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Election updates live: Who's winning, who's voting, and what we know

by VICE News
Nov 8 2016, 7:00pm

Want to watch the 2016 election results roll in from across the country with VICE News? You’ve come to the right place. We have our eye on the top of the ticket, sure, but we’re also watching down-ballot races, wonky initiatives, and reactions from voters and the campaigns. Check back for regular updates throughout the evening.

1:30 a.m.

We’re still waiting on calls from several key states and don’t know when those are likely to come, so consider this our final update here. We’ll have full coverage overnight and all day Wednesday on VICE News.

11:15 p.m.

Florida and North Carolina are called for Trump

Florida and North Carolina are two of the first true swing states to go Trump, according to the Associated Press.

Florida, the biggest battleground state, would deliver 29 electoral votes. President Obama won the state in both 2008 and 2012. Trump leads Clinton by 1.4 percentage points there, 49.1 percent to 47.7 percent, according to the New York Times. CNN is still mum on the race.

Michigan, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin are still too close to call. — Emma Fidel

10:45 p.m.

Swing states so far

It’s going to be a long night. Only two swing (or swingy) states have been called so far: Ohio for Trump and Virginia for Clinton. The latter was looking close an hour ago, but Clinton managed to eke out a slim victory by half a percentage point. That doesn’t mean her campaign is breathing any easier — Clinton’s campaign had counted on Virginia to be an easy victory. Florida, Michigan, North Carolina and New Hampshire are all still tossups. — Olivia Becker

How about those third-party candidates?

It’s still early, but it looks like the two third-party candidates are going to fall short of the 5 percent popular vote threshold necessary to get equal ballot access and federal campaign funding in the next election. Libertarian Gary Johnson currently has about 3 percent of the national vote, while the Green Party’s Jill Stein has less than 1 percent.

But even with their minuscule support nationwide, the two candidates could have an outsize impact on the presidential race. With 99 percent of precincts reporting in Florida, Johnson and Stein have 266,208 votes. Clinton currently trails Trump in the state by 135,296 votes. — Keegan Hamilton

10:15 p.m.

Eyes on Michigan

It was startling that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama both made last-minute visits to Michigan the day before Election Day after barely visiting the state during the campaign. Tonight, we know why. With a little more than a quarter of the vote in after 10 p.m., Trump has a lead of 2 points, defying poll numbers that showed him behind in the state by several points.

Michigan also surprised experts during the Democratic primary when Bernie Sanders pulled off a surprising win there. Michigan is part of a series of Rust Belt states including Ohio, Iowa, and Wisconsin that have large white populations, a constituency that has shown solidarity with Trump. — Alex Thompson

9:45 p.m.

The only guarantee right now is that liberals are freaking out on Twitter

First the experts thought there was no chance Brexit would pass in the United Kingdom. Then the experts thought Columbia would accept a historic peace deal ending a long civil war. And then experts thought Donald Trump had almost no chance of winning the presidency.

As voting results begin to come in across the country, however, American liberals are beginning to panic that the experts were wrong yet again.

Even conservative elites began to despair:

And the New York Times set hysteria into overdrive:

9:20 p.m.

Even the nerds are confused

Tuesday morning, nearly all the pundits, forecasters and statistician soothsayers were predicting Clinton would win the election by a comfortable margin. But as early results begin to trickle in, it’s becoming less and less clear what is going to happen tonight.

Earlier this evening, the New York Times election forecast had Clinton with a 84 percent chance of winning the presidency. That number had plummeted to 62 percent at 9:20 pm.

Nate Silver’s army of statisticians at FiveThirtyEight are more steady. The site had Clinton’s chances at 78 percent for most of the day, before going down to 71 percent earlier this evening. It has now inched up to 73 percent.

Betting markets are showing an even bigger drop for Clinton, whose odds have plummeted nearly 25 points since 7 p.m., according to one aggregator. Other markets have shown similar drops. — Olivia Becker

Of course Trump has a cash bar at his own party

Trump’s competitiveness in this race is largely due to his popularity with white working-class voters — none of whom could afford the price-gouging cash bar at his Election Night party in New York City. Soda is $7 a pop. Wine is $13 a pour. But in keeping with his nationalist campaign, imported beer ($11) is more expensive than domestic beer ($10). — Alex Thompson

8:45 p.m.

