May 2019 News and Notes

We hope that all of you who are interested in political action this month will take a  break from theTV news and come out to be with Democrats and help us make news in 2019-2020! Our calendar appears below, with date and location for three scheduled meetings and a couple of other interesting events. The business meeting for members and visitors seeking membership is Monday May 13, our Breakfast with Democrats at Golden Corral is Saturday May 18, and our TN-VA Social with Tennessee, Virginia, and regional Democrats.

News from our April meeting:

  • Chairman Carl Williams distributed information on current officeholders and a calendar of upcoming elections
  • Carl also provided an updated 2020 Democratic candidate bracket
  • Circuit Court Clerk Kelly Duffy described her work, which requires over 800 statutory duties. Recently she worked with an archivist from the Library of VA to preserve documents from before 1913 (pre-Bristol) into a digital format. Much of her work involves issuing deeds and handgun permits, in addition to court proceedings. Kelly informed us that the circuit court is now capable of receiving online payments.
  • The committee welcomed one new visitor. Visitors are welcome, and we hope to build membership to support candidates in the upcoming elections in 2019 and 2020.
  • As usual, we attended to ordinary business and treasurers report information. For those unable to attend who wish to contribute, we receive mail at  Bristol VA Democratic Committee, P.O. Box 17452, Bristol, VA 24209-7452 or you can contribute on line through Act Blue using the link on the top right.

Events to remember:

  • Historic District Preservation Awards ceremony for the City of Bristol, VAThursday, May 16, at 1:00 p.m. at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum. Thank you to Catherine Brillhart for reminding us of this important Bristol event.
  • GOP Primary Tuesday, June 11. Polls will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Absentee voting for the Primary is now in progress 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the office of Penny Limburg, Director of Elections and General Registrar of Voters, at City Hall, 300 Lee Street, Bristol Virginia.

Here is our Bristol Virginia Democratic Committee (BVDC) Regular Calendar for May 2019: 

  • Committee Meeting, Monday, May 13th, at 7:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse, 497 Cumberland St., in Bristol, VA. Democrats registered to vote in Bristol Virginia are represented by the committee, and are encouraged to attend and become involved in committee activities.
  • Breakfast with Democrats, Saturday, May 18th, at 9:00 a.m. at the Golden Corral, Exit 7 in Bristol, VA. Guests are welcome. Attendees pay individually for breakfast. Come and join us for coffee and conversation!
  • TN-VA State Line Social, Monday, May 20th, at around 5:00 p.m. at the State Line Bar and Grille, 644 E. State St., Bristol, TN, 37620. This is an informal meeting of Democrats, Attendees order and pay individually. Progressives, Liberals, and our political friends and cousins from both Bristols and the surrounding area are invited.

Hope to see you in May!


Thank you to everyone who attended the 2017 Reorganization yesterday evening. We now have our membership for the 2018-2019 term. Our new Chair is Carl Williams, and Bernard Via is returning as Vice Chair. It is still possible to join the committee during the term by attending a regular meeting and submitting a membership form.

Q & A on Reorganization at BVDC

Current members of the BVDC hope that local Democrats will attend the 2017 Reorganization and become members or renew their membership. We especially need new members at this time. If you are a voter in Bristol Virginia who wants to work with us, please come and take part in the Reorganization. It is at this local level that you can have the most effect in local, state, and national politics. New members will be eligible to be nominated as committee officers in January and to apply as delegates to state and national conventions where future nominees for office are elected.

Here is information on exactly what the Reorganization is and how it works:

