1:00am: Signing off.  Time to go to bed.

12:57am: Chafee (I) wins RI Gov race.  CA fails to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

12:54am: I don’t think I’m going to get any more VT Gov results until morning.  With 90.9% votes in, here is the unofficial tally.

Peter Shumlin (D) 50% 108,974

Brian Dubie (R) 48% 104,707

12:50am:  CNN reports that Republicans are likely to gain at least 60 seats (!!!) in the House.

12:46am: A.P. Also Projects Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Will Defeat Sharron Angle in Nevada

12:42am: So now its looks like we’re awaiting the CO senate race, as well as Washington and Alaska.  Shumlin (D) looks in good shape in the VT Gov race, leading by over 4,000 votes with 91% of the vote in.

12:40am: Big news.  CNN Projects Harry Reid (D) will win in Nevada.

12:33pm: Next project: What states actually were swept by Dems where there we multiple statewide races? (1) maybe VT? (Shumlin, Leahy, Welch); (2) CA (Brown, Boxer); (3) NY (Schumer, Gillenbrand, Cuomo); (4) maybe CO? (if Bennet wins); (5) Delaware (Carney, Coons); (6) Maryland (Milkulski, O’Malley); (7) Hawaii? (TBD).

12:30am: Unconfirmed reports in VT Gov race: Shumlin will win by under 2000 votes; Shumlin has good chance to meet 50% threshold; no concessions tonight.

12:25am:  VT Gov Race: Shumlin 108,974 to Dubie 104,707. 50 percent to 48 percent (91.9% reporting)

12:21am:  A.P. Projects Republican Mark Steven Kirk Will Win Obama’s Former Illinois Senate Seat.  That’s just embarrassing for the Democrats.  CNN Projects Toomey (R) wins PA Senate seat, and Kasich (R) wins Ohio Gov.

12:14am: UPDATE via the NY Times.  Too close to call in CO, PA, and IL.  Reid takes early lead in NV.

Nev. Sen. 19%in 51%Reid 44%Angle
Colo. Sen. 34% 49%Bennet 46%Buck
Pa. Sen. 99% 49%Sestak 51%Toomey
Ill. Sen. 97% 46%Giannoulias 48%Kirk

12:08am: CNN projects Jerry Brown (D) to be California Gov defeating Meg Whitman.

12:07am: Portland, Me., rejects noncitizen voting

MIDNIGHT: It’s midnight!!! Still so much to learn:  Will Reid survive in NV?  What’s happens to the Murkowski write-in effort in Alaska?  Awaiting winners in PA, IL, and CO Senate races.

11:59: CNN also projects Boxer (D) Senate win in CA.

11:58pm: CNN Projects Democrats will retain Control of the Senate.

11:57pm: Nevada Senate Results:

Harry Reid
Dem. 213,962 51.6%
Sharron Angle
Rep. 182,983 44.1%

11:56pm:  Amazing redux.  With 88.9% of the vote in Shumlin (D) leading by 3 (!!!) votes in VT Gov race.

11:46pm: Boxer (D) declared winner in CA Senate Race.

11:43pm: Both WCAX and the NY Times show small Shumlin (D) leads in the VT Gov race.  I have no idea whether Dubie (R) or Shumlin will win at the end of this thing, but it make we wonder: Do more states have a single party controlling all of state government than ever before?

11:40: The power of Palin.  See here.

11:36pm: PA Senate race still too close to call, as is IL.  Too close to call in FL Gov race.  House seats: 244 Rep., 191 Dem.  +39 seats so far.   Senate seats now: 46 Dem, 44 Rep, 2 I (that caucus with Dems) +4 Rep so far.  Lots of experienced Dems lost in the House.

11:34pm:  Amazing.  With 84.3% of the vote in Dubie leading by 7 (!!!) votes in VT Gov race.

