6:00 p.m. Final polls in Indiana/Kentucky. Polls close in Virginia. (They also close in Georgia, South Carolina and Vermont.)
Bernie Sanders has won re-election in Vermont; Virginia Senate race too close to call.
NBC calls Indiana for Romney; Democrat Joe Donnelly has slight lead with 7% reporting.
6:42 p.m. West Virginia and South Carolina both called for Romney.
6:47 p.m. Polls still open in Florida although there's some counting going on, with Obama in the lead, but close.
North Carolina polls are closed, and Obama is leading with 9% of the vote in. Exit polls seem to give Obama a shot in North Carolina.
7:00 p.m. NBC calls Georgia for Romney. 7:00 p.m.
Poll closings... Pennsylvania, Michigan, Missouri, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maine, North Dakota, Florida and New Hampshire. (Also non-leaners Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee and Texas.)
7:04 p.m. Interesting Senate races in this round, including Warren/Brown in Massachusetts; NBC calles Maine Senate race for independent Angus King.
7:06 p.m. New Hampshire, Florida and Pennsylvania are too close to call according to NBC.
7:08 p.m. AP: reports: Obama carried Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont and Romney's home state of Massachusetts. Also as expected, he won Delaware and Maryland as well as the District of Columbia and Illinois. Romney had South Carolina, Oklahoma, Kentucky and West Virginia in his column. He also won Indiana, a state Obama carried in 2008 but did not contest this year.
7:29 Roger Wicker wins re-election in Mississippi.
7:56 A lot still undecided; NC and FL being tough to call bodes better for Obama than Romney. McCaskill, Warren leading; CNN calls Pennsylvania for Casey, all Democrats leading/winning.
8:00 Polls close in swing states Colorado and Wisconsin, and in close-ish Arizona, Minnesota and New Mexico. (Plus: Louisiana, Nebraska, New York and Wyoming.)
8:02 Wisconsin and Colorado too soon to call; Wisconsin said to be lead by Obama. Romney gets 4 of 5 votes in Nebraska. Michigan projected quickly for Obama. Arizona too early to call and Romney leading; Minnesota too early and Obama leading.
8:04 NBC says the House will stay with the GOP. No surprise.
8:06 I just realized Orrin Hatch is still in the Senate. Good lord.
8:15 NBC calls Pennsylvania for Obama -- rust belt firewall continues to hold.
8:35 Wisconsin called for Obama; arguably first legit swing state. He's one medium-sized state away from the win.
8:37 CBS calls New Hampshire for Obama. Another swing state.
8:42 NBC calls Elizabeth Warren the winner in Massachusetts.
9:00 Polls close in Iowa and Nevada. (Also Montana and Utah.)
Again, these are two swing states (Nevada less so) both leaning toward Obama. If Obama has won New Hampshire, Colorado and Wisconsin by now and has held in the leaners (Minnesota, Michigan, Maine, Pennsylvania, New Mexico and Nevada) then Iowa's swing votes (and Nevada's leaning votes) make him president of the United States. Again.
9:24 CBS says that Democrat Tim Kaine has won the Senate race in Virginia.
9:55 North ...
Bill Chandler, the director of the Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance, is reporting that the Scott County Circuit Clerk's office may have mishandled the voter registration forms of approximately 200 people, mostly Latinos and African Americans.
Chandler said MIRA, a which advocates from immigrants in Mississippi, registered 320 new voters in Scott County, where 9.7 percent of the population is Hispanic. More than 38 percent of Scott County's citizens are African American.
Roughly half the individuals MIRA signed up did not have working telephone numbers, Chandler said. Of the people who did have working phones, Chandler said not one received voter information cards from Circuit Clerk Joe Rigby's office. Chandler believes the voters without phones also likely did not receive the information cards.
"The effect of that is preventing people from knowing where their polling place is. To me, that is very, very serious," Chandler told the Jackson Free Press this evening.
Back-to-back calls placed to Rigby's office resulted in a busy signal.
CORRECTION: The above blog post has been edited to reflect that the circuit clerk's name is Joe Rigby. We apologize for originally misstating his name.
Don't trust everything you hear. Make sure "reliable sources" are actually reliable.
Nate Silver at Five Thirty Eight gives Obama a 91% chance of winning tonight; PPP, a left-leaning pollster, predicts over 300 electoral votes for Obama.
