Editor’s note: This is a live account of Election Day updates from Tuesday, Nov. 3, as the day unfolded. It is no longer being updated. Click here to see all the most recent news about the election.
Today is Election Day.
We’re posting live updates on candidates, voting and results in Washington and across the U.S. National results have been rolling in since 3 p.m. Pacific Time, when polls began to close on the East Coast. Washington state results began arriving after 8 p.m.
Jump to: Live updates
What to know in Washington:
- Voting has ended. Here’s how to see whether your ballot has been accepted, and here’s a peek inside the counting process in King County.
- In Washington, vote counting continues for days. Here’s what to expect, along with a behind-the-scenes look at how we declare winners.
What to know across the U.S.:
- Here’s an hour-by-hour guide to what to look for on Election Day, along with a Q&A on what the nation might know and when.
- Beware of premature declarations of victory. This year’s count may take longer than usual, so we might not know who the next president is tonight — or anytime soon. In fact, we have never had final results on Election Day.
Jump to: Gov. Inslee defeats Culp | Sex education referendum approved | Ferguson wins attorney general race | Demonstrations in Seattle | King County turnout | Election Day anxiety | Election resources
How long is this going to take? Americans settle in to wait
They warned us. They said it would not be over right away. They said it could take days for all the votes to be counted. They told us to wait for the slow gears of democracy to grind toward a conclusion.
Or, as Ian Dunt, a British political journalist, said on Twitter: “There’s not enough booze in all the world for sitting through the American election results.”
As Tuesday night wore on and it became clear that what each side had hoped for — a definitive win that would end this election for good — was unlikely to materialize, it was important to remember what Jim Kenney, the mayor of Philadelphia, had asked of his city before Election Day began: “Patience.”
“After the polls close, and in the ensuing days, we will continue to need your patience,” he wrote in an open letter to his city. “Never in the history of this city have so many people voted by mail. By law, staffers are not allowed to start opening and counting these ballots until Election Day itself.”
AP: Presidential race too early to call
WASHINGTON — The Associated Press is not calling the presidential race yet because neither candidate has secured the 270 electoral college votes needed to claim victory.
Republican Donald Trump said, “Frankly, we did win this election” over Democrat Joe Biden and said he would take the election to the Supreme Court. His assertion of victory does not match the results and information currently available to the AP.
At this stage in the race, according to AP counts, Trump has 213 electoral votes while Biden has 225. Trump would need 270 electoral votes to win. Several key states are too early to call, including Pennsylvania, Georgia and Michigan.
Read more for an alphabetical state-by-state look at how and why The Associated Press has called U.S. states in the 2020 presidential election. More states will be added as they are called.
The Associated Press calls Arizona for Joe Biden
Joe Biden has won Arizona, according to The Associated Press.
Biden receives 11 electoral votes from the state, which was won by President Donald Trump in the 2016 election. AP called the race at 11:52 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.
Still to be called are other battleground states, including Georgia, North Carolina, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Trump speaks at White House
President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are speaking at the White House as ballot counting continues. Watch live here:
GOP holds back Democrats, narrowing path to Senate control
The battle for power in the Senate tightened into Wednesday as Democrats picked up a seat in Colorado, but suffered a setback in Alabama, and Republicans held their own in high-profile races in South Carolina, Iowa, Texas and Kansas, dramatically narrowing the political map.
Republicans fought to retain their Senate majority by turning back a surge of Democrats challenging allies of President Donald Trump, and the Democrats’ various paths to seizing control were growing more limited. With several contests still too early to call, and one Georgia race heading to a January runoff, the final verdict is expected to drag on.
Democrats gained a seat when ex-Gov. John Hickenlooper ousted GOP Sen. Cory Gardner in Colorado, a must-win to flip the Senate, but couldn’t hold on in Alabama, where former college football coach Tommy Tuberville beat Sen. Doug Jones .
At the same time, several battlegrounds broke for Republicans: South Carolina, where White House ally Lindsey Graham survived the race of his political career against Jamie Harrison; Texas, as Sen. John Cornyn turned back former Air Force helicopter pilot MJ Hegar; Kansas, with Rep. Roger Marshall prevailing over state Sen. Barbara Bollier, a former Republican who energized Democrats in a state that hasn’t elected a Democrat to the Senate since 1932; and Iowa, where Sen. Joni Ernst defeated Democrat Theresa Greenfield in a race seen as a toss-up.
Pellicciotti leads incumbent Davidson in race for Washington state treasurer
Mike Pellicciotti led Washington state Treasurer Duane Davidson in Tuesday night returns, as the Democratic challenger sought to unseat the Republican incumbent.
Pellicciotti had 56% of the vote, with all but two counties reporting initial results. Were Pellicciotti to hang on, he would be only the second candidate in 25 years to defeat an incumbent statewide official in a partisan re-election campaign, he noted in a news release.
Pat McCarthy, the Democratic incumbent state auditor, led challenger Chris Leyba in Tuesday night counts, while Mike Kreidler, the Democratic incumbent state insurance commissioner, led challenger Chirayu Avinash Patel.
In state Supreme Court races, incumbents Raquel Montoya-Lewis and G. Helen Whitener held leads.
In other states: $15 minimum wage, gig worker benefits, abortion measures
Voters across the country were presented with state ballot measures this year on issues ranging from employment law to abortion.
Florida voters approved gradually raising the state's minimum wage to $15, becoming the eighth state to do so, according to the Miami Herald.
In California, Uber and Lyft were receiving favorable results Tuesday night on a proposition to treat workers as independent contractors, rather than as employees under state law. But it's too soon to tell if the companies will be successful in their ballot measure battle, which has been the most expensive in state history, according to the Los Angeles Times.
In Colorado, a ban on later-term abortions was defeated in Tuesday night's results, according to The Denver Post. Meanwhile, voters in Louisiana approved an amendment to the state constitution that would ensure it was anti-abortion if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, according to The Advocate.
Trump wins Texas, votes in other key states likely to take time
President Donald Trump is the winner in Texas, the Associated Press and Fox News have called.
The state was considered an important battleground, with 38 electoral votes, although it hasn't voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1976.
Eyes are now turned to other key states, including Georgia, North Carolina, Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Counts in the latter three states are likely to take some time, as officials there were restricted in how soon they could process early votes.
Biden: 'We're feeling good about where we are'
Joe Biden is speaking in Wilmington, Delaware, where he says he is optimistic he will win the presidential election.
View the livestream here.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump posted a tweet for the first time this evening, then posted another saying he would be making a statement tonight. The tweet was flagged by Twitter as potentially misleading.
Chris Reykdal reelected as Washington state superintendent of public instruction
Chris Reykdal won reelection over challenger Maia Espinoza on Tuesday in one of the most politically divided races for Washington state schools chief in recent memory.
Reykdal held an insurmountable lead over Espinoza — 57% to 43% in Tuesday’s vote count — with all but a handful of counties reporting results.
He will serve four more years as the superintendent of public instruction, leading the state agency that distributes funding to school districts and provides critical guidance to schools about how to adapt during the pandemic.
Reykdal promised to bring more funding to school districts, especially for technology, and to increase the number of students receiving college credit while still in school and expand access to dual language programs.
Some key states go to Trump, Biden tells supporters to 'keep the faith'
The presidential race is being called in key states, with President Donald Trump declared the winner in Florida, Iowa and Ohio.
The results aren't a total surprise. Trump won Ohio in 2016, although Democrats did well there in 2018 Congressional elections, and Minnesota has voted for Democrats in every presidential election since 1976, according to Bloomberg.
