Today, polls are opened in every U.S. state for the Presidential Election Day. However, more than 100 million Americans have already voted early – a record number which may shift the final results of this year’s election.
Officials and specialists alike were taken aback by the discrepancy in voters’ numbers compared to the 2016 elections. At that time, approximately 139 million people voted and only one third of the votes were cast ahead of Election Day.
According to data from the US Elections Project, 99.7 million votes had already been cast by 1 a.m. on Tuesday; that’s exactly 72.3% of the total votes recorded in the 2016 election.
The early votes from this year are 35 million in-person votes and about 64 million returned mail-in ballots, with another 28 million mail-in ballots outstanding.
Less voters on Election Day
Since there have been so many early ballots cast, officials expect few voters to arrive on Election Day than those who have already voted early.
However, even early voters couldn’t avoid queues which lasted for hours in some states partly due to coronavirus safety measures.
As for the millions who voted by mail, their vote also opened a door for current President Donald Trump to insist on his presumption that this process is vulnerable to fraud. In previous statements, Mr. Trump repeatedly said that he plans to contest the validity of multiple (mailed) ballots in an attempt of disqualifying them.
Will we know who wins tonight?
The large number of mail-in ballots could mean that we might not find out with certainty who gets the White House for the next four years tonight. That is because, as we’ve explained previously, it can take up to 14 business days in some states until they will have finished counting all of the ballots.
This unprecedented situation further increase the suspense in one of the most anticipated Presidential races in the U.S. history.
How candidates are spending the day
Current President Donald Trump had just returned to the White House early Tuesday following a day of campaigning. In fact, he ended his last campaign rally shortly after 1 a.m. on Election Day.
Mr. Trump’s plans regarding this anticipated event are, once again, controversial to the public. The President is intending to host a so-called ‘election night party’ where he reportedly invited more than 100 guests. Multiple other parties for Donald Trump were expected, including one held at the Trump Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue.
Meanwhile, Democratic opponent Joe Biden went to the church first thing in the morning. Then, he went on to visit his late son Beau’s gravesite where he spent a little time in silence. Later on, he held a canvassing event in Scranton, Pennsylvania. His running companion Kamala Harris was campaigning in Detroit and the two would meet up in Wilmington for election night.
The most recent national polls show that Democratic candidate Joe Biden is leading by 10% over Trump. According to the Decision Desk HQ, an election forecasting company, Biden could have a chance of 86.7% of winning the election.
However, we have to consider the fact that for some key states such as Pennsylvania it might take days or even weeks until they count all their ballots. We must also keep in mind that such polls can always be wrong as they are just general predictions.
It could take weeks until we get an official winner of the White House and months until we start noticing the impact of our choice.
For now, the only thing that’s certain is your vote. Are you happy with your decision? Are you proud of supporting a certain candidate?
Sometime over the following days, one of the most tumultuous campaigns in U.S. history ends – but how will we remember the results?