But others show the race closer, and the Electoral College race could be nail-biter, based on all sorts of factor such as weather, long lines, voter ID, GOTV efforts and some election officials in swing states who seem to be hell-bent on confusing folks on their way to the polls.
So here's a quick guide to watching the results tonight and getting a sense of how things are going for either side.
First, a summary: You've got to get 270 electoral votes to win the Electoral College; 269-269 is a tie (which would be decided in the U.S. House of Representatives, probably in Romney's favor).
The New York Times' Electoral Map suggests that Obama has 243 electoral votes that are totally safe or lean toward him; Romney has 206. That means Obama needs to hold those states and get just 27 more electoral votes to win; Romney needs to hold his and win 64 more electoral votes.
The Swing States in this math are New Hampshire, Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Wisconsin, Iowa and Colorado. (Others that lean Obama that Romney might pick off are Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota and New Mexico. States that Obama could pick up from leaning Romney are North Carolina and Arizona.)
Now, the timeline... all times are Central.
5:00 p.m. Some polls close in Indiana and Kentucky. Obama won Indiana in 2008, but it's polling strongly for Romney this cycle. Interesting to watch, though, is the race between Tea Party GOP favorite Richard Mourdock (rape pregnancy is a gift from God) and Congressman Joe Donnelly, the Democrat. Mourdock knocked off Richard Lugar in the primary, but may now lose the seat for the GOP thanks to his national renown -- and Tea Party-vs.-normal-people schisms in the Indiana state GOP.
6:00 p.m. Final polls in Indiana/Kentucky. Polls close in Virginia. (They also close in Georgia, South Carolina and Vermont.) It may not be called all that quickly but Virginia is the first toss-up state to watch closely. If Obama wins it, he's probably having a good night -- he would only need one other swing state (other than New Hampshire) to get to 270 if he holds his "leaners." If Romney wins Virginia, his path to victory could tack "Southern" and he could still win without Ohio.
6:30 p.m. Polls close in Ohio and North Carolina (and West Virginia). Ohio may still have long lines and provisional ballots to count, but it'll be one of the most important states to watch.
One particular House race to watch while the results are coming in, according to PolicyMic, is Ohio District 16, which pits "business" against "labor" in an expensive House showdown between GOP Rep. Jim Renacci and Dem. Rep. Betty Sutton. If Sutton wins, that's one sign that Obama will, too; if Renacci wins, then Ohio may be trending ...
One could assume that given the GOP's fervor in pursuing voter ID laws across the nation, the party would trumpet "substantiated" cases from the rooftops. But, alas, no one can seem to find them.
Members of Voting Rights for All MS and the state chapter of the ACLU gathered on the second-floor rotunda inside the Capitol today at 1 p.m. to demand Gov. Phil Bryant retract recent comments about voter ID that the group believes could mislead voters.
A petition at Signon.org has received more than 1,000 signatures demanding that Gov. Bryant retract statements he made about voters presenting ID at the polls.
The state's voter ID law has not received approval from the U.S. Department of Justice, and therefore is not in effect for tomorrow's election. Voters will be able to vote without any form of photo ID.
The petition came in response to Bryant's comments Oct. 31 after the Mississippi Economic Council's Hobnob.
"If you have to show a ID to buy a pack of cigarettes or to buy alcohol, which you should, then certainly you ought to have to present an ID to vote, so that we are certain that you're not stealing someone else's liberty and their chance to vote," Bryant said.
"We are calling on Gov. Bryant to immediately retract his statements asking for voters to show ID at the polls, and to clarify that there is no voter ID law in effect for the election tomorrow," David Denney of Voting Rights for All MS said at the Capitol. "As the highest elected official in the state, Gov. Bryant should know better than to make such statements, knowing that people listen to what he has to say."
Mississippi ACLU Director of Programs Nancy Kohsin-Kintigh encouraged any voters who are victims of or witness any discrimination, unfair or illegal practices at the polls tomorrow to call the ACLU at 888-354-ACLU (2258).
The petition reads: "Governor Bryant, the people of Mississippi call on you to immediately issue a retraction of your misleading statement to the Mississippi Economic Council calling on voters to present ID at their polling places this election. Furthermore, we call on you to clarify, unequivocally that photo ID is not required at the polls and the Voter ID law will not be in effect for this election on Tues., Nov. 6th. You are elected to represent ALL Mississippians and your actions are plain wrong, bordering on dereliction of your constitutional duty."