  1. What is the Reorganization? In local Democratic committees, the Reorganization Caucus, a mass meeting where old memberships are renewed and new members are accepted, happens every two years. New officers will be elected at the next regular committee meeting, in January of the new year, or if time is available and nominations are ready, at a called meeting immediately following the Reorganization Caucus.
  2. What is special about this particular Reorganization? The new and continuing members and officers elected will serve during 2018-2019, will be on board for the presidential election year activities, and will be able to apply to represent the committee at the state and national conventions.
  3. What if I am not a Democrat? You do not have to be (or become) a member of the BVDC or any Democratic Committee to be a Democrat. In Virginia, it is impossible for you to be a registered Democrat, because voter registration is not by party affiliation. We understand you to be a Democrat if you believe as we do in human rights, economic justice, equality under the law, education, health insurance and health care, gender equality, conservation and environmental issues, and several other important issues related to how government is supposed to work for people. As the BVDC, we represent at local, regional, state, and federal all people who share our perspective in these issues who reside in our city. You don’t have to agree with us on everything, and we sometimes have lively discussions among ourselves on the issues. However, as a group, we have respect for people, data, science, history, and government that works for people. You are welcome to join, or just to visit, contribute, and work with us for these important shared goals.
  4. How can I get the details and participation form? Read, download, and submit the Participation form or attend the Caucus. Read the details here: Call to Caucus and the Participation form
  5. When is the Reorganization? It will be at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse, 497 Cumberland St., Bristol, Virginia. The location is ADA accessible. Registration begins at 6:00 p.m. Doors will close at 6:30 p.m., but all persons standing in line to register at 6:30 will be admitted for registration.
  6. What will happen at the Reorganization? Democrats residing in Bristol Virginia will come to the meeting, fill out a registration form, introduce themselves, and be voted in as members of the BVDC. After members are elected, the agenda for the January meeting will be distributed and the Reorganization Caucus will be adjourned. You can download the Caucus Temporary Rules and Agendas. The rules and agendas are temporary, and may be amended at the caucus by the newly-elected members before becoming the permanent Rules and Agendas.
  7. Who is invited to the Reorganization? All Democrats who registered to vote in Bristol Virginia are invited and encouraged to attend. (You can register to vote at City Hall, 300 Lee St, Bristol Virginia. Go in the front door and turn left, and you will see the window of General Registrar Penny Limburg’s office. Go to the window, and someone will assist you with voter registration.)
  8. What does the BVDC do? We have regular monthly business meetings, at which voting members are expected to attend. We also have a monthly social at the State Line Bar and Grill on State Street,attended by Democrats from Tennessee and surrounding Virginia locations along with BVDC members and friends. We have a monthly breakfast at the Golden Corral in Bristol, where guests and visiting speakers are invited. We open a local headquarters during presidential election years, make phone calls to voters, distribute literature, set up a booth at Border Bash, participate in Ninth Congressional District, State, and national party events and initiatives, and work together to keep up with the issues, find people who are interested in running for elected office, and help Democrats get elected to office.
  9. How can I find out more about the BVDC? Visit our Facebook page (“Bristol Virginia Democratic Committee”), or attend Reorganization or any announced meeting, social, or breakfast, using dates available on our Calendar. You can place your name on our e-mail newsletter distribution by sending a request to

Reorganization 2017

The Bristol Virginia Democratic Committee invites Democrats registered to vote in Bristol Virginia to a Caucus for Reorganization on December 11th, 2017, at 6:00 p.m. at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse. Details here. New and returning members will be elected to the committee for membership during the period from January 2018 through December 2019.

Our Calendar for June 2017

The Primary Election: 
  • Mark your calendar to vote in the Democratic primary, Tuesday, June 13, 2017! That is next week, so don’t forget! 
  • If you can’t be here to vote on the 13th, you can vote absentee during regular business hours this week, M-F, 8:00 – 5:00, or on Saturday from 8:00 to 5:00, at the Registrar’s Office at City Hall on Lee Street in Bristol. Thank you to General Registrar Penny Limburg for staying open so folks can vote on Saturday the 10th!
  • For Governor: Lt. Governor Ralph Northam and Tom S. Perriello are  both seeking nomination for Governor. Both are excellent candidates! Take a look at their information in advance of the voting on Tuesday, June 13th to make your decision.
  • For Lt. Governor: Justin E. Fairfax, Gene J. Rossi, and Susan S. Platt, again all good candidates. Their platforms are a bit different, so take a few minutes to look at them and make your decision.
  • Attorney General Mark Herring, who’s record of success for Virginia citizens is excellent, is running for re-election. He is unopposed in the Primary, so he will not be on the Primary ballot, but will need your vote in the General Election later!
Border Bash is under way in downtown Bristol
  • Check our on-line calendar at to see the dates and locations. These occur on Friday evenings in the summer, and you can come downtown in Bristol to enjoy the vendors, food, and free music! The Bristol Virginia Democrats will be present from 6:30 to about 8:30 – we will talk with visitors and distribute information until it gets dark, and then we will close up and go listen to the band!
Our regular meetings this month:
  • June 12th: Our Committee Meeting, Monday June 12th, at 7:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse, 497 Cumberland St., in Bristol, VA. 
  • June 17th: Our breakfast is Saturday, June 17th, at 9:00 a.m. at the Golden Corral, Exit 7 in Bristol. Good conversation, no agenda. Attendees pay separately for breakfast. Join us in the reserved meeting room. Tell the cashier that you are with the Democrats for directions to the meeting space.
  • June 19th: The TN-VA Democratic Social is at the State Line Bar and Grille in downtown Bristol Monday, June 19th, at around 5:00 p.m. This is a social event for Democrats and friends in the surrounding area. It is a good way to meet Democrats on the Committee and talk about the issues.
Remember! June 13 is Primary Day! 
Polls will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Vote!

Caucus cancelled, nominees announced

The Nominating Caucus scheduled for May 18th at 6:30 p.m. has been cancelled. Our candidates for nomination at the deadline for filing with us at 4:00 today have been named our Nominees. We are happy to announce the nomination of Cloe Eva Barker for Commissioner of the Revenue, and Joe R. Mink for Sheriff. Our candidates will be on the ballot November 7, 2017, and we encourage Bristol residents to come out and vote for them! We will have more information about them posted soon!

Here is our calendar for May!

Here is our calendar for May. Lots of work to do, so make this the month that you come out to one of our events and say hello!

