Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Night Liveblog and Open Thread

3:08am: It is fitting that the remaining two states to be decided were the closest of all the states in our averages. I'll end on that note for now. I'll be back later to tie up some of the loose ends.

What a night/morning! Thanks for clicking over.

3:01am: There goes Montana for McCain.
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2:59am: Well, that 8am class is calling. Let's stroll through those three two remaining states one last time and I'll leave it there for the night before returning to wrap things up tomorrow.

Missouri: 99% in: McCain has opened up a slightly wider lead; a couple thousand votes.
North Carolina: Still "100%" in but those numbers have been stationary for quite a while now.

2:53am: CNN looks as if they have given all of Nebraska to McCain. That Omaha district was the closest, but Maine and Nebraska will once again allocate all their electoral votes to one candidate each.
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2:31am: Wow! 78 votes separate Norm Coleman and Al Franken in that Minnesota senate race. There may be a recount in Missouri in the presidential race, but that North Star state senate race is a lock.

2:30am: Will we have another call? No. That was a big tease from NBC. Cued up the music and everything.

2:27am: McCain's lead in Missouri is down to 398 votes. Yeah, this is getting into Florida 2000 territory. Actually, it is getting into Missouri territory. Both the Democratic and Republican primaries this past year were extremely close and the last several senate races in the state have been really tight.

2:24am: Montana is slipping away for Obama. What had been an early lead has changed into a McCain lead of 50-47 with about 80% of the precincts in.

2:21am: Nate Silver is calling North Carolina the best bet of the remaining four states (prior to the Indiana call). That lead seems like it will be able to hold up with all counties in.

2:17am: Both candidates have 50% in North Carolina and just more than 12,000 votes separate them with Obama ahead.

2:09am: Indiana to Obama. Wow, did Karl Rove get it wrong. 338 electoral votes!?! Who comes up with this stuff! What that means is that McCain will not crack the 200 electoral vote threshold.
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2:08am: Just 554 votes separate McCain and Obama in Missouri with 99% reporting in the Show-Me state.

1:47am: I just went over to the secretary of state's website for North Carolina. The Tar Heel state's outstanding votes seem to be early/absentee. All 100 counties have reported with no county "partially reporting." Incidentally, Obama is still ahead there.

1:45am: Saxby has left the building. The Georgia senator seems to think that the remaining precincts and absentee votes will break evenly but that we likely won't know until later in the morning whether they'll will be a runoff.

1:39am: Alaska has been called for McCain by NBC.

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1:12am: Does anyone out there know what is happening in the states concerning their 2012 primaries and caucuses? Oh, you'll be hearing more about it here.

1:04am: With 99% of the precincts reporting in both Indiana and North Carolina, Obama is ahead 50-49. With a slightly smaller percentage of precincts reporting, Missouri (94%) has McCain up 50-49 as well. In Montana, both candidates are now under 50% and Obama is clinging to a one point 49-48 lead. Still no word out of Alaska.

12:57am: Alaska's polls will be closed statewide as of 1am.

12:55am: 97% are in here in Georgia and Chambliss is now down to 51%. Martin needs to get that under 50% plus one vote to force that runoff. Martin likely needed to be the one in Chambliss's position tonight to be in good shape for December.

12:46am: The story here in the Peach state is that they are shifting into the counting of early votes and absentee ballots to see if the race will have a runoff.

12:40am: I'm still here. Keeping tabs on this Georgia senate race. Chambliss is dropping toward that 50% mark.

12:09am: "A new era of service and sacrifice."

12:05am: Let's have a look around at which states are still out:
North Carolina: 96% reporting: Obama 50% McCain 49%
Missouri: 86% reporting: McCain 50% Obama 49%
Montana: 29% reporting: Obama 52% McCain 45%
Indiana: 97% reporting: Obama 50% McCain 49%

Those are all tight except for Montana, which seems to be coming in slow. Granted, the Treasure state spotted the others at least an hour and a half. But still.

12:02am: Ooh, and Scranton gets a shout out. Who woulda thunk it?

12:01am: A nod to the service and sacrifice of John McCain.

11:59pm: Oh, polls in Alaska are about to close.

11:57pm: And here comes the 44th President of the United States onto the stage at Grant Park.

11:42pm: Nevada to Obama. Well, that's 338 folks. Our graduated weighted averages have gotten us this far. As S.D. has mentioned in the comments, North Carolina is still very tight and has shifted over to McCain at this point. We'll have to see how all the rest of it shakes out.

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11:29pm: CNN has Arizona going for McCain and the entirety of Nebraska's 5 electoral votes going to McCain. That pushes the Arizona senator's tally to 152 electoral votes.

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11:28pm: McCain is still uncomfortable with the negativity. He obviously doesn't like the booing of Obama-Biden during his speech.

11:20pm: NBC just pushed Florida into the blue column for Obama. That's 333 and only Nevada away from matching the FHQ map. Or is that the Karl Rove map?