11:23pm: What should we take from elections like this?  Certainly the continued polarization of American politics since September 11.  Many are frustrated.  Here’s my partner’s take; she’s certainly frustrated.  Friends on Facebook have stopped watching results.  But the reality is that this country got harder to govern.  Blue dogs and maverick Democrats have been defeated, moderate and establishment Republicans lost primaries to Tea Party candidates, the conservatives in Congress will be more conservative, and liberals more liberal.  There are at least two very divergent views for the future of America.  That said, it’s hard to believe that just two years ago we saw Jesse Jackson crying in Grant Park as an African-American with a name of Barack Hussien Obam was elected president.  While liberals may be frustrated tonight, two years is quite soon and it’s very possible for a president to win re-election after a mid-term hammering (see Bill Clinton in 1996).  In addition, compared to other Western democracies, the U.S. is a very conservative country with a conservative structure of government (e.g., checks and balances; Senate rules), which should make this evenings results and the difficultly in passing progressive legislation less surprising.

11:21: VT Gov: Dubie and Shumlin separated by 106 votes.

11:17pm: In Illinois, they are voting at the same time for the 6 year Senate term AND a special election for remainder of unexpired term for Barack Obama’s vacated Senate seat.  Thus, Kirk and Giannoulias could split these…very odd.  See the Chicago Tribune results here.

11:14pm: Republicans make gains in key Senate races of PA and IL.

Colo. Sen. 22%in 50%Bennet 45%Buck
Wis. Sen. 52% 45%Feingold 53%Johnson
Pa. Sen. 94% 50%Sestak 50%Toomey
Ill. Sen. 87% 47%Giannoulias 48%Kirk

11:04pm: VT Politics Update: Race for Gov too close to call, and we will either learn of winner very late tonight or have to wait until Sec of State certified results.

11:03pm: Nikki Haley (R) projected to win SC Gov race by CNN; big win for Palin and tea party movement.

11:01pm: Wyden (D) wins and holds seat in Oregon Senate Race.  Raw exit poll data shows Jerry Brown up in race for CA Gov, Boxer (D) up on Fiorina in CA Senate race, and closer but Murray (D) up in Wash Senate Race.

11:00pm: CNN reports that Republicans will likely break the 54 House seat gain that they had in 1994.

10:58pm: Still very close in VT Gov Race..Shumlin takes small lead.

Dubie (R) 84152 49%

Shumlin (D) 84590 49%

10:56pm: CNN also projects a Feingold loss in WI.

10:53pm: NBC News projects GOP’s Scott Walker will win Wis. governor’s race.

10:37pm: BREAKING NEWS: NBC News calls US Senate race in Wisconsin for Rob Johnson (R) defeating Sen. Russ Feingold (D). One year, or even six months ago no one thought this seat was in play.  As someone born and raised in WI, this is somewhat shocking given Feingold’s independent voting record, and sets up WI has a huge swing state in 2012.  Also, I wonder if Senator Herb Kohl will run for re-election in 2012, and if not whether Feingold would run.

10:33: Great quote by James Carville on CNN, “I’m not a government guy; I’m a politics guy.”  He can’t wait for the next two hours.  There may be some silver linings for the Dems tonight like the Senate races in NV, PA, ILL, and/or CO.

10:30pm: Big Senate Races.  I suggest in my election preview that Pennsylvania’s could once again be fool’s gold for Republicans; Sestak may make me look smart.

Colo. Sen. 10%in 50%Bennet 45%Buck
Wis. Sen. 25%in 43%Feingold 56%Johnson
Pa. Sen. 82%in 51%Sestak 49%Toomey
Ill. Sen. 67%in 48%Giannoulias 46%Kirk

10:24pm: There will be a delay in Nevada voting results due to polls that have stayed open later as a result of power loss.

10:21pm: vtdigger reports big votes gains for Shumlin in Burlington. Dubie has ~1,000 vote lead but unclear if this yet includes Burlington results.  Also, first female hispanic governor in US history elected in NM.