Despite the losses in Iowa and Ohio, Biden told supporters to "keep the faith" in a live-streamed remark from Delaware, adding that he felt good about Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Sex education Referendum 90 approved
Washington school districts will be required to teach sexual health education to most students under a referendum that was well ahead in Tuesday’s vote count.
Voters were approving Referendum 90 in early returns,with nearly 60% favoring the measure. The referendum marks the first time nationwide that a sex education mandate has appeared on a statewide ballot.
“It tells us that the majority of Washingtonians are showing really resounding support for comprehensive sex education and that is really, really good news for Washington’s young people,” said Courtney Normand, Washington state director of Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii, who led the campaign.
By approving the measure, voters signaled that a 2020 law should go into effect making lessons mandatory starting in kindergarten, though families could choose to opt out.
Two election night groups of demonstrators march through Seattle
Two groups of demonstrators have taken to the streets in Seattle, and police temporarily closed ramps to Interstate 5 and issued public safety warnings about groups taking to the streets and blocking traffic.
A group from Cascade Park was moving south on Fairview and Harrison. Police posted on social media that officers have issued several public safety warnings to the group.
Speakers throughout one upbeat march in South Lake Union said neither presidential candidate – Donald Trump or Joe Biden – would do enough to protect the lives of Black people, Indigenous people and people of color, but emphasized the hard-fought right to vote.
They repeated the demands they’ve chanted all summer to defund the Seattle Police Department and invest in Black-led community organizations.
One marcher, who identified herself only by her first name, Angelica, due to safety concerns, wore a bright red jacket with “[Expletive] Donald Trump” on the back as she marched. “As a Black person I was not comfortable voting for either (candidate),” she said, citing Biden’s history on issues like the 1994 crime bill. Whoever wins, “it’s going be the same for me. I’m still going to get followed in the store. … I’m still going to get put in a redlined community,” she said. A friend made Angelica the jacket long before Election Day, she said. “I had it already.”
Shortly before 8 p.m., another group of roughly 100 demonstrators dressed in black met at Cal Anderson Park. A few debated the merits of voting (“Biden is the better enemy,” one said) before setting off down Denny Hill into South Lake Union. A large group of police officers in bikes, on foot, and in cars followed.
There was at least one arrest in Belltown, before the group turned east on Mercer Street, headed toward the freeway onramp. The group, which grew to 250 to 300 people as the march continued, moved east on Mercer, while the police issued a warning against entering the freeway.
Seattle Police said the group was placing barricades in the roadway, including nails.
A driver "associated with the protest" was arrested; police said they drove over a barricade and through an SPD bike line at Fairview Avenue North and Harrison Street. No one was injured. Later, another person was arrested who police said had damaged a parking meter with a hammer.
Levy to upgrade Kirkland fire, emergency medical services well ahead
A measure to fund fire and emergency medical services and to upgrade firehouses in Kirkland was well ahead with nearly 73% of Tuesday’s vote count.
Proposition 1 would increase the property tax levy to about 24 cents per $1,000 of assessed home value. That means the owner of a home valued at $750,000, the median value in Kirkland, would pay an additional $171 in 2021.
If approved, the levy would generate about $7.3 million per year, according to the city. About half the money would go toward building a fire station north of EvergreenHealth Medical Center and upgrading stations 21, 22 and 26.
The building, Fire Station 27, would house eight firefighters and emergency medical technicians.
The city also would hire 20 firefighters and EMTs and increase its supply of personal protective equipment, such as N95 masks and gloves.
Kim Schrier and Jaime Herrera Beutler lead in Congressional races
Incumbent congresspeople were leading in Washington state's 3rd and 8th Districts in Tuesday night counts, despite spirited opposition.
Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler had 54% of votes counted in the 3rd, though Klickitat County results were not yet in, while in the 8th, Democratic Rep. Kim Schrier also had 54% , not including the Chelan County vote.
Chopp, Harris-Talley and Berry lead in Seattle state House races
Three closely-watched state House races in Seattle had clear leaders in Tuesday night counts.
In the 43rd Legislative District, former Democratic House Speaker Frank Chopp led in Tuesday counts with 67% of the vote against Sherae Lascelles of the Seattle Peoples Party.
In an open-seat 36th Legislative District race, Liz Berry led with 58% over Sarah Reyneveld.
And in another open-seat race, in the 37th Legislative District, Kirsten Harris-Talley led Chukundi Salisbury with 67%.
Oregon poised to decriminalize drugs, other states legalize marijuana
Oregon is poised to become first in the nation to decriminalize possession of heroin and other hard drugs, while other states voted to legalize recreational marijuana.
Oregon's Measure 110 received support from about 60% of voters counted in Tuesday's returns, according to The Oregonian. The measure would reduce misdemeanor drug possession to non-criminal violations for small amounts of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and other drugs. Most felonies would become misdemeanors.
In New Jersey and Arizona, voters approved ballot measures legalizing recreational marijuana.
Similar measures were leading in Montana and South Dakota in Tuesday night's returns. If approved in those states, a third of the country will live in places where recreational marijuana is legal, according to The New York Times.
Eight years ago, Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize marijuana.
Denny Heck defeats Marko Liias in race for state lieutenant governor
Democrat Denny Heck was victorious Tuesday in the race for Washington state lieutenant governor. Heck, a U.S. Congressman, had 47% of the initial vote count. Marko Liias, a state Senator, had 34%.
Heck, who was born in Washington, began his career in state politics in 1976, winning election to the Washington House of Representatives, where he served for nearly a decade. He served as Gov. Booth Gardner’s chief of staff from 1990 to 1993, later founded the state’s public-affairs network, TVW, and also started a digital learning company. He was elected to Congress in 2012, but he announced his intent to retire last year, citing the degradation of civil discourse.
Liias, a lifelong Washingtonian, started his career in politics at 24, when he was elected to the Mukilteo City Council. He was appointed to an open seat in the state House in 2008 and has served in the state Legislature ever since, most recently as the Senate’s Majority Floor Leader. Liias also teaches a course in American Government at Everett Community College.
Kim Wyman narrowly leads Gael Tarleton in Washington secretary of state race
Republican Secretary of State Kim Wyman was narrowly leading in her reelection bid on Tuesday as she hoped to fend off a Democratic challenger who made the president’s attacks on mail-in voting a central issue of the campaign.
In Tuesday’s returns, Wyman was leading Rep. Gael Tarleton, D-Seattle, 52% to 48% with all but a handful of counties reporting results.
A former Thurston County auditor and elections administrator, Wyman is seeking a third four-year term as the state’s top elections official, a post Republicans have held for more than a half-century and Democrats have long sought to flip.
Throughout the campaign, Wyman touted her nearly three decades of experience overseeing elections at the county and state level.
Tarleton entered the race spotlighting her own national security credentials and calling for stronger election security. A four-term state lawmaker, Tarleton is a former Port of Seattle commissioner and senior defense intelligence analyst for the Pentagon.
Amid Trump’s jabs that mail balloting would sow chaos in the election, Tarleton criticized Wyman for not going far enough in directly condemning the president’s remarks and for not publicly supporting the Washington state attorney general’s lawsuit challenging U.S. Postal Service changes this summer.
Sex education Referendum 90 leading in early election results
Washington school districts will likely be required to teach sexual health education to most students under a referendum that was leading as of Tuesday’s vote count.
With the state’s most populous counties reporting early Tuesday evening, voters were approving Referendum 90, with about 61.7% favoring the measure. The referendum marks the first time nationwide that a sex education mandate has appeared on a statewide ballot.
By approving the measure, voters signaled that a 2020 law should go into effect, making lessons mandatory starting in kindergarten, though families could choose to opt out.