Our regular meetings this month:

  • May 8 – Our Committee Meeting, Monday May 8th, at 7:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse, 497 Cumberland St., in Bristol, VA. We will have information about the Nominating Caucus for the Nov. 7, 2017 election.  Folks interested in runningfor Constitutional Offices and voting members please attend!
  • May 15 – The TN-VA Democratic Social is at the State Line Bar and Grille in downtown Bristol Monday, May 15th, at around 5:00 p.m. This is an informal social gathering of Democrats and friends from Bristol and Sullivan County TN and Bristol VA and the surrounding area.
  • May 20 – Our breakfast is Saturday, May 20th at 9:00 a.m. at the Golden Corral, Exit 7 in Bristol. Good conversation, no agenda. Attendees pay separately for breakfast, and join us in the reserved meeting room. Tell the cashier that you are with the Democrats for directions to the meeting space.

Special this month: Caucus for nomination of candidates for Constitutional Offices in Bristol that are on the ballot for the November 7, 2017 General Election. These include Sheriff, Commonwealth’s Attorney, Treasurer, and Commissioner of the Revenue.

  • May 17 – Deadline at 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 17, 2017, for turning in Candidate forms for the Nominating Caucus on Thursday, May 18. Instructions for submission of this form are available using the Call to Caucus tab on the menu above.
  • May 18 – Nominating Caucus Thursday, May 18th, 2017 – All Democrats registered to vote in the City of Bristol, VA, are invited to attend the Bristol Virginia Democratic Committee Caucus at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for registration and close promptly at 7:00 p.m. Persons in line to register at 7:00 p.m. will be admitted for registration, and the Caucus will assemble when registrations are completed.
  • More information along with Participant and Candidate for Nomination forms are available using the Call to Caucus tab.

Also Special this month: Absentee voting has already begun for the June 13th Primary Election.

We need to select our candidate for Governor and Lt. Governor, so this is important! Stop by the Registrar’s Office (City Hall, on Lee Street) and vote if you are not going to be here in Bristol to vote on June 13th. Hope that you are following the candidates and making a decision about the Primary. If there is any part of the process that you have questions about, or if you need information on the candidates, contact us!

Dates for the Primary:

  • Ongoing through May – Absentee Voting for the June Primary. If you will be unable to come to the polls on Primary Day June 13th, stop by the Registrar’s Office at City Hall, 300 Lee Street, Bristol, VA., and complete an application to vote absentee. Make sure your vote is counted.
  • May 22 – Close of registration for the Primary. If you want to vote in the June Primary, your registration must be received by the Registrar, or postmarked if sent by mail, by close of business at 5:00 p.m. on May 22.
  • June 6 – Deadline to request a mail absentee ballot. The Absentee application must be received by the Registrar by closing at 5:00 p.m. on June 6.
  • June 10 – Last day to vote absentee in-person at the Registrar’s Office in Bristol. The office will be open 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • June 13 – Primary Day! Polls will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Hope to see all members at the May Committee meeting, and many more friends and supporters at Breakfast and at the Social!

Caucus Tomorrow

The deadline for candidate filings having passed, we have 4 candidates for the two delegate positions, and will have the Caucus tomorrow.

Please read the Call to Caucus carefully so that your registration and filing are accurate and on time.

Please read the Call to Caucus carefully so that your registration and filing are accurate and on time. Here are the registration and pre-filing highlights, but read the Call at 2017BVDCCall_Delegates_to9th for complete information!

  • Both forms may be downloaded, but must bear an original signature to be valid.
  • The Participant form, 2017participant_9th can be filled out at the Caucus. If you want to complete it and e-mail it early, I will print it and have it at the Registration table for you to sign. It is not valid without an original signature!
  • The Candidate form, 2017candidate_9th has a deadline at 4:00 on the day before the Caucus, and must be received according to the instructions in the Call, 2017BVDCCall_Delegates_to9th. You have to complete and pre-file this form to have your name on the ballot as a candidate for Delegate to the Ninth District Convention.

Call to Caucus

Democrats registered to vote in Bristol, VA, are invited to caucus at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 27th, 2017, at the Bristol Virginia Courthouse, 497 Cumberland St., Bristol, VA. At the Caucus, we will elect two (2) delegates to the 2017 Reorganization Convention of the Ninth Congressional District Democratic Committee, currently scheduled for May 20th, 2017.

Registration begins at 6:30 p.m. Doors will close at 7:00 p.m., and persons in line to register at 7:00 p.m. will be admitted for registration. The Caucus will begin when registrations are completed.

Only those present and registered at the caucus will be permitted to vote in the selection of delegates.

If you want to be a delegate, you must pre-file a candidate application. Delegates will be chosen by secret ballot from those who have pre-filed an Application for Election as Delegate to 2017 Reorganization Convention of the Ninth Congressional District Democratic Committee. This application form can be viewed/saved as a .pdf file under the Call to Caucus tab on the menu above. Completed Applications must be returned with all information and original signature according to the instructions in the Call to Caucus, with a submission deadline of 4:00 p.m. April 26th, the day before the Caucus.

This Caucus will be cancelled if the number of pre-filed candidates is equal to two (2) at the submission deadline, and the two candidates will be declared Delegates.