NORFOLK, Va. - With a week until voters head to the polls in Virginia and North Carolina, the campaigns are making stops in Hampton Roads.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) will make a stop in Virginia Beach on Saturday. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) is holding an event at the Oceanfront on Tuesday evening.
Still, a new poll shows people in Virginia aren't thrilled with the choices for the Democratic nominee. Roanoke College surveyed 520 people and found each of the six Democrats in their poll leads Donald Trump in Virginia, but the more well-known candidates, like Sanders, are viewed more unfavorably than favorably.
Old Dominion University Professor Dr. Ben Melusky says Tuesday night's debate airing on News 3 and Saturday's primary in South Carolina will set the stage for what happens here. "It comes down to - is Sanders going to over perform on Saturday? And will he have the front runner status leading into Super Tuesday?" he said.
Recent trends suggest Sanders is in the driver's seat to win the nomination with wins in the popular votes in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada.
Fundraising numbers from the Virginia Public Access Project show Sanders has outraised his opponents in Virginia over the past two months, but still trails overall to Joe Biden in terms of fundraising.
Meanwhile, Michael Bloomberg continues his ad blitz and he will appear on the ballot for the first time next week. "Will [the ads] really resonate and reach out to the electorate and impact him on Super Tuesday? It's yet to be seen," said Melusky.
Regardless of who winds up being the nominee, the General Election is expected to be intense. "Indicators that would typically evaluate presidents in terms of re-election chances - Trump is doing well in those indicators," said Melusky.
It's also still very early with plenty of delegates up for grabs to win the nomination. "Are most voters paying attention to these debates? Not really," said Melusky.