If you are like most of us, there is a knot in your stomach today as you frequently check your news feed for election coverage. Tonight is a nail-biter, and unlike previous elections, we probably won’t have a clear winner come bedtime. Experts aren’t even able to predict whether we will have results tonight—or this week.
It’s estimated that with Covid-19 surging, Americans returned more than 59 million absentee ballots this year, breaking records. And in many states, all of those ballots have to be counted after the polls close.
However, there are a few early indicators that might give us clues to how this election is leaning.
The first polls to close
The first polls to close, at 6 p.m. ET, are in Kentucky and Indiana. Both are typically red states, so if we see the first counts roll in in favor of Biden, that will be an early indicator. The next polls to close are in Florida, and as SFGate writes, “if Biden wins Georgia, Florida or North Carolina, Trump has an even slimmer path to victory.”
Read more on what to watch as the polls close at SFGate.
Polls are closing in some states and results may begin to trickle in soon.
Follow along as our reporters – who are working from more than a dozen cities in battleground states – chronicle the night. https://t.co/kZfp2p9wxc
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) November 4, 2020
The Los Angeles Times reports that key battleground states, like Arizona and Florida, already have a process for counting absentee ballots before election day. This means they will report their numbers earlier, giving us an indication if any states are swinging.
Read more about battleground states, and how they will be early indicators, over at the Los Angeles Times.
What to look at, hour by hour
Election polls in the U.S. will start closing Tuesday at 6 p.m. Eastern and will continue until 1 a.m.
Here’s a complete list of closing times and a detailed analysis of what to look for as polls close in every state. https://t.co/vJJdVx8io6
— The New York Times (@nytimes) November 3, 2020
From county reporting, to battleground states, know when, and what, to look for. The New York Times created a guide for exactly that, hour-by-hour. Check it out here.