The first flip in the Senate

Democratic congresswoman and Iraq War veteran Tammy Duckworth has defeated Republican Sen. Mark Kirk to become the next senator from Illinois. The Republican Party had all but given up hope for Kirk, but Duckworth’s win was essential to the Democratic Party’s plan take back control of the Senate. Two Republican senators whom the Democrats had targeted — Florida’s Marco Rubio and Ohio’s Rob Portman — coasted to reelection earlier in the evening. The remaining contested Senate races in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, and North Carolina are each vital to the Democrats’ ambitions. — Alex Thompson

Republicans will keep the House

Republicans are expected to hold onto control of the House of Representatives, per an early projection by NBC News.

This result was not unexpected — Democrats would have had to deliver a seismic upset in order to pick up the 30 seats they needed to retake the chamber. — Olivia Becker

Medical marijuana wins easily in Florida

A whopping 71 percent of Florida voters cast ballots in favor of medical marijuana on Tuesday, according to the latest polling results. The measure dramatically expands access to medical pot, allowing people with PTSD, epilepsy, Parkinson’s, and several other debilitating conditions to use the drug with a doctor’s prescription. Four other states are voting on medical marijuana ballot initiatives tonight, and five will decide whether to legalize weed for recreational use. — Keegan Hamilton

Pantsuiting up

Hillary Clinton’s signature outfit has gone from fashion statement to political statement this Election Day. Pantsuits took over social media Tuesday, as women — and some men — suited up to go to the polls. A “secret” Facebook group, Pantsuit Nation, has become the go-to place for close to 3 million Clinton fans to share messages of encouragement. — Emma Fidel

8:15 p.m.

Polls have now closed in 27 states and D.C.

Many of those are still too close to call, but the networks are already projecting winners in quite a few.

Clinton is expected to win:

  • Illinois
  • New Jersey
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Rhode Island
  • Delaware
  • Washington, D.C.

And Trump is expected to win:

  • Oklahoma
  • Tennessee
  • Mississippi

Florida, Florida, Florida

In 2000, the Sunshine State kept the nation waiting for 35 days while state officials tried to figure out who won the state and the presidency. Eventually the Supreme Court decided for them. In 2012, Florida again kept it close even as President Obama coasted to reelection. The margin was less than 1 percent.

But in 2016, there are early signs that Florida might not keep the rest of America in suspense for long, in part because of Latino voters. The population of Puerto Rican immigrants has surged in the state, and its resident Cuban-Americans have gradually drifted toward the Democratic Party. It appears that Hillary Clinton’s campaign has gotten them to the polls. Early voters who described themselves as Hispanic on their voter registration forms made up 15 percent of the early vote, as opposed to 12 percent of the state’s total vote in 2012. In Orange County, which has a large Puerto Rican population, Clinton was winning by 25 points. Obama won the county by 18 in 2012.

VoteCastr’s Election Day model projected Clinton up 49 percent to 45 percent over Trump with 84 percent of the expected total in.

Soon after the polls closed in most of Florida, the Associated Press declared that erstwhile GOP presidential hopeful Marco Rubio has won reelection to the Senate. Since the presidential race in the state remains too close to call, the quick Rubio announcement suggests that hundreds of thousands of Floridians may have voted for Rubio for Senate but voted for Clinton for president. Alex Thompson

Conservatives on Twitter aren’t sure how to react

With early results showing Clinton pulling ahead in a series of key states, Republicans reacted with a mixture of sorrow, resignation, and full-out denial on Twitter.

It all comes down to us Florida. Trump is surging in counties all across the state, let's do this #MAGASelfie #MAGA3X #ElectionDay #Voted

The last time Donald Trump himself tweeted was four hours ago, before any results were in:

— Olivia Becker

7:15 p.m.

Vermont for Clinton! Indiana for Trump! Kentucky for Trump!

We have 47 states and several more hours to go, but Donald Trump is leading Hillary Clinton in the Electoral College 19-3 after the Associated Press called the first three races at 7 p.m. Eastern time.

But the real estate mogul is always careful to hedge his bets. Before the polls closed, Trump’s campaign was already beginning to spread possible excuses for a loss. Campaign manager Kellyanne Conway told MSNBC that Trump “didn’t have the full support of the Republican infrastructure.”

It’s true that many sitting Republican lawmakers and former Republican presidents chose not to throw their weight behind Trump’s bid for the Oval Office. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan told Republican members of Congress that he would not campaign for Trump (although he did vote for him). But Trump also depended on the existing Republican Party infrastructure to get people out to vote, and he did not match fundraising efforts for the party as is usually expected of the nominee. — Alex Thompson