10:06pm: Races in WI so far.   It would be great to know if results are in from Milwaukee and Dane Counties since exit polls suggest a tight Senate race.

Senate:

Johnson (R) 201,472 59%

Feingold (D) 138,709 40%

Gov:

Barrett (D) 129,798  40%

Walker (R) 187,858 58%

10:02pm: Republicans having a very good night in the House races.  But in the Senate the Dems are up in Penn. (Sestak) and IL (Giannnoulias), but, according to NBC News, parts of Philly and Chicago still not in yet which is good news for Dems.

9:57pm: WCAX reporting in Vt Gov Race – Shumlin 48% (62451), Dubie 49% (64002)

9:51pm: 4 Senate race to watch that have results coming in IL, PA, WI,  CO.

Colo. Sen. 5% in 51%Bennet (D) 44%Buck (R)
Wis. Sen. 8% in 41%Feingold (D) 58%Johnson (R)
Pa. Sen. 44% in 54%Sestak (D) 46%Toomey (R)
Ill. Sen. 41% in 52%Giannoulias (D) 43%Kirk (R)

9:49: Sestak (D) performing well versus Toomey in the PA Senate Race.  And NBC News projects Deval Patrick as winner of Mass. Gov. race.

9:45pm: Local Montpelier, VT Politics-for State Senate, Doyle, Cummings and Pollina are in the lead with Osman close in 4th for the three seats.

9:40pm: Please comment if you know how WCAX is getting their results versus the AP/Times/VPR.

9:38pm: 275 votes separating candidates in VT Gov Race.

9:31pm: WCAX Reports that with 51% of expected vote in (which I not sure how it’s calculated) showed Dubie and Shumlin tied at 49%-49% in VT Gov Race.  This results are coming in far more quickly than the official AP tally.

9:28pm: Very early results in WI Senate Race

Johnson (R) 5,430 56%

Feingold (D) 4,209 43%

9:22pm: VT Gov race looking to be very close as Brattleboro results come in very favorably for Shumlin.

9:20pm: BREAKING NEWS: NBC News projects that the House will switch to control of the Republican Party.

9:18pm: The VT Constitutional Amendment that would allow 17 year olds to vote in primaries if they turned 18 years old before the general is winning overwhelmingly.

9:17pm: Races to close to call according to NBC News: Senate races in IL, PA, WI, and CO.

9:14pm:

Returns in VT Gov Race (11% reporting)

Dubie (R) 12235 55%

Shumlin (D) 9542 43%

“Dubie tells WCAX that it’s too early to draw conclusions – promises to support candidate who gets the most votes should either fail to reach 50%” according to vtdigger.

9:07pm: If the VA House races foreshadow that rest of the night, it will be a long night for the Dems.  Republicans have already picked up 3 seats in VA, and could still pickup a fourth.

9:03pm: Exit poll results suggest Vitter (R) up in LA.  Very Close in WI Senate Race between Feingold and Johnson in Senate Race, and very close in CO Senate Race.

9:02pm: Cuomo (D) wins NY Gov race.  Brownback (R) wins Kansas Gov.

9:01: 49-48 Dubie with 34% in according to vtdigger.org.

8:54: Returns in VT Gov Race (9% reporting)

Dubie (R) 10016 56%

Shumlin (D) 7197 40%

8:50pm: Best case scenario now for Republicans in US Senate is to get 50-50 tie because CA looking out of reach, and CO,  NV, and WA will be close.  And as I noted earlier, House seats being lost by Dems in VA.  VA 5th just flipped to the Republicans according to CNN.

8:50pm: Wisconsin polls to close in 10 minutes.

8:48: Sen. Lincoln will lose in Arkansas according to First Read/MSNBC.  Republicans now have picked up 2 Senate seats.

8:44pm: Things looking very good for Dubie (R) for VT Gov, according to unconfirmed reports in Essex and Colchester.