Nobles, Price Johnson and Wilson lead in Washington state Senate races
A handful of incumbents in key Washington state Senate races were trailing their challengers in Tuesday night’s election results.
In the Tacoma-area 28th Legislative District, Sen. Steve O’Ban, R-University Place was getting 48% of the vote, with Democratic challenger T’wina Nobles getting 52%.
In the 10th Legislative District, Sen. Ron Muzzall, R-Oak Harbor, was trailing Democratic challenger Helen Price Johnson, 49% to 51%.
In Southwest Washington’s 19th Legislative District, Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview, was trailing Republican challenger Jeff Wilson, 47% to 53%.
Washington state Lands Commissioner Franz has commanding lead over challenger
Washington state Lands Commissioner Hilary Franz Tuesday night had a commanding lead over Republican challenger Susan Kuehl Pederson.
The outcome had been expected in the lopsided race, which pitted an incumbent with a much larger campaign war chest against a challenger who had never run for public office. Pederson raised less than $100,000 for her campaign — a fraction of Franz’s more than $1 million in campaign contributions.
Both candidates made fighting wildfires the center of their campaign.
Pederson, a career natural resources professional who has worked as both a fisheries biologist and public power manager, emphasized cutting fire breaks to slow the spread of wildfires.
Franz championed fire breaks and logging of dead and diseased trees, too, but also pledged to push the Legislature for higher, dedicated funding for the state’s top firefighting office.
Bob Ferguson defeats Matt Larkin in Washington state attorney general race
Taking President Donald Trump to court, over and over again, seems to have paid dividends at the ballot box for Attorney General Bob Ferguson.
The activist AG defeated his Republican opponent, Matt Larkin, with 59% of Tuesday night’s vote count, to Larkin’s 41%. A few counties had not yet reported, and many ballots remain to be counted in the coming days.
“With the uncertain outcome of the presidential election, there’s no time to celebrate,” Ferguson said in a statement. “In a few minutes, I will meet with my legal team to move forward with defending our democracy and ensuring every legal vote counts across the United States. That’s my priority right now.”
Incumbent Reykdal leading in results for Washington state superintendent of public instruction
Incumbent Chris Reykdal is ahead of his challenger, Maia Espinoza, in the race for the state’s highest education office, one of the most politically divided in recent memory.
On Tuesday evening, Reykdal had about a 10 percentage point lead as results were still coming in.
If he maintains his lead, Reykdal will serve four more years as the superintendent of public instruction, leading the state agency that distributes funding to school districts and provides critical guidance to schools about how to adapt during the pandemic. Reykdal promised to bring more funding to school districts, especially for technology, and to increase the number of students receiving college credit while still in school and expand access to dual language programs.
Inslee defeats Culp in Washington governor race
Democratic incumbent Jay Inslee has won a third term, defeating Republican challenger Loren Culp in the race for Washington governor.
The race played out in large part as a referendum on Inslee’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic. Culp urged defiance of the governor’s emergency orders, which he portrayed as tyrannical and harmful to businesses. Inslee defended the measures as backed by science and necessary to save lives and safely reopen the state.
Inslee’s win seals the 10th consecutive victory for Democrats in Washington gubernatorial races. The last Republican governor, John Spellman, left office in 1985.
Read the full story here.
Strickland leads Doglio in race for Washington state's 10th Congressional District seat
Marilyn Strickland led Beth Doglio in Washington state's 10th Congressional District race in Tuesday night counts. Strickland had 50%, while Doglio had 36% and 14% of votes were write-ins.
The 10th District race has been one of Washington’s most closely watched. It is the only Congressional contest for an open seat. The district — covering Olympia, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Lakewood, Puyallup and eastern Tacoma — has been represented by Rep. Denny Heck, who announced his retirement in December before declaring he would run for lieutenant governor.
The 10th District candidates represent different wings of the Democratic Party battling for control. Strickland, 58, the former mayor of Tacoma, aligns with establishment, business-friendly liberals. Endorsed by former Governors Chris Gregoire and Gary Locke, she headed the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce when it opposed a 2018 head tax on big businesses to fund affordable housing.
The 55-year-old Doglio, a legislator known for environmental activism, is part of a wave of progressives often challenging party leaders. Endorsed by Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, she supports a Green New Deal to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Voters supporting amendments to scale back power of the King County sheriff
Two ballot measures intending to scale back the power of the King County sheriff were leading in Tuesday night’s vote count.
King County Charter Amendment 5, which would move the sheriff from an elected position, as it has been since 1996, to one appointed by the county executive and approved by the Metropolitan King County Council, was leading with 57% of the vote.
King County Charter Amendment 6, which would give the County Council the ability to reduce the sheriff’s duties and power, was leading with 63%.
West Coast goes to Biden, Associated Press calls
Joe Biden has won the West Coast, while President Donald Trump succeeded in Idaho and Utah, according to The Associated Press.
AP called the West Coast states soon after polls closed, based on vote tallies, demographic data and early voting statistics.
Races still haven't been called in key battleground states, and it may take days before the results are conclusive.
Mullet trailing challenger Anderson in 5th Legislative District race
In a high-profile intraparty fight in East King County's 5th Legislative District, Sen. Mark Mullet, D-Issaquah, was narrowly trailing fellow Democrat Ingrid Anderson, 48.38% to 49.71%.
Less than 1,000 votes separate the two candidates out of 82,052 ballots counted as of Tuesday evening, according to King County Elections.
The race between the middle-of-the-road incumbent Democrat and the further-left Democratic challenger signals a political shift in the district, which Mullet won by single-digit percentage points against Republicans in 2012 and 2016. In this year’s primary, where Anderson received 48.5% of the vote and Mullet had 47.6%, no Republican was even on the ballot.
Business and labor groups have poured more than $3 million into the contest, dwarfing independent spending in other legislative races across the state.
King County's Harborview Medical Center bond measure passes
A proposition to issue more than $1.7 billion in bonds for upgrades at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle will pass.
King County Proposition No. 1, which will help the public hospital build a new medical tower, renovate labs and improve behavioral health services, among other things, was leading with 77.5% in Tuesday night counts.
Per state law, bond measures need 60% approval to pass. This proposition will replace an expiring levy, and tax increases will vary, year to year, with the largest occurring between 2026 and 2036. The average hike will be 8 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, and the owners of a home of median assessed value will pay about $75 per year, on average.
Seattle's sales-tax measure for transit funding passes
A Seattle sales-tax measure to preserve frequent bus service, shuttle vans and free student ORCA passes will pass. It had 82% of the vote in counts Tuesday night.
The city’s six-year Proposition 1 will enact a tax of 0.15%, or 15 cents on a $100 purchase.
That money, to be collected starting April 1, will replace existing taxes that expire this Dec. 31, of .10% plus a $60 car fee. Yearly collections of $42 million for Seattle’s enhanced transit will not quite replace the current $50 million. Total sales tax within the city will rise to 10.15% including state, county and transit-agency shares.
Protests for racial justice continue in Seattle on election night
Protesters marched for racial justice in Seattle on election night, as they have most nights since early summer.
In South Lake Union, organizers with several protest groups spoke about the history of the fight for voting rights and about Joe Biden's record on race, including the crime bill. Protests for Black lives must continue regardless of the outcome of the election, organizers said.
"Even if Biden wins, we're still having to continue to fight for basic human rights," said Travonna Thompson-Wiley, an organizer with the Black Action Coalition. The coronavirus pandemic is disproportionately harming Black people, "literally wiping out my people," she said.
"We know there is more to lives mattering than a vote," said an organizer for The Engage Team who gave the initial J, citing security concerns. "That's why we’ve been out here every day."
