Methodology:The VPAP Index ranks each of Virginia's state legislative and congressional
districts based on the estimated performance of the 2021 gubernatorial candidates in each district. The results are expressed
as the gap between Republican and Democratic performance. For instance, "+15-R" means that Republican Glenn Youngkin finished 15 percentage
points ahead of Democrat Terry McAuliffe.
The Index is based on estimated results. Estimation is necessary because election officials do not publish gubernatorial results
by legislative district. Calculating the result by legislative district is possible but requires complete precinct-level results. But
elevated early voting — one in three ballots cast — means that complete precinct results are unavailable in most Virginia
localities. (Early votes were tabulated in a centralized system at a locality level. Most localities
could not reallocate the early votes back to the geographic precincts where voters live.)
VPAP developed a method to reallocate absentee votes back to precincts. We compared our results
with other methods and concluded that ours produces a reasonably accurate estimate of results by legislative and
congressional districts. Details about our methodology.
As with any estimate, there is a level of imprecision. Our display makes it clear which districts
are based solely on actual results and which ones rely on estimates.