(CNN)A substantial share of voters turning out to vote in two critical southern Super Tuesday states said they made up their minds about whom to support in the last few days, according to preliminary results from CNN exit polls.
The final days of campaigning before Tuesday’s voting saw upheaval in the race following former Vice President Joe Biden’s victory in South Carolina on Saturday night. Since then, three of the remaining candidates have ended their campaigns, and two of those endorsed Biden.
In Virginia, nearly half of Democratic primary voters said that they made up their minds about whom to support in the last few days before voting. In North Carolina, where about a third of votes were likely cast before today’s voting, nearly 3 in 10 still said they made up their minds in the last few days. About 4 in 10 in each state said they made up their minds before voting began in early February.
In both states, white voters were more likely to say they made up their minds in the last few days than were black voters, including a majority of white voters in Virginia. Most black voters in both states said they had decided on their choice before February.
Majorities in both states said they would prefer a nominee who can beat President Donald Trump over one with whom they agree on the issues. That’s a notable difference between these two southern states and South Carolina.
Virginia and North Carolina both have poll closing times before 8 p.m. ET and will together award over 200 of the 1,344 delegates at stake in Tuesday’s contests, so their results will be the first indicators of whether Biden’s success in South Carolina have boosted his Super Tuesday prospects.
Black voters made up about a quarter of the electorate in Tuesday’s Democratic primaries in both North Carolina and Virginia. That’s about on par with the 2016 results in Virginia, and represents a slight drop in the share of black voters in North Ca