'No issues' with voting in Washington state, except some long lines
With polls closing soon, Washington state and King County elections officials reported no issues — other than long lines at some voting centers where people were still waiting to cast last-minute ballots.
“No issues whatsoever at drop boxes or with ballot collection,” King County Elections spokesperson Halei Watkins said in an email late Tuesday. “Things are going smoothly for us here in King!”
Kylee Zabel, a spokesperson for Washington’s Secretary of State’s Office, said that as of 7:30 p.m., there were “high volumes of voters at voting centers throughout Western Washington to register to vote or receive a replacement ballot, and counties are working hard to serve all the voters.”
“It’s important for voters to know that if they are in line by 8 p.m., they will still be served even if it’s after 8 p.m. by the time county elections staff can assist them,” Zabel added.
‘You don’t need a home to vote’: Advocates reach out to Seattle’s homeless
At a table behind a bike rack next to the University District Food Bank, Saleena Salango handed out snacks, American Civil Liberties Union voting rights pamphlets, “I Voted” stickers and directions to the nearest in-person voting center on the University of Washington campus.
Salango, the advocacy coordinator for the Seattle-King County Coalition on Homelessness, had been doing this since 7 a.m. in places where homeless and low-income people congregate.
As of last week, she and volunteers with the coalition had registered 52 people to vote and helped eight people get their ballots to drop boxes. They also helped 141 fill out voter registration forms since Oct. 15.
Usually, the coalition has engaged with many more voters by this time. The hygiene centers and programs where staff normally go to table have closed or limited their hours or capacity, so the coalition had to reduce its get-out-the-vote efforts.
Here's how the Associated Press has called more than two dozen states
More than two dozen states have been called in the presidential race by The Associated Press, although winners haven't yet been declared in key battleground states.
AP is providing explanations for each state it calls, which is based on vote tallies, demographic data and early voting statistics. The winners in some states won't be immediately clear, especially considering the increase in mail-in ballots this year.
Federal Way center draws first-time voters
Dozens of people waited to vote Tuesday evening in a line that wrapped around the outside of a voting center at the Federal Way Performing Arts and Event Center.
Andrew Saulo, 31, stopped by after work as a King County transit operator because his toddler niece ripped up his ballot when it arrived in the mail. Originally from American Samoa, Saulo was voting in a U.S. election for the first time.
"I hope that people now see the power of the vote they cast," he said. "If they want to change things they can't just sit at home and wait for things to happen."
Gustav Cadet, originally from Haiti, also was voting in the U.S. for the first time. Friends had convinced him that it was time to take part this year.
"I need some change," said Cadet, who became unemployed during the COVID-19 pandemic and who listed immigration regulations and racism as his main concerns.
More people voted Tuesday at the Federal Way center than expected, said the center's lead elections worker, Janice McCall. "I'm really happy to see so many people," McCall said.
Republicans flip Senate seat in Alabama
Republicans flipped a U.S. Senate seat in Alabama, where Tommy Tuberville defeated incumbent Sen. Doug Jones, according to the Associated Press.
Jones was considered the most vulnerable Democratic incumbent in the Senate, according to AP. He was voted into office in a 2017 special election against former Sen. Roy Moore, who was accused of sexual misconduct against young girls.
Tuberville, a former Auburn University football coach, had the endorsement of President Donald Trump.
Hating Trump, and voting for him anyway
Bruce "MacK" MacKintosh sat Tuesday evening in what he calls his "man cave" on Whidbey Island, toggling among three local news sites and Facebook.
The 73-year-old moderate conservative was looking for early returns, particularly in local, congressional and legislative races. He wanted to make sure moderate Democrats held onto power against progressive challengers on the left.
"The state keeps moving further left and it keeps leaving me behind," MacKintosh said.
The retired real estate investor said he was disturbed by the "black bloc" tactics in protests over the summer and fall in Seattle following the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota. He also worried about left-wing rioters who might "tear up the city" on election night.
MacKintosh voted for President Donald Trump this year, though he didn't in 2016. He doesn't like Trump as a person, but thinks he makes a good president.
"I can divorce my thoughts of Trump the man from Trump the president," MacKintosh said. "And I think when we look back decades from now he's going to be one of the most effective presidents we've had. And I hate the man."
Democrat John Hickenlooper defeats incumbent Sen. Cory Gardner in Colorado
Democrat John Hickenlooper has defeated incumbent Republican Sen. Cory Gardner in Colorado, according to The Associated Press.
The seat was predicted to be one of the more likely flips for Democrats, who are aiming to gain at least four seats to have a majority in the Senate.
Hickenlooper was a two-term governor in the state and was a 2020 presidential candidate.
Friends bridge political divide with brews
A polite microcosm of the national political divide was on display at a table inside the Redhook Brewlab on Capitol Hill. A group of friends visiting from San Luis Obispo, California, sipped beers as a news anchor on a nearby TV screen tallied counties in Florida.
Trump voters Chris Hinkle and Emily Penner sat across the table from their friends Chris and Aissa Flores, who voted for Biden.
Hinkle, 29, said he supports lower taxes and worries about calls to defund the police. The paramedic said, "If cops are not there, how do I defend myself?" Chris Flores responded. Biden "is not saying defund the police," he said. "He wants more training."
The 31-year-old and Aissa Flores, 26, said they backed Biden because they oppose Trump's immigration policies. Chris Flores also criticized Trump's response to the coronavirus pandemic. "He got [the virus] and he still tried to downplay it," he said.
The group plans to spend a week in Seattle. "We have different views, but we're going to go home and still be friends," Hinkle said.
With just a few hours left, Washington voter turnout reaches 77.4%
Nearly 3.8 million people have voted in Washington, representing 77.4% of registered voters, as of 5 p.m., according to the Secretary of State's office.
The ballot number is higher than the total number of ballots cast in the 2016 election, which had a turnout of 78.8% out of 4.27 million registered voters. As of 5 p.m., there are 4.88 million voters in Washington.
The turnout record of 84.6% was set in 2008.
Voters have until 8 p.m. to deliver ballots to drop boxes.
No election disruptions in Seattle area
Federal investigators and prosecutors based in Seattle, on the lookout for election fraud and other efforts to disrupt voting in the area, have nothing worrisome to report.
Steve Bernd, a spokesperson for the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Seattle office, said the bureau opened a special command post Monday, with "all hands on deck." But there were no reports of election-related violence from either end of the political spectrum as of Tuesday evening, Bernd said.
Emily Langlie, spokesperson for the Western Washington U.S. Attorney's Office, said she had received an "all quiet" update from the office's elections officer.
Voters show anxiety about what comes next
Kirkland voter R. Glenn White is worried about what may happen after Tuesday's election. The 69-year-old said he expects emotional reactions from supporters of whichever presidential candidate loses.
"People are going to feel like they need to do something visceral, but hopefully it will morph into something productive," he said.
White spent Tuesday night in fitting 2020 fashion. He and his wife gathered with friends on Zoom for an online watch party. Everyone in the group of seven supported the Biden-Harris ticket.
"I'm not a Democrat, but I kind of vote that way," said White, a former Republican who now considers himself unaffiliated. "It's pretty much a reaction to the present president."
King County Dow Constantine received at least one vote for governor in Tuesday's election, thanks to White, who wrote in Constantine's name, rather than support Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee or Republican challenger Loren Culp.
White said he wanted to rebuff what he described as Washington's monochromatic landscape. The state's dominant blue hue has stifled fresh ideas, he said.
Polarization has turned politics to blood sport, making moderates from either party an endangered species, he added.
"There's hope, but I think it's slim," White said. "Cooler heads are not prevailing, and they haven't for a long time. It's very discouraging."
