Be Sure to Join Our Election Night Live Blog/Open Thread Tomorrow Evening

This unprecedented election season is finally coming to a close. Join us for commentary and discussion as the results roll in.

Lambert will kick off the election night live blog at 8:30 PM tomorrow evening. With the presidency and the Senate majority in play, there’s a lot to watch. The presidential and vice presidential live blogs were lively, so we expect another evening of incisive and often humorous conversation.

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    1. Lambert Strether

      I wish I were pulling down what Silver is, then.

      Verified voting says New Hampshire is all paper ballots. (I seem to recall that there were mechanical voting machines in 2008 in some cities, but perhaps that has changed? Apparently now it’s a mixture of ballot boxes and optical scanners (i.e., not hand counted). So I would expect the count to be fast.

      Florida has a horrid mixture of paper ballots and Mixed Paper Ballot and DREs without VVPAT (DRE: Direct-Recording Electronic; VVPAT: Voter-verified Paper Audit Trail).

      If we believe that these three Florida Counties are key:

      County Voting Technology Mayor
      Miami-Dade Mixed Paper Ballot and DREs without VVPAT R
      Hillsborough (Tampa) Paper D
      Duval (Jacksonville) Paper R

      Could be a long night in Florida. The Justice Department will monitor the polls:

      In Florida, Department of Justice (DOJ) officials will be in Miami-Dade County, Palm Beach County, Hillsborough County, Lee County and Orange County.

      Too bad we couldn’t get international observers, but it is what it is, and we are where we are.

      1. petal

        In Lebanon, NH we have paper ballots with those scantron machine jobbies. You fill in the bubbles with a pen/marker and slide it into the top of the machine.

        When I drove through Hanover this morning, traffic was very heavy at the high school at 710a for voting and a cop was standing outside. There were also literally dozens of signs that said “Vote Democrat. Stop Trump!” everywhere in downtown Hanover. They had appeared overnight. A town worker was pulling them up from in front of the Catholic church/bus stop. Started off the day disgusted and even more determined to vote how I had decided to. All they have is “But Trump!”, no policy, nothing else. When I vote this evening I’ll ask the workers if it’s been heavy and report back. I know it’s just one little place, but I feel like can’t contribute much but on the ground reports here and there. Will be listening to a lot of Faithless, Pink Floyd, and Rage Against the Machine today to channel this pissed-off/angry feeling.

        Cheers, y’all. Thank you to Yves, Lambert, and Jerri-Lyn for giving us this wonderful haven of sanity and rationality.

        1. RabidGandhi

          In discussions here about best election practises there was one idea I forgot to bring up. In my country there is a ban on all campaign advertising for the final week before the election, which obviously would have made illegal that blitz of signs you saw today. I don’t know if this is a “best” practise, but it’s certainly a way to mitigate the last-minute hysteria so you don’t have to listen to Pink Floyd.

          1. petal

            I dig that ban on campaign advertising in the final week! That would be really nice but I bet there would be a 1st amendment challenge.

            I had to go back into town this morning to mail some transcripts, and I walked up to one of those signs to read who bought them. The print was so tiny I couldn’t see it from my car on the commute in and had to walk right up to it in order to read it. It was the NH Dem Party. They even incorporated a right directional arrow (like in HC’s logo). Traffic was still super heavy around the high school (where the voting happens), and cops were directing traffic. It was giving the poor bus driver fits. This was around 1020a. Heard from a friend across the river in Hartford, VT that the line has been steady, but it was a big mess first thing in the morning. I think turn-out will end up being fairly high in NH. I wish I could upload a pic of the sign.

            The Rage Against the Machine has been working quite well so far. I’ll break out the Pink Floyd tonight while reading the open thread in hopes of chilling.

            1. HoarseWhisperer

              Petal –

              Hanover is solid Democrat territory. Hillary is very likely to get the same margin here like Obama did last time.

