d plan to tackle key issues like health care, reproductive rights, gun control, and the economy as president of the United States.

While there are still months to go until Election Day, the aftermath of the disastrous Iowa Caucuses earlier this month—namely, the lack of a clear winner during what’s traditionally the first contest to predict the party’s future front-runner—means that the upcoming debates and state primaries are more important than ever before to determine who will be the left’s nominee to challenge President Trump come November.

Viewers can also expect to see some different faces on the stage during the Feb. 19 debate compared to previous ones. For one, the DNC decided to move forward with eliminating the donor threshold that had previously been in place for previous debates (candidates were required to meet both donor and polling thresholds to qualify to appear on stage), according to Politico.

Currently Biden, Warren, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Sanders are expected to attend, in addition to breakout candidate and billionaire Michael Bloomberg, who was previously unable to participate in the Democratic debates because he is self-funding his presidential campaign.

It’s a lot to take in, which is why The Everygirl is putting together a useful checklist to look back on as we get closer to Election Day. From upcoming debate dates to finding information on the candidates, here’s everything to know about election season as we count down to Nov. 3.


Following the Jan. 14 debate in Iowa and the Feb. 7 debate in New Hampshire, voters can expect to tune into a few more debates in the spring.

In addition to the debate in Las Vegas, which will be hosted by NBC News and MSNBC on Feb. 19, viewers can expect to see candidates debate key issues in South Carolina‘s Gaillard Center on Feb. 25. This debate will be put on by CBS News and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute in partnership with Twitter, according to The Post and Courier.

As Time reported, the DNC is planning to put on two more debates in March and April, so voters should keep an eye out for more exact dates, as well as more information on which candidates will be heading on stage as we get closer to spring.


Super Tuesday (aka Tuesday, March 3) will be an especially important day for primaries.

Some states, including California, will be moving up their primaries to that day. Here are when each primary or caucus will be held, as well as each major party’s convention, and of course, Election Day itself:

Feb. 22: Nevada Democratic caucus

Feb. 29: South Carolina Democratic primary

March 3: Alabama, American Samoa, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Democrats Abroad

March 10: Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Washington

March 14: Northern Marianas Democratic convention

March 17:  Arizona Democratic primary, Florida, Illinois, Northern Marianas Republican caucus, Ohio

March 24: American Samoa Republican caucus and Georgia

March 29: Puerto Rico Democratic primary

April 4: Alaska Democratic primary, Hawaii Democratic primary, Louisiana, Wyoming Democratic caucuses

April 7: Wisconsin

April 28: Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island

May 2: Guam Democratic caucus, Kansas Democratic primary

May 5: Indiana

May 7: Wyoming Republican state convention

May 12: Nebraska, West Virginia

May 19: Kentucky, Oregon

June 2: District of Columbia, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, South Dakota

June 6: Virgin Islands Democratic caucuses

June 7: Puerto Rico Republican primary

July 13 through July 16: Democratic National Convention

Aug. 24 through Aug. 27: Republican National Convention

Nov. 3: Election Day


To vote in your state’s primary, you’ll need to make sure that you’re registered.

Check to see if you’re registered to vote by heading to https://www.nass.org/can-I-vote and entering your information. Make sure you check as soon as possible so that you know if you’ll be eligible to vote in primaries or in the general election in November. If you need to find out how to register, head to https://vote.gov/ and fill out your information, such as your name, party affiliation, and address there.

Another option is to fill out the National Mail Voter Registration Form and mail it to the address listed for your state. Last but not least, you can also register to vote in person by visiting your closest election office. You can see Business Insider’s chart listing the deadlines for registering to vote here. Some states allow in-person registration on Election Day, so if you’re worried about missing the deadline, check to see if your state is among the ones that do.

Depending on if your state is holding a partisan or non-partisan primary, you’ll have two choices: You’ll either be able to vote for any of the candidates regardless of political affiliation or, in the case of a partisan primary, you’ll only be able to vote among the options that are on the ballot for your political party.


While the differences between the different Democratic candidates are slim compared to those with President Trump, there are some slight variations when it comes to their views on issues like health care, gun control, the economy, foreign policy, and reproductive rights.

Ahead of the state primaries, voters can head to OnTheIssues.org to educate themselves and what the candidates’ official stances are on important issues, as well as their voting record on the topic.