On Seattle's Capitol Hill, voters line up for replacement ballots
A few days ago, John Shillington, a cashier at Whole Foods, realized he had thrown out his ballot with the recycling.
“I was like 'Oh crap,’” he said. “So I googled how to print my ballot.”
That led him to Michael Ferguson, formerly of the Bernie Sanders campaign, who was standing on the plaza at Seattle Central College with a cell phone, a battery pack, and a printer, printing last-minute ballots.
"This was a tactic used by the Bernie campaign,” he said. ”But tonight I just decided to do it myself. Washington state makes it really easy to vote.”
Ferguson is anticipating a Biden win, based on early voter turnout in Texas and Florida. “I think we see the Trump base shrinking,” he said. “But maybe that’s just the bubble I’m living in.”
And if Trump wins—has he thought about a coping mechanism?
“Whiskey is sold in stores,” Ferguson said dryly. “Either way, no matter who wins, I don’t think the activism people have found in the past six months will go away. People will still continue to be out there marching for racial justice and against police brutality.”
Then he turned to a few more people who lined up to get their ballots printed, too.
Sen. Mitch McConnell holds his seat in Kentucky
Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell held his seat in Kentucky, winning a seventh term, according to the Associated Press.
Elsewhere, Republicans are hoping to keep control of Senate seats in a razor-close contest against a surge of Democrats challenging President Donald Trump’s allies across a vast political map.
Securing the Senate majority will be vital for the winner of the presidency. Senators confirm administration nominees, including the Cabinet, and can propel or stall the White House agenda. With Republicans now controlling the chamber, 53-47, three or four seats will determine party control, depending on who wins the presidency because the vice president can break a tie.
As polls closed in South Carolina, GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham was in the fight of his political life against Democrat Jamie Harrison, whose campaign stunned Washington by drawing more than $100 million in small-scale donations. More than 13,000 votes in one county will be delayed and have to be counted by hand by Friday’s deadline to certify returns.
Polls also closed in Georgia, where two Senate seats were being contested. They could easily push to a Jan. 5 runoff if no candidate reaches the 50% threshold to win.
AP's decision desk calls races when it is sure candidates have won, based on vote tallies, demographic data and statistics about advance voting.
Winners declared in some states as results trickle in for presidential race
Winners have been declared in some states for the presidential race, as polls have closed in parts of the country.
The Associated Press (AP) has called Alabama, Kentucky, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Mississippi, Tennessee and West Virginia for President Trump. For former Vice President Joe Biden, AP has called Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.
Some networks, including Fox News, have reached the same conclusions.
In more competitive states, it will likely take longer to know who won. Increased mail-in voting and restrictions in some states on when ballots can be processed will delay results, which have never been final on Election Day.
AP's decision desk calls races when it is sure candidates have won, based on vote tallies, demographic data and statistics about advance voting.
Seattle police may use Parks vans at protests
Seattle Police Department officers may use Seattle Parks and Recreation vans while responding to street demonstrations on election night, Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office confirmed after several dozen Parks employees raised concerns.
The Police Department should be able to afford its own vans, and using Parks vans for officers could undermine community trust in Parks while enabling police violence, the employees wrote in a letter to Parks Superintendent Jesús Aguirre.
In an email, Durkan spokesperson Kelsey Nyland said the vans may be used to keep officers out of view.
“Understanding that police presence has been a flash point at demonstrations this summer, the SPD has decreased its visible presence at demonstrations while remaining nearby in vehicles in order to respond safely and quickly to incidents as necessary,” Nyland wrote.
Decreasing visible presence was one of various recommendations made by Seattle’s Office of the Inspector General in a recent review of the Police Department’s crowd-management policies, Nyland said.
“The SPD has marked the vehicles so residents understand the vehicles are operating only for police purposes,” she added.
Weathering Election Day with hot tea
Van Cooper had served as an Election Day worker four times before, so he knew exactly what he needed to make it through Tuesday: hot tea.
Cooper packed three mugs of tea to keep him warm Tuesday as he greeted voters at a ballot drop box in Kirkland. Traffic at the drop box was steady, all day long, he said.
All drop-box sites close at exactly 8 p.m. Procrastinators sometimes sprint across the parking lot to beat the clock with only a few minutes to spare, Cooper said.
Van Cooper has been greeting people at the Kirkland ballot drop-box site all day. This is his 5th election. He packed 3 mugs of hot tea to keep him warm today, and he said that while traffic has remained steady all day, he expects it will pick up closer to 5 and 6 p.m. pic.twitter.com/oQG9jVaa0A
— Anna Patrick 🏔 (@annaleapatrick) November 3, 2020
Voting for the next generation
David Ebeling brought his 3-year-old son, Elliott, to help him slip his ballot into a drop box Tuesday afternoon at Kirkland City Hall. When an elections worker handed Ebeling an "I voted" sticker, he placed it on Elliot's jacket.
"Every generation is interconnected to the next. I’m looking out for his future." the dad said.
Whichever side people support, they should vote, said Ebeling, who always casts a ballot. "For me, it’s a no-brainer," he said, describing the electoral process as "the most important thing our country can do."
In other news, this is Elliott super pumped to see a mail truck pull up outside of Kirkland City Hall. He also got to wear his dad’s “I voted” sticker. pic.twitter.com/iKJzJzccPp
— Anna Patrick 🏔 (@annaleapatrick) November 3, 2020
Researchers find few plans for violence surrounding election
Researchers have found few examples so far of violence or actual plans for violence surrounding the election in the United States.
The Election Integrity Partnership, which is made up of research groups including the University of Washington's Center for an Informed Public, has been monitoring rhetoric around violence on different platforms.
The researchers have so far found "few credible reports" of actual violence or voter intimidation at the polls, with most of the content discussing violence after the election is highly speculative.
Our team has been tracking rhetoric around violence at the polls (& afterwards). So far, we’re finding very few concrete examples of violence and/or intimidation. Most content invoking violence is speculative — setting expectations that the “other side” plans to be violent. https://t.co/SduJP4D7Co— Kate Starbird (@katestarbird) November 3, 2020
Some online discussions may not be visible to researchers, the Election Integrity Partnership noted.
Voices for Trump in Snohomish County
Chris Ahn and Mason Gracia both cast votes for President Trump in Snohomish County, though they had different matters on their minds Tuesday.
Ahn didn't vote at all in 2016. But the 64-year-old Lynnwood resident sided with Trump this year mainly because he believes the president's stance toward North Korea has helped protect Ahn's home country, South Korea.
"That's the most important thing," Ahn said, at work in Mountlake Terrace.
Chris Ahn of Lynnwood says he voted for Donald Trump in 2020 mainly because he thinks the president’s stance toward North Korea helped protect South Korea, Ahn’s home country. “That’s the most important thing,” said Ahn, 64, who did not vote in 2016. @seattletimes pic.twitter.com/y8EW5Lju8g— Paul Ed Roberts (@Pauledroberts) November 3, 2020
Stopping by a ballot drop box in Monroe, Gracia said Trump "should be allowed a second term to finish what he started." Presidents with four years of experience under their belts tend to accomplish more, the 51-year-old said.
Mason Gracia, 51, of Gold Bar, WA, voted for Trump in 2016 and is voting for him again today. Gracia says presidents get more done in their 2nd term and thinks Trump “should be allowed a second term to finish what he started.” @seattletimes pic.twitter.com/ViWcG0Y2cf— Paul Ed Roberts (@Pauledroberts) November 3, 2020
Try Kent voting center to avoid lines in Renton, officials say
Residents in South King County who need to go to a voting center should head to Kent to avoid lines in Renton, officials said Tuesday afternoon.
The Kent location, at Showare Center, had short waits. For more updates on voting centers, follow @kcelections on Twitter.