    2. EndOfTheWorld

      This election is not really that simple, because actually a lot of states are in play: Michigan, Pennsylvania, NC, even Minnesota and Wisconsin. The so-called “experts” have repeatedly proven they don’t know their ass from their elbow.

      This election could go all the way down to Hawaii, which the self-described experts assume is a solid blue state, but this year it could go for Trump.

      1. craazyboy

        Seems the polls would be particularly unreliable due to the late Sunday Comey flip flop. The Investor’s Business Daily / TIPP poll, acknowledged to be the most reliable, gave Trump a 2% lead. But that was pre-Comey data.

        Exit polling may be the only polling worthwhile. And necessary, unless they can rig it too.

        1. craazyboy

          Actually, I have been having these dreams of the Ghost Army from Lord of the Rings, all Democrats, enveloping swing states like a ghostly fog.

          1. craazyboy

            It may be too soon to start imagining Wednesday newspaper headlines, but one just popped into my head.

            Best Man FLOTUS To The TOP!

            Washington Post.

            But it’s early yet.

      2. Kokuanani

        Not a chance in hell Hawaii goes for Trump. Lived there for a number of years, and just checked both The Maui News and Honolulu Star Advertiser. I don’t know what “experts” you’re talking to, but clearly they’re smoking something if they’re saying Hawaii will vote Republican.


        “There is only one state Senate seat held by a Republican, Sam Slom, who has represented his district for 20 years. The wealthy district and its neighboring precincts are known for sending the state’s few Republicans to office. If he loses his seat to Stanley Chang, a 34-year-old Democrat, Hawaii could become the first state in the nation to have a one-party legislative body in decades. ” [Star Advertiser]

        1. EndOfTheWorld

          Just some anecdotal evidence from a Hawaii resident saying he sees more Trump signs than Clinton signs. But yeah it’s definitely a long shot for The Donald.

  1. apber

    Exit polling should determine the amount of fraud. There are various studies out there (sorry, no links) that conclude that exit polls should match actual results within a 2% error. If greater than 3%, very strong indication of fraud or vote machine rigging.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I recall reading but cannot readily find the link, that due to Sanders campaign challenges of primary results based on disparities between exit polls and final results, that all networks were cutting back substantially on exit polls for today’s vote. Readers, is my memory faulty?

      1. Tim

        That’s a really big deal if they cut back on exit polls, not just for obscuring potential fraud, but also for determining why voters voted the way they did. Typically these exit polls are used to reinforce the winners platform/mandate. 2012 election exit polls were heavily responsible for the momentum for immigration reform legislation, despite eventually dying in the house. They were also used heavily for the republican autopsy report, which also was for naught.

        Maybe that is part of the deal with reduced exit polls, people are giving up on a mandate for the winner and resigning themselves to gridlock.

        It would be very helpful if you could find an article on reduced exit polls.

      2. barrisj

        Excellent primer on exit polling for 2016 on the Vox website:

        28 states will have exit polling, obviously Repub and obviously Dem states won’t. The 28 will encompass ALL “battleground” and some fairly “safe” states for respective candidates.
        Also, Slate is running a “real-time” exit poll feature for 7 states only:
        FLA, IA, NH, NV, WI, PA, OH. Check it out here:

      3. tawal

        PBS Newshour had an expert from NPR on last night. He said that all the major networks and papers contract with the same firm together and get the info at the same time.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          That may be tantamount to cutting back. My impression was that there were more providers of exit polls. I recall in the primaries there were some big disparities (for instance, I recall in my gym telling a fellow Sanders fan that Fox made a call based on exit polls that was radically different than CNN’s for a Dem primary, and was claiming exit poll results 5 points at least 5 points more Sanders favorable than CNN), but that may also be a function of tight reporting budgets.

          1. tawal

            DOMENICO MONTANARO: So, exit polls are commissioned by the national media, the big broadcast organizations, some print organizations like The New York Times, The Washington Post, ABC, NBC, CNN, for example.