8:42pm: Vt Gov.: With 7% in, Dubie up 2500 votes.  Need to wait until Chittenden County comes in.

8:41pm: Big win for Dems.  Manchin (D) wins WV Senate race.

8:40pm: Republicans magic number down to 38 in the House.

8:26pm: ABC news just projected Blumenthal (D) winner of US Senate race in Conn.  Hold for the Dems.

8:21pm: In Vermont, if no gubernatorial candidate gets majority, the winner decided by secret ballot in legislature.

Early returns in VT Gov Race (3% reporting)

Dubie (R) 2925 52%

Shumlin (D) 2531 45%

8:17pm: GOP House number up to 40 as Dems flip Delaware House seat.

8:15pm: Early returns in VT Gov Race (2% reporting):

Dubie (R) 1437 53%

Shumlin (D) 1190 44%

8:12pm: Ayotte (R) holds large early lead over Hodes (D) in NH Senate race.

8:08pm: Coons (D) beats O’Donnell (R) in Delaware US Senate seat to keep Joe Biden’s old seat.

8:05pm: Rubio (R) wins Fl Senate race.

7:55pm: Fla. Senate results with 9% in shows Rubio (R) with 51%, Crist (I) 28%, Meek (D) 19%.  I think Rubio will win this.

7:54pm: House races in VA not looking good for Dems.

7:45pm: Current status:

Rs need 39 seats to control House: Currently 0 seats gained

Rs need 10 seats to control Senate: Currently +1 (IN)

Vermont Gov: no results yet.

WI Gov and Senate: no results yet.

Things looks to be interesting in NV.

7:40pm: In 20 minutes, a whole host of states have their polls close.

7:36pm: In U.S. history, whenever the House has flipped, so has the Senate.  I think there’s a first time for everything.  The House is likely to be controlled by the Republicans, but Dems look likely to control the Senate, especially with the early signs in WV.

7:31pm: Portman (R) projected to win Senate race on Ohio. Republicans hold.  West Virginia to be close, but Dem Gov. Manchin ahead in exit polls for the Senate seat.

7:30pm: Polls close in North Carolina, Ohio, West Virginia.

7:15pm: Early returns and exit polling suggest that Republican Marco Rubio will likely win the US Senate Race in Florida.  No call yet from major networks yet.

7:11pm: Is anything looking good for Dems yet? Maybe.  KY 3rd and 6th House district show early Dem leads.  I’m currently watching the New Hampshire Senate race, but votes are quite slow coming in.

7:04pm: So the Republicans need to pickup 10 seats in the US Senate to gain control.  They now have 1… Coats replacing Evan Bayh in Indiana.

7:00pm: CNN projects Rand Paul (R) wins the US Senate seat in Kentucky and Dan Coats (R) wins Senate race in Indiana.  Leahy wins in Vermont!!! No surprise, but nice to hear.

6:59pm: In the first hour 22 House results will start to come in, and we’ll better see what’s happening.

6:57pm: If the below are correct, the Dems should maintain control of the Senate, but the House results remain to be seen.  The Republicans need 39 pickups, but most commentators are predicting around 54/55 pickups.

6:55pm: Leaked exit polls for U.S. Senate:

Blumenthal (D-CT) +8
Rubio (R-FL) +21
Blunt (R-MO) +10
Boxer (D-CA) +8
Kirk (R-IL) +6
Paul (R-KY) +11
NV–EVEN
Bennet (D-CO) +2
Toomey (R-PA) +4
Murray (D-WA) +6
Manchin (D-WV) +7
Johnson (R-WI) +5

Hat Tip: Political Wire.

6:54pm: Polls in 6 more states close in 6 minutes:  Florida, Georgia, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia.

6:50pm: Early results in some of the Indiana House races thought to be toss-ups look back for the Dems if these margins hols up.  See http://elections.nytimes.com/2010/results/house/big-board.

6:48pm: 2% in.  Coats (R) up in Ind. with 52%.