We have quite a line at the Vote Center at Elections HQ in Renton but short waits at the Kent location at Showare Center. If you're in South King & need to come see us, we recommend heading to Kent rather than Renton for the moment!— King County Elections (@kcelections) November 3, 2020
King County residents can register to vote and receive replacement ballots at voting centers until 8 p.m. Those in line by the deadline will be allowed to vote.
Masks are required at all locations. The voting center at CenturyLink Field Event Center also allows for drive-in service.
Record-breaking turnout expected in the U.S.
More than 100 million votes were cast in the U.S. before Election Day this year, and experts are expecting record-breaking turnout.
Michael McDonald, a University of Florida professor who runs the U.S. Elections Project, predicts that about 160.2 million people — or about 67% of eligible voters — will vote in this election.
That would be the highest turnout in a century, he told The New York Times.
Washington is one of six states where more votes were cast before Election Day this year than in the entire 2016 election, according to the U.S. Elections Project.
Washington state GOP hopeful late votes will skew right
The Washington State Republican Party is expecting early votes to trend Democratic but hopes they will make up ground later this week.
"There is intensity out there," said U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers at a virtual rally Tuesday, describing Republican voters.
WA GOP holding #ElectionDay2020 virtual "rally" with several candidates. Message: early votes will trend Democratic, but Republicans will make up ground later in week. #WAelex pic.twitter.com/vWDXvEZXpm— Jim Brunner (@Jim_Brunner) November 3, 2020
A closing message from gubernatorial candidate Loren Culp was quieter.
"We've got this," he said.
A warm welcome at the Ballard drop box
The Ballard ballot drop box had already been emptied three times by 1 p.m., after seeing a steady stream of voters.
Drive-up voters kept three King County elections workers busy, as they handed off ballots through car windows. Other voters showed up on foot or on bike, some with their families.
Angie Gerrald greeted every voter with cheers and a "I Voted" sticker.
Angie Gerrarld has been at the Ballard drop box most of the day cheering voters and handing out stickers. She said volunteers like her from the Ballard District Council & Ballard Alliance are trying to create a welcoming environment for voters. pic.twitter.com/fheYiIk66E— RyanBlethen (@RyanBlethen) November 3, 2020
Gerrald and other volunteers from Ballard District Council and the Ballard Alliance were at the drop box in an effort to create a welcoming environment.
"We want to create a safe space and make it welcoming to voters," she said.
King County scans 1 millionth ballot
King County will report results from more than a million ballots on election night, after scanning its one-millionth ballot around 1 p.m. Tuesday.
The county hopes to break records by reaching 90% turnout, which is about 1.3 million votes.
Temporary security fence set up around White House complex
Special fencing designed to prevent climbing was to go up around the White House complex starting Monday night and remain for several days after Election Day as a temporary security measure, the National Park Service said. It cited a request from the Secret Service.
The park service said its action to temporarily restrict access to park areas near the White House followed a Secret Service request “regarding the unique security requirements with the upcoming Presidential election, and the need to quickly deescalate potentially violent encounters, protect park resources, and maintain public safety.”
Unless law enforcement requires closing the White House complex, the fencing “will not limit the public’s ability to demonstrate,” the National Park Service said.
First-time voters 'feel more a part of the community'
Stephen Ejide, a 37-year-old Microsoft employee, said this election is the first time his in-laws, who are from Eritrea, have voted, and he and his wife spent hours discussing candidates and initiatives with them. His own father, a Nigerian immigrant, first voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and he sees the same excitement with his wife’s parents.
“They feel more a part of the community,” he said.
Ejide said he’s optimistic about the country’s future and is glad to see more people engaging politically and discussing issues like structural racism.
“It’s 2020 and we’re still talking about racism and voter suppression, things our history books told us were solved in the '60s,” he said. “These things are still impacting people’s lives and shaping how we want to define our country.”
Snapshot from the ballot box: Danyetta Hopkins hoping for progress with Biden and Harris
Danyetta Hopkins, 35, voted for Joe Biden and for Gov. Jay Inslee, who she praised for his handling of coronavirus pandemic.
Under President Donald Trump, she feels the country is more divided and “more racism was displayed.”
“We’ve had 400 years of this for my people," said the King County voter who was at the New Holly ballot box on Tuesday morning. "All we can do is keep making progress. With Biden and Harris, I hope we continue that progress,” she said.
In Kenmore, voting for COVID-19 relief
Zoe Bateman makes her living as a therapist, working with children with autism.
When COVID-19 was first discovered in the region, she was furloughed from her job for six weeks. Slowly, over time, her work has picked back up -- first starting with telehealth and now doing in-person sessions, while taking safety precautions.
One of the only reasons she’s been able to get back to doing what she loves, Bateman said, is because Washington state has been taking the coronavirus crisis seriously since the beginning and instituting safety guidelines.
Heading out of the King County Voting Center at Kenmore City Hall on a gray and dreary Election Day, Bateman said she’s voting with the hopes that a new federal administration can do a better job of handling COVID-19 nationwide.
“I feel like we haven’t had the federal direction that we have needed. I would like to see that improved because we’re likely to not get a vaccine for a while still.”
Living in Shoreline, Bateman said she feels like the people around her are taking this crisis seriously. But that isn’t always the case for her friends and family members living in other states.
“I hear my friends and family in other states talk about what’s going on there,” Bateman said. “It’s very scary.”
EXPLAINER: When do Electoral College votes need to be in?
Is there a deadline for when the Electoral College must have its votes in?
Election Day is only one point in the process of the Electoral College, which decides who wins a U.S. presidential race.
After the polls close, states begin to count and certify popular vote results according to their respective rules. Federal law then requires governors to prepare, “as soon as practicable,” official certificates to report the popular vote in the state. These documents, often signed by governors, must carry the seal of the state. One copy is sent to the archivist of the United States.
Electoral College electors in each state don’t vote until Dec. 14. The electors’ votes typically align with the popular vote in each state. But not all states require the votes cast by electors to mirror the popular vote. Certificates recording the electoral vote results in each state must be received by the president of the Senate and the archivist no later than Dec. 23.
The official results of the electoral votes are sent to the new elected Congress, which is set to meet in a joint session on Jan. 6, 2021, and announce the results.
'An unhealthy dose' of anxiety: Seattle residents vote and wait
The rain trickled down and voters trickled in at a ballot drop box at North Seattle College on Tuesday.
Two King County Elections workers — Ryan and Tara — greeted every voter, asked them if their ballot envelope was signed, and handed out "I voted" stickers. Every voter Tuesday morning had their ballot signed, but the workers on Monday said they had caught five ballots lacking signatures, meaning their votes would not have counted.
Svetlana Mendyuk, 46, just popped out to vote and run a couple errands before an afternoon that she planned to spend "refreshing the screen," even though she knew it wouldn't lead to any tangible answers until (maybe) this evening.
"I've got tabs open all over the place," Mendyuk said. "It's anxiety, a healthy dose of anxiety. Maybe an unhealthy dose."
"Patience, that's what I keep trying to tell myself."
She voted for Joe Biden because she likes him, likes his life story, likes that he's been around so long that she considers him well vetted.
But she also voted against President Donald Trump.
"It's either him," Mendyuk said of Biden, "or the end of the Republic. I hate to be melodramatic, but it's surreal watching this stuff play out."
She worries about violence, after seeing a caravan of Trump-supporting pickup trucks harass a Biden campaign bus in Texas over the weekend. She worries about Republican lawsuits that could stop votes from being counted. And she worries about a peaceful transition of power if Biden wins.
"Say he loses, Trump, he's still president for three more months, I haven't heard anyone talk about what happens then," she said. "He's going to do anything to hold onto power."