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11:13pm: And there goes Colorado for Obama. That breaks the 300 electoral vote barrier. That's the first time that has happened in three elections.

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11:08pm: Add Hawaii and Virginia to Obama's tally and Idaho and South Dakota to McCain total. That's 297-142. NBC is showing 146 for McCain right now with Nebraska, I guess, giving 4 electoral votes to McCain. Could one of those congressional districts move into Obama's column?

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11:00pm: NBC calls the election for Obama on the strength of calls in all three west coast states. That's 280 electoral votes for the Illinois senator. I'll hold off on coloring Florida in.

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10:59pm: The AP calls Florida for Obama.

10:50pm: North Carolina, Indiana, Virginia and Missouri are all really close. And only Virginia was off the recent Watch Lists, having pushed into the Obama lean category.

10:31pm: The stars at night are big and bright! Fill in the blank. Texas goes to McCain. Along with the Magnolia state further east, McCain has a clean sweep of the Deep South states. But Obama has only really been competitive in those peripheral south states like Virginia and North Carolina. By the way, Virginia looks much closer than our averages have projected. But the recent polling had only just started to come back from that nine and ten point high a couple of weeks back.

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10:19pm: Iowa and New Mexico to Obama and Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana and Utah turn red. It should be noted that two of the closest states from both four and eight years ago -- Iowa and New Mexico went rather quickly tonight for Obama. It has looked that way in the polling for a while now, but that has been quite a shift in those two states.

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10:12pm: I should have made an announcement before I headed out, but I'm back at the electoral vote counting, Rovian bat cave now. And fortunately so. Everyone was sucking up the bandwith where I was and I quickly grew tired of slow load times. Zipping around now.

I've got some catching up to do. Hold on just a moment and I'll put another set of maps up.

9:40pm: As I was just saying to Rob in the comments, anything for Obama on the McCain side of the victory line (Colorado) on the Electoral College Spectrum is crippling to McCain. It is over. The 44th president of the United States is Barack Obama. Well, it was during the 9 o'clock hour. So, I had that right in the scenario analysis earlier today.

9:34pm: Unless there is a McCain surprise out there -- and I don't see one -- it is over. Ohio to Obama.

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9:27pm: West Virginia to McCain. Mark another one off.

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9:16pm: Georgia to McCain. So much for competition in the Peach state. A political scientist can hope, can't he.

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9:00pm: And now with the 9 o'clock closings, Obama is up to 175, adding Minnesota, Wisconsin New York, Rhode Island and Michigan. As I just heard, it has been all good news for the Dems and nothing good for the Republicans. Well, McCain got North Dakota and Wyoming. Mark those off the list.

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8:59pm: Alabama to McCain. 103-43 for Obama.

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8:49pm: It has gone down hill fast here. If you look at the post I had earlier today on election night scenarios, once you factor in all of the strong states that Obama should win (those with polls still open), he is sitting at 264 electoral votes. So when I say Virginia or Colorado and it is over. It really is.

8:39pm: Pennsylvania to Obama. That's two of the three states. Virginia and it will be over. But I don't expect the Old Dominion for a while.

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8:30pm: At the bottom of the hour, one of the three states I mentioned before, broke for Obama. New Hampshire stays blue in 2008 (the only state to turn blue in 2004).

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8:24pm: Obama edges ahead in the count, adding Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, DC and Obama's home of Illinois. McCain adds Tennessee and Oklahoma. Obama 77- McCain 34. No surprises so far.

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8:22pm: Well, here comes North Carolina at 8:30. Oh, and Arkansas

8:11pm: Well, the CNN lady in Grant Park is yelling at me. I suppose it is loud there.

8:00pm: South Carolina to McCain, according to CNN. No surprises there.

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7:55pm: Well, the clock is approaching the 8 o'clock hour. There are lots of closings then. Which to keep an eye on? Pennsylvania and Missouri. I don't expect a quick call on Pennsylvania. But that is one of the three early states to watch. If any of the Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire group is called soon, we'll start getting an indication of how the evening will go.

7:50pm: I'm assuming those early returns in South Carolina are coming in from the Low Country. Obama will not win the Upstate. That much I can tell you. Sorry to disappoint Upstate Obama fans.

7:45pm: Well, I guess we have our answer on West Virginia. A little too early, I suppose.

I just spoke with my sister in Charleston, SC and she waited in line for four hours this afternoon. She was dismayed to learn that my wait was but 4 seconds. Oh well. We did take some pictures at the polling place at Firehouse #7 here in Athens, GA, but were brutally rebuffed when we tried to get an inside shot of the machines. Couldn't even shoot the room. The pictures that we (my wife) were able to take should hopefully come my way later this evening. I'll post them when I have them. They're ever so exciting.

7:29pm: We are approaching 7: 30 and that means time for Ohio and West Virginia to close up shop. Do we have a wait on West Virginia or will it be an easy call for McCain?