6:42pm: 1% of vote in. Rand (R) 57%, Conway (D) 42% in KY.

6:39pm: I’m interested in margins as much as who wins.  If races expected to be close are not close at all, it could be a huge night for Republicans.

6:36pm: Like usual, early exit polls have been leaked to Drudge Report.  Signs of a close race in Nevada where Sen. Reid (D) face Angle (R), but perhaps Dem loses elsewhere (AR, WI, OH, ND) according to Drudge.  A Feingold loss would be big news in Wisconsin, and point to a long night for the Dems

6:34pm: VERY early returns in Ind. and Ky. show Republicans in the lead.

6:12pm: Most polls have closed in Indiana and Kentucky.  Coats (R) is favored in the Senate race.  In KY, will Tea Party candidate Rand Paul beat Conway, the state AG?

5:35pm: First polls close in Indiana in 25 minutes, but not all polls in the state.  Networks won’t call any races until 7pm.

5:25pm: For real political junkies, the NBC Election briefing book

3:16pm: Writes Political Wire:  “Charlie Cook emails to say there’s too much focus on poll closing times for tonight’s results, times when no election results are actually available. Instead, the focus should be on the times at which meaningful levels of results are in.  He sends over a useful table showing the states in chronological order by when 50% of the 2008 vote had been counted, along with some key races worth following.”  Check out the table; it’s great.

1:37pm: A look of the key races in the 50 states

1:04pm: Political Wire notes, “Exit polls are being conducted in 26 states today but the results will be quarantined until at least 5:30 pm ET.  Anything you might hear before then is based on uninformed speculation. Of course, much of what you hear after that time might be as well.”  While this is true, some useful information can be known during the day such as turnout, weather, and rate of turnout in key areas.

11:35am: Helpful Senate Map courtesy of the Times

10:51am: Races to watch for signs of political trends

10:44am: Poll closing times from Morning Score via Politico: – 6 p.m.: Indiana, parts of Kentucky … 7 p.m.: Florida, Georgia, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia, the rest of Kentucky … 7:30 p.m.: North Carolina, Ohio, West Virginia … 8 p.m.: Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas … 8:30 p.m.: Arkansas … 9 p.m.: Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Wyoming … 10 p.m.: Idaho, Iowa, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah … 11 p.m.: California and Washington … Midnight: Alaska and Hawaii.

10:43am: From the AP via Politico about News Coverage: “CNN, Fox News and MSNBC plan live election coverage throughout the evening. … ABC – Network coverage from 9:30-11 p.m., anchored by Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos. … CBS – Network coverage from 10-11 p.m., anchored by Katie Couric, who will anchor a live webcast from 11-midnight. … FOX – Network coverage will feature a simulcast from Fox News Channel from 9-10 p.m. … NBC – Network coverage from 9-11 p.m., anchored by Brian Williams, and for an additional four hours after a local news break. … PBS – Network coverage from 11-midnight, anchored by Jim Lehrer.”

10:41am:  With the very close US Senate race in Nevada, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) versus Tea Party Candidate Sharon Angle, the voters have the option to vote for “none of the above.”  This should make things more interesting.  Similarly, in Alaska the incumbent Senator Lisa Murkowski (R) running as a write-in candidate, giving the Dem a chance given that there’s also a Republican on the ballot.

10:37am:  I’ll be live blogging the election today.  I posted an election preview yesterday.  The first polls close today in just under 7.5 hours in Kentucky and Indiana.  Here in Vermont, we’re paying close attention to the Governor’s Race (Shumlin v. Dubie), and in my home state of Wisconsin, U.S. Senator Russ Feingold (D) is down in the polls to Rob Johnson (R) and the Wisconsin Governor’s Race pits Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) v. Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker (R).  (If you watch this video and read this article, you’ll see why this race holds interest for me.)  Obviously, the two big stories nationally are (1) how many seats will the Republicans take over in the House?, and (2) can the Dems hold onto the US Senate.

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