Lynn Simmons dropped off her ballot during a quick break from work.
She doesn't like the divisive nature of Trump's administration and thinks he's handled COVID-19 very poorly.
"It's been a rough year, a rough four years," Simmons said. "I'm ready to have it over with."
She was planning on work being a distraction for the rest of the day. She's a geophysicist at the University of Washington's seismology lab. We're seeing only normal seismic activity, she said, before quickly changing the subject. No sense in tempting 2020 any further.
What happens to CNN and MSNBC if Biden wins? It’s complicated.
The Trump presidency has been an unmitigated success for the major three cable news networks, which have all experienced a huge uptick in audience ratings over the last three and a half years.
But while Fox News has maintained its dominance over the industry by going heavy on pro-Trump commentary, MSNBC and CNN have benefited from prime-time opinion hosts who have taken the president and his administration to task on a nightly basis — not to mention viewer interest in the constant swirl of news emanating from the Trump White House.
So what happens at MSNBC and CNN if Trump loses? It might seem to be the most fervent hope of some of their pundits. But would a President Joe Biden be good for business?
“I think they’re going to feel very lost, because they are largely addicted to [Trump] at this point and that sense of chaos,” said Ariana Pekary, who left MSNBC in July 2020 after a nearly seven-year career that included serving as a producer for Lawrence O’Donnell’s evening show.
A former CNN anchor argued that after years of challenging Trump, “a Biden win could have a devastating impact on their bottom line.”
CNN and MSNBC officially disagree. Read more here.
"I’m nervous for all of my friends … but I’ll still fight for them."
Raelle Walton woke her mom up early this morning.
The 18-year-old didn’t want to have to wait in a long line for her first time voting. She arrived at the King County Voting Center at Kenmore City Hall still in her pajamas.
To vote for the first time in such a heated presidential election, Walton said, was “euphoric.” She and her mom went to an onsite voting location because their ballots never arrived in the mail. It was better this way, they said. It made it feel like a bigger deal.
“It’s a little frightening,” Walton said of today’s election. “I wish we had a little bit better options.”
After turning her ballot in, Walton said she’s thinking about her friends who are queer. She knows of young people who are afraid that they could lose personal rights and protections if President Donald Trump is re-elected.
“I’m nervous for all of my friends who can’t potentially live the life they want to live … but I’ll still fight for them,” she said.
When Walton’s mom, Michelle Reyes, met her daughter outside of City Hall, she asked where her "I Voted" sticker was.
“It’s in my pocket,” Walton said.
She didn’t want to put it on her pajamas, but rather wait until she can proudly display it on her clothes for the day.
2 drug ballot measures in Oregon could be pioneering in U.S.
Oregon, the first state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, could be the first state to do the same with hard drugs like heroin and methamphetamine, as well as legalize therapeutic use of psilocybin.
A pair of ballot measures will be decided in Tuesday’s election that could make the state a leader once again in loosening restrictions on drugs.
Measure 110 would completely change how the justice system treats those who are found with personal-use amounts of the hard drugs. Instead of going to trial and facing possible jail time, a person would have the option of paying a $100 fine or attend new “addiction recovery centers.”
Among those in support of the Oregon measure are the Oregon Nurses Association and the Oregon chapter of the American College of Physicians.
It's not too late: King County residents can still get a replacement ballot
It's not too late to get a replacement ballot, said King County Elections.
A helping hand on Beacon Hill
At the Beacon Hill branch of the Seattle Public Library, King County Elections workers Kyle Daly and Diane Pavelin stood in the rain in ponchos and masks beside the ballot drop box, waiting to help.
“Thank you,” Daly told one woman after she dropped off her ballot. “Congratulations.”
Dale Song, 26, a software developer who moved to Seattle three years ago from Texas, was voting for the first time in Washington state. He hadn’t signed the outside of his ballot, Daly told him. So Pavelin fished a pen out of her pocket and they both waited while Song finished up.
“I kinda like this,” Song said of dropping off his ballot. “It’s convenient. Working from home, and now voting from home."
Song’s issues, he said, are health care, gun rights, “and just getting Trump out of office.”
Snapshots from the ballot box: Hau Le can't stop smiling
It was pouring rain, so Hau Le made a few quick hops out of his daughter’s SUV over to the ballot box outside the Rainier Beach Community Center Tuesday morning.
And he couldn’t stop smiling.
Le, 72, was voting as an American for the first time. Just last year, and after a decade of waiting, he had been sworn in as a United States citizen.
“He’s just happy to be voting,” his daughter Anh Le, 45, said from the driver’s seat while her father climbed back in, still smiling. She took the day off from her job as a nail technician to drive her father to the ballot box, and spend a celebratory day with him.
They voted together the other night and drove over, first thing, on Election Day.
“He feels good and feels happy for today,” Anh said of her father.
They exchanged a few words in Vietnamese.
"Because he loves the people that he voted for. Biden and Harris," she said. "And he’s not worried."
Corey Kreisher didn’t sleep at all the night before Election Day.
“I’m a little anxious, I guess,” said Kreishner, 50, after dropping his ballot into the box at the Rainier Beach Community Center. “Isn’t that weird?"
It’s never happened before, and Kreisher, who works for a Bellevue software company, has voted in almost every election since he was eligible.
“I didn’t think I’d be this nervous,” he said, standing in — and seemingly oblivious to — the rain.
He is fretful about a lot of issues, he said, “But my biggest concern is that we have a moron in The White House. I thought, ‘How much damage could he do? Turns out a lot.”
Kreisher hopes for a return to civility not just in politics, but in society.
“It didn’t used to be this way,” he said. “We need to be civil. We’re not going to pull together if we don’t do that.”
USPS ordered to sweep swing-state facilities for ballots
A federal judge ordered the U.S. Postal Service to immediately sweep facilities in several crucial swing states to locate any mail-in ballots and send them to election officials.
The order Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan in Washington covers USPS facilities in Democratic strongholds like Detroit, Philadelphia and Atlanta, as well as Arizona and South Florida.
The facilities must be swept by 3 p.m. East Coast time to “ensure that no ballots have been held up” Sullivan said.
The same judge on Sunday ordered the USPS to send notices to managers
“reiterating the importance of processing all election ballots” in Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Minnesota by Nov. 3 because the states’ extended deadlines may be overturned.
Rainy and slow election day start at N. Seattle College ballot box
Seattle athletes and teams encourage fans to vote
In a year when politics have been deeply woven into sports, it's not surprising to see a huge push on social media from teams and athletes encouraging fans to vote.
That's certainly the case in Seattle, where players from each of the city's major teams — and the teams themselves — have posted a flurry of tweets to drum up enthusiasm at the polls.
Here's a sampling of some of Seattle's athletes and sports teams sounding off on Election Day:
Archbishop of Seattle urges postelection unity and love
The archbishop of Seattle, the Rev. Paul D. Etienne, is asking people to focus on love — and how to spread it — as they process election results that will "inevitably evoke bitterness, anger, hatred and unrest."
In a letter dated Tuesday, Etienne urged his "brothers and sisters" to love each other, spread joy, care for their neighbors and help unite communities.
"I invite each one of us to defeat divisiveness with understanding, rancor with amicability, hatred with compassion, mistrust with greater willingness to listen. Let us counter the downward spiral with renewed efforts to respect the diversity and dignity of each of our neighbors.
"We have the opportunity to shape the world we live in," he wrote. "Each of us plays a part. Each of us can make decisions every day to recognize the good in people and bring more love, joy, and unity into the world."
Joe Biden wins KidsPost mock presidential election
Former vice president Joe Biden won by a huge margin in KidsPost’s mock presidential election.