            They pay a group called Edison Research, which does — creates what’s called the National Exit Poll Consortium. It’s a lot of money. The public broadcasters, we should say, PBS, NPR, we’re not participating in it this time around. So when you see those numbers, they will be coming from that consortium.

            JUDY WOODRUFF: And they — what they do is, they have, what, thousands of people who go out around the country and interview people after they have left the polls.

            DOMENICO MONTANARO: That’s right.

            You will see about 100,000 people as part of the sample. And why that’s really amazing is that, when you think about a normal national poll, there’s about 1,000 people sampled, with about 3.5 percent margin of error.

            You’re talking about 100,000 people over the entire country, so much smaller margin of error when it comes to that. It would be every fourth person who leaves the exit polling place, an exit pollster would try to approach them and try to get them to take a questionnaire, fill it out and then that information is relayed back.

            JUDY WOODRUFF: And, Domenico, we have heard so much this year about how big the early vote is, something like, what, 40-some million people voting early. How do they measure those votes, or absentee votes, for example?

            DOMENICO MONTANARO: Well, when it comes to exit polling early voters, they will do a phone, a normal phone poll. So they will call a place like Washington state or Oregon or Colorado, where they do a lot of mail-only ballots, so that they can get demographic information to plug into the exit poll.

            JUDY WOODRUFF: And then so those news organizations that are part of this, they’re the ones, including the Associated Press, which we at the “NewsHour” will be relying on, they take that information, and then how do they turn that into a projected winner?

            DOMENICO MONTANARO: And us at NPR, too, we should say, are relying on the Associated Press’ calls….


            Hope this helps.

          2. Watt4Bob

            As republican expertise at electronic vote rigging were perfected, the embarrassment over discrepancies between exit polling and recorded vote results forced the increasingly tainted MSM to retreat from, and soft-focus on exit polling.

            I started to notice this happening back in 2000 as were asked to accept that Gore’s ~5%
            landslide was actually a 1% loss.

            It’s only within the USA that exit-polling has lost it’s function, that being the verification of whether the election is being conducted honestly.

            Since the MSM is part of the ‘fix’ their efforts to dilute the depth of, and the focus on exit-polling is logical.

            Start here at Richard Charnin’s Blog.

            I’ve never visited this site before, but it has some interesting data to back this observation.

            I would add that it’s very hard to find links to the few media mentions of deprecating exit-polls in practice, as well as reporting the results.

            For instance, it seems that exit poll data exists at the county level, but the media consortium that pays for it won’t give us the data at that level. Since most of the flagrant manipulation is most visible by examining the results county by county, the MSM is one of the primary actors blocking our ability to understand how our elections have been stolen.

    2. Lambert Strether.

      > sorry, no links

      So, in other words your claim is baseless speculation? Exit polls are not designed to determine fraud. One obvious reason they can’t is that they can’t take account of early voting, which is a real factor this year.

      1. barrisj

        So true, which is why the Slate “Votecastr” thingy has to be taken with the usual dollop of salt. But, in fairness to Slate/Votecastr, this is being framed as “experimental”, and may be either tweaked or junked next lekshun cycle.

      2. Watt4Bob

        Exit polls are not designed to determine fraud.

        While exit polls may not have been designed to determine if fraud has occurred, they are in fact the benchmark test which allows observers to determine its likelihood.

        We have been invited to believe that the only purpose exit polling serves is to allow our MSM to call the elections for TV audiences, this is a gross mis-understanding of their usefulness.

        The fact that they can’t take early voting into account is a rather recent development since early voting has never been as widespread as it has recently become.

        See my comment above, and check out the link.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Since when does your cell phone know your race and your party preference? Only a portion of blacks have obviously black names. This is pseudoscience.

  2. Robert Hahl

    The FBI voted for Trump. No matter how the election comes out, that certainly carried a lot of weight.

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