Here is guide to follow tonight’s results, with every race that will be worth calling tonight arranged by poll closing time. In addition to 37 Senates races, 37 gubernatorial contests and more than 140 House races, this list includes a number of important down-ballot elections.
Of course, not all congressional contests are born equal, so I have colored all Senate, House and Governor races that are rated in the most vulnerable categories (anywhere from lean retention to likely take-over) so you can get a better sense of where to focus your attention. Keep an eye especially on Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois and New York as there are a lot of tight congressional races in those four states.
Remember: Some states - some counties! - are extremely slow at reporting, others are much quicker. Since Indiana usually belongs in the former category, I doubt it will be of much use to determine early trends despite the fact that polls close at 6pm in much of the state. Kentucky, on the other hand, could be more useful: By the time the 7pm states start reporting, we should already have formed an idea as to what is happening in KY-03 (which Democrats truly cannot afford to lose) and KY-06.
Another factor to think about: States that have significant early voting will report a huge number of ballots very quickly, giving us a quick sense of where key races are heading. Those states include Nevada and Florida. But of course, But of course, given that Alaska, California, Washington and Hawaii are hosting crucial elections that could help determine control of both chambers of Congress, we are in for a very long night no matter what.
- Kentucky (parts of the state close at 7pm ET): Senate, KY-03, KY-06
- Indiana (parts of the state close at 7pm ET): Senate, IN-02, IN-3, IN-08, IN-09. Also: control of state House
- Florida (panhandle closes at 8pm ET): Governor, Senate, FL-02, FL-08, FL-12, FL-24, FL-25. Also: Attorney General, Amendment 5 and Amendment 6 (redistricting questions).
- Georgia: Governor, Senate, GA-02, GA-08, GA-12
- New Hampshire (in some localities, option to keep polls open until 8pm): Senate, Governor, NH-01, NH-02. Also: control of state Senate and state Assembly.
- South Carolina: Governor, Senate, SC-02, SC-05
- Vermont: Governor, Senate
- Virginia: VA-02, VA-05, VA-9, VA-11
- North Carolina (county boards have right to keep polls open until 8:30): Senate, NC-02, NC-04, NC-07, NC-08, NC-11. Also: control of state House and of state Senate.
- Ohio: Governor, Senate, OH-01, OH-10, OH-13, OH-15, OH-16, OH-18. Also: Attorney General, Secretary of State, control of state House.
- West Virginia: Senate, WV-01, WV-03.
- Alabama: Governor, Senate, AL-02, AL-05. Also: control of state House and state Senate.
- Connecticut: Governor, Senate, CT-02, CT-04, CT-05
- Delaware: Senate, DE-AL
- Illinois: Governor, Senate, IL-08, IL-10, IL-11, IL-12, IL-14, IL-17
- Maine: Governor, ME-01, ME-02
- Maryland: Governor, Senate, MD-01
- Massachusetts: Governor, MA-04, MA-05, MA-06, MA-10
- Michigan: Governor, MI-03, MI-07, MI-09. Also: control of state House.
- Mississippi: MS-01, MS-02, MS-04
- Missouri: Senate, MO-03, MO-04
- New Jersey: NJ-03, NJ-06, NJ-12
- Oklahoma: Governor, OK-02
- Pennsylvania: Governor, Senate, PA-03, PA-04, PA-06, PA-07, PA-08, PA-10, PA-11, PA-12, PA-15, PA-16, PA-17. Also: control of state House.
- Tennessee: Governor, TN-04, TN-05, TN-06, TN-08
- Texas (El Paso area closes at 9pm ET): Governor, TX-23, TX-27. Also: control of state House.
- Arkansas: Governor, Senate, AR-01, AR-02, AR-04
- Arizona: Governor, Senate, AZ-01, AZ-03, AZ-05, AZ-07, AZ-08. Also: Attorney General race.
- Colorado: Governor, Senate, CO-03, CO-04, CO-07. Also: control of state Senate.
- Kansas: Governor, Senate, KS-03, KS-04
- Louisiana: Senate, LA-02, LA-03
- Minnesota: Governor, MN-01, MN-06, MN-07, MN-08
- Nebraska: Governor, NE-02
- New Mexico: Governor, NM-01, NM-02, NM-03,
- New York: Governor, Senate A, Senate B, NY-04, NY-13, NY-19, NY-20, NY-22, NY-23, NY-24, NY-25, NY-29. Also: Attorney General, control of state Senate.
- Rhode Island: Governor, RI-01
- South Dakota: Governor, Senate, SD-AL
- Wisconsin: Governor, Senate, WI-03, WI-07, WI-08
- Wyoming: Governor
- Idaho (parts of the state close at 11pm ET): Governor, ID-01
- Iowa: Governor, Senate, IA-01, IA-02, IA-03. Also: control of state legislature
- Montana: control of state House.
- Nevada: Governor, Senate, NV-03. Also: control of state Senate.
- North Dakota: Senate, ND-AL
- Utah: Governor, Senate, UT-02.
- California: Governor, Senate, CA-03, CA-11, CA-18, CA-20, CA-45, CA-46, CA-47, CA-48. Also: Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Prop 19 (legalizing marijuana), Prop 23 (delaying global warming law), Proposition 25 (budget passage), Proposition 20 and 26 (redistricting).
- Hawaii: Governor, Senate, HI-01
- Oregon: Governor, Senate, OR-01, OR-04, OR-05
- Washington: Senate, WA-02, WA-06, WA-08, WA-09
- Alaska: Governor, Senate, AK-AL
Note on closing times: Polls in some states do not close at the same time, either because of differing time zones or because of longer hours in urban areas. I have here listed these state at the time we should expect to start seeing the first results, not the time at which all polls close. In Florida, for instance, networks might not want to make any calls before all polls close at 8pm ET, but if past patterns hold today some counties should start releasing totals after 7pm ET. I have tried to indicate in which states such problems can arise.