Readers ages 7 to 14 cast 1,982 votes October 14 to 28, some voting individually and some as part of a class at school.
Biden, who is a Democrat, received 1,467 (or 74%) of those votes. President Donald Trump, a Republican, earned 452 votes (22.8%).
Suspicious robocall campaign warning people to ‘stay home’ spooks voters nationwide
An unidentified robocaller has placed an estimated 10 million calls in the past several weeks warning people to “stay safe and stay home,” spooking some Americans who said they saw it as an attempt to scare them away from the polls on Election Day.
The barrage of calls all feature the same short, recorded message: A computerized female voice says the message is a “test call” before twice encouraging people to remain inside. The robocalls, which have come from a slew of fake or unknown numbers, began over the summer and intensified in October, and now appear to have affected nearly every Zip code in the United States.
The reach and timing of the calls recently caught the attention of YouMail, a tech company that offers a robocall-blocking app for smartphones, as well as some of the country’s top telecom carriers, which determined from an investigation that the calls may be foreign in origin and sophisticated in their tactics. Data from YouMail shows that the calls have reached 280 of the country’s 317 area codes since the campaign began in the summer.
The robocall does not explicitly mention the 2020 presidential election or issues that might affect voters’ well-being, including the coronavirus pandemic, but still threatens to create confusion, said Alex Quilici, YouMail’s chief executive. And it illustrates worrisome vulnerabilities in the country’s phone system, he said, that sophisticated actors could exploit.
Long lines to vote on Election Day aren’t unusual
Long voting lines on Election Day aren’t unusual or necessarily a sign of that something nefarious is afoot.
They’re often the product of something as simple as heavier-than-expected turnout for an important election like Tuesday’s presidential, congressional and other races.
Long lines also develop when there aren’t enough voting machines — either because some have malfunctioned or there just aren’t enough of them to comfortably manage the turnout — or when poll workers don’t show up for their assignments, leading to understaffing.
This year, polling places are putting social distancing measures in place because of the coronavirus pandemic, with voters who are in line encouraged to keep at least 6 feet (1.83 meters) apart — automatically making for longer lines.
Hour-by-hour guide to an election night like none before
Following Tuesday’s showdown between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden means more than identifying the battleground states and remembering how the Electoral College works.
With a massive turnout expected, an avalanche of mail-in ballots to process, differing state policies on counting them and an army of election lawyers ready to pounce, election night has the potential to end in anything from an early landslide to a drawn-out brawl that carries into 2021.
Here is an hour-by-hour guide starting at 4 p.m. PST for what to look for as American voters choose a president, decide who controls the Senate, pick their House representatives and weigh in on local races and ballot issues.
Washington turnout reaches nearly 73%; voting open until 8 p.m.
Washington’s early voter turnout reached 72.7% — more than 3.5 million voters — as of Monday evening, continuing on what elections officials say is a record-setting pace.
The previous record of 84.6% was set in 2008.
Voters have until 8 p.m. Tuesday to get ballots into the mail or delivered to drop boxes. No postage is required. A list of drop-box locations is available at the Secretary of State’s website.
How to Survive Your Election Day Anxiety
Owen Keehnen, a writer and historian in Chicago, is losing sleep over the election. About five times a week over the past few months, he wakes up around 3 a.m. in a panic, he said.
“As the election approaches, I feel an overwhelming amount of anxiety,” Keehnen, 60, said. “So much seems to hinge on the election when it comes to rights down the line and everything else. It’s really wreaked havoc on my sleep.”
About two-thirds of Americans in 2017 said concern about the future of the country was a significant source of their stress over money and work, according to a report published that year by the American Psychological Association titled “Stress in America: The State of Our Nation.”
The survey found a majority of people from both political parties were stressed about what it described as the “current social divisiveness,” but those figures were higher for Democrats at 73%, compared with Republicans at 56% and independents at 59%, it said.
Interactive: Explore your own scenarios for the road to 270 electoral votes
Although the 2020 presidential campaign is playing out under unprecedented conditions, it may — in some ways — play out like past presidential contests.
The campaigns are largely focused on a few highly contested states whose electoral votes could push their candidate over the 270 total votes needed to win.
Click here to explore your own scenarios for the electoral vote: will states follow recent results, or do you foresee a new electoral landscape emerging?
Have you experienced voting issues in Washington state? Let us know
Have you experienced any issues with voting in the Seattle area or Washington state? Have you witnessed any election-related irregularities? If so, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please include details, such as time and location. An editor will review your tip and you’ll be contacted if we’re able to pursue a story.
From Seattle Times readers: ‘What’s at stake for me in this election is my humanity’
On Election Day, an anxious energy hangs in the air. So we wanted to take the collective temperature of our region to ask readers what’s at stake for them this election and find out, too, what they hope the next four years can bring.
When we asked for your honesty, your hopes and your fears leading up to today's election, we got more responses than we ever expected, capturing a wide swath of the political spectrum.
Peggy, 91, is thinking less about what the election means for her and more about the world her great-grandchildren will inherit.
Julia, 12, says her future and her ability to get an education are on the line.
How The Seattle Times will call races
In national elections, The Seattle Times relies on The Associated Press to call races.
For local and Washington state contests, we take a cautious approach to declaring winners.
The Times tracks expected votes that remain to be counted, and in cases where one candidate’s lead is insurmountable given the anticipated votes left to be counted, we often do call those races.
As it has for more than 170 years, the AP will count the nation’s vote in real time on Election Day and report the results of presidential, congressional and state elections on Nov. 3 and beyond.
The AP will use that vote count to declare winners in some 7,000 races and let the world know who wins not only the White House, but control of Congress and every state Legislature.
Catch up on the past 24 hours
In Washington, what will we know and when will we know it? If you’re a longtime Washington resident, you’re familiar with our drip-drip-drip of counting election results, which begins Tuesday night and continues for days. The general election shouldn’t be too different from the usual, with initial election results posting shortly after 8 p.m. Here’s what to expect.
Some states have begun readying the National Guard for potential unrest, and a state of emergency has been declared in the Portland area. The Seattle Police Department had no intelligence Monday afternoon to indicate any specific threats to the city on Election Day and following days, Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office said in a written update.
In the key state of Pennsylvania, President Donald Trump is promising a legal fight over absentee votes that may land in the Supreme Court. Both sides are all lawyered up for battles across the nation.
Wondering about that photo of Joe Biden without a mask, leaning in to talk with a campaign staffer on a plane? The image that's gone viral with Trump supporters was taken in November 2019, before the first COVID-19 case was reported.
What you'll see on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube: The companies have spent billions trying to make sure they aren't misused like last time. Know the thinking behind your feeds today and after the election.
What are the presidential candidates saying in voters' pamphlets? It depends on where you live. In the Washington state voters' pamphlet, President Donald Trump's candidate statement references Seattle's Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone. Meanwhile, Joe Biden mentions Bristol Bay in his candidate statement for Alaska voters. Here's a look at what the candidates emphasized to voters in different states.
The first batch of results has arrived from Dixville Notch and Millsfield, two tiny New Hampshire towns that traditionally vote just after the stroke of midnight.
2020 Election Resources
For more information about voting, ballot drop boxes, accessible voting and online ballots, contact your county elections office. Ballots are due by 8 p.m. on Nov. 3.
- King County: 206-296-8683 or st.news/vote-kingcounty
- Snohomish County: 425-388-3444 or st.news/vote-snocounty
- Kitsap County: 360-337-7128 or st.news/vote-kitsapcounty
- Pierce County: 253-798-8683 or st.news/vote-piercecounty
For more information on your ballot, in any county, go to: myvote.wa.gov
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