7:22pm: I should also add that NPR called Vermont for Obama.

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7:12pm: Alright, I'm in position. Hunkered down and ready to go. Or is that fired up; ready to go! One of those. Well, I should take a moment to talk a little bit about how we'll be calling things tonight (since ) NPR did the same on the way over here. I'm not in this to be first, so I'll wait until someone else (a reputable source) has made a call before putting a new map up. NPR has handed Kentucky to John McCain and I'll have that one up shortly.

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6:47pm: I'm off to my undisclosed location for the next few hours. I should have checked before now, but hopefully they have wi-fi. If not it will be a short stay before I head back to the electoral vote counting batcave. Back in a few.

6:11pm: And we're off! The first round of poll closings have begun in Indiana and Kentucky. No call yet from the networks on Kentucky. Either they are showing a surprising amount of restraint or Kentucky's close. I'm going with the former.

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This should be a fun night. The comments section is open so have at it. Oh, if you haven't had a chance yet, go and check out the final electoral college map. It is just the map. I'll have the Spectrum, polls and other graphics up sometime tomorrow. It has been a whirlwind day. I can't believe The Fix said election day was usually boring. Boo! Anyway, the big news was that Nevada moved into the Obama lean category.

Recent Posts:
FHQ's Final Electoral College Map (11/4/08)

Election Protection

An Election Night Scenario Analysis, Part II


Unknown said...

ABC has called PA for Obama. Given that only 4% of precincts are reporting, I consider that premature.

On the other hand, 15% of Florida has reported (I personally consider 10% the point where you can start to take results seriously), and Obama is winning convincingly there.

Robert said...

NBC is also calling PA for Obama. I agree it is a little too early.

Anonymous said...

It is early, but we've gotten pretty clear indications on Pennsylvania for a while now.

Incidentally, I'm here with Paul Gurian and he is being a bit more cautious than me. Colorado is that victory line though. If it breaks for Obama it is over.

Unknown said...

Obama currently has 54% of North Carolina with 15% of precincts reporting. I'm not sure whether to believe this will hold, since there were obviously a lot of blue precincts reporting early and the lead is shrinking. But it's looking more and more possible.

Robert said...

Looks like GA is going fairly solid for McCain and Chambliss, but I wonder how much of the Atlanta vote is in yet.

Unknown said...

ABC has called GA for McCain.

Right now McCain is barely leading Virginia 50% to Obama's 49%. However, most of the areas yet to report tilt Democratic. Still too early to tell here.

Robert said...

FOX News is projecting Ohio for Obama. If that is right, it is hard to see how McCain can win.

Anonymous said...

That's what I'm hearing here, Rob. Anything on the McCain side of Colorado (the victory line) and it is over.

Unknown said...

With 75% of precincts reporting, Obama currently leads NC by a mere five thousand votes. All of the races in North Carolina narrowed after all the Democrats took an early lead, but most of those races have stopped narrowing while the race for president just gets narrower and narrower. I'm beginning to suspect McCain might pull NC out. But either way, it's going to be really, really close.

Unknown said...

With 87% of the precincts reporting, McCain has taken the lead in North Carolina.

Unknown said...

Obama currently has 54% of North Carolina with 15% of precincts reporting. I'm not sure whether to believe this will hold, since there were obviously a lot of blue precincts reporting early and the lead is shrinking. But it's looking more and more possible.

Unknown said...

ABC has just called the election for Obama. They said that he has taken "California and other western states". California brought him to 262, so presumably they're also giving him Washington (any other state is too small to push him over 269).

Unknown said...

"Change has come to America."

Anonymous said...

So it seems.

One question: Is that the "real America"?

Robert said...

I went to be, but I am now back up. Yes the change for the "real America" will be greater than for the rest of America because they will now find out what it is like to live in a socialist republic.

Unknown said...

Oh, please, not more "Real America" malarkey. I know it's being used ironically, but I've reached the point that I'm even tired of hearing it used ironically.


As of 8 a.m. Wednesday morning they still hadn't officially called NC, but I'd put good money on Obama taking it. Right now he's got a 12,000 vote lead (out of 4.2 million votes), but the votes yet to be counted are the early ballots, and more Democrats were voting early than Republicans. That would give Obama 364 electoral votes to McCain's 163, with Missouri's 11 EVs still outstanding. But as I write this, NBC is calling McCain the "apparent winner" in MO. So assuming I'm right on NC and NBC's right on MO, that puts the final tally at 364-174.

In the Senate, it looks like the Democrats won't get the filibuster-proof majority (which means they'll probably part ways with Lieberman). As of right now, the races in Alaska, Georgia, Minnesota, and Oregon are still uncalled. The Democrats will have 58 (not counting Lieberman and Jeffries) if they carry all four of these, but they're not leading in any of them.

All the House races appear to be settled, and the Democrats have 258 to the Republicans 177.