What I'm watching tonight

With 435 House races, 36 governor races and 35 Senate races -- not to mention all the ballot initiatives and...

Posted: Nov 7, 2018 4:47 AM
Updated: Nov 7, 2018 4:47 AM

With 435 House races, 36 governor races and 35 Senate races -- not to mention all the ballot initiatives and referenda -- it's impossible to watch everything. Unless you are very, very, very good at multitasking. Like, very good.

For the rest of us, it's very tough to know where to look. (Unless you are looking between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. EST, in which case you need to watch me analyze the hell out of this election on CNN's airwaves.) To that end, I've put together a handy-dandy, hour-by-hour tipsheet of a small handful of races I will be watching to see which way the wind is blowing. (Remember, in the immortal words of Bob Dylan, you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.)

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These are grouped by when polls close. And, yes, there are LOTS more races you can watch. (Here's a broader preview from CNN's expert political team.) But these are the races I'm watching:

6 p.m.

Kentucky's 6th district: Donald Trump won this seat by 15 points in 2016. So if Amy McGrath (D) beats Rep. Andy Barr (R), it's an early but important sign that Democrats are very likely to have a very good night.

7 p.m.

Indiana Senate: This is one of five states that Trump won by double digits in 2016 in which a Democratic senator -- in this case Joe Donnelly -- is trying to get re-elected. Trump stopped in Fort Wayne in his final day of campaigning on Monday, so you know how important he thinks this one is. If Donnelly loses, it's hard to see how Democrats' already narrow path to the Senate majority doesn't disappear.

Virginia's 7th district: Rep. Dave Brat's stunning primary upset of then-House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R) in 2014 heralded that takeover of the party that Trump brought to full fruition two years later. But Trump only won this seat with 50.5% in 2016, and Brat may simply be too conservative (and too Trump-y) for this electorate.

7:30 p.m.

West Virginia Senate: The expectation is that Sen. Joe Manchin (D) will beat state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) despite the fact that Trump carried the state by 43 points. What's most telling here is margin: If this race gets called by the networks by 8:30 p.m. (or earlier), it's going to be a good night for Democrats. If it's close as the vote rolls in and at midnight it's still not called, it's a sign Republicans are doing better than we expected.

8 p.m.

Florida governor: To my mind, the race between Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R) is the single most important race in the country. It's not just because Gillum is running as a representative of the new left -- non-white, unapologetically liberal -- or that DeSantis has hugged Trump as closely as any candidate in the country. It's also because whoever wins will be the highest-ranked elected official in the swingiest state headed into 2020, and will play a major role in how the state's legislative and congressional lines are drawn in 2021.

9 p.m.

Arizona Senate: If Democrats can re-elect Donnelly and Manchin, which means their hopes of taking the Senate majority still exist by the time polls close in Arizona, then the next domino they need to fall is Rep. Krysten Sinema (D) beating Rep. Martha McSally (R) in this open-seat race for Jeff Flake's seat. Sinema has led -- albeit narrowly -- for much of the race -- but Democrats have had very, very little success winning federal races in Arizona in recent years.

10 p.m.

Iowa governor: There's no question that Democrats are going to pick up governorships tonight. But how many? And where? Florida, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin may get more attention, but I am keeping a close eye on Iowa, where Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) is trying to win a full term. Reynolds is a down-the-line establishment Republican. But will she be lumped into Trump's category? And if she loses, what does that say about the state of the electorate in this most crucial of early 2020 states?

11 p.m.

California's 21st district: Want to know if it's a total and complete Democratic wave? Watch this seat, where Rep. David Valadao (R) has done everything right -- except represent a seat that Hillary Clinton won by 15.5 points in 2016. If this election is a negative referendum on Trump of significant proportions, Valadao loses.

The Point: This is a MASSIVE night in our modern American history. What happens tonight (and as we count all the votes and sift through the results tomorrow) could change the direction of our government and our country for the next two years. At least.

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 56441

Reported Deaths: 1136
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson7012170
Mobile5061140
Montgomery4599112
Tuscaloosa274353
Madison25359
Marshall205012
Shelby176425
Lee164737
Morgan13975
Baldwin134111
Walker111332
Elmore107622
Etowah106914
Dallas10189
DeKalb10017
Franklin95016
Unassigned77728
Autauga71515
Russell7130
Chambers68530
Cullman6686
Limestone6653
Butler65529
Houston6417
Tallapoosa63069
Lauderdale6006
St. Clair5983
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Colbert5286
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Lowndes49222
Pike4805
Jackson4422
Coffee4364
Covington43512
Talladega4177
Dale4061
Barbour4022
Bullock37810
Hale36323
Marengo36111
Chilton3452
Blount3311
Clarke3236
Wilcox3158
Marion30914
Winston3095
Sumter29713
Pickens2786
Randolph2759
Monroe2683
Perry2552
Conecuh2388
Bibb2271
Macon2229
Choctaw22012
Greene2009
Henry1573
Washington1529
Lawrence1460
Crenshaw1343
Cherokee1317
Geneva1010
Fayette901
Clay892
Lamar891
Coosa671
Cleburne481
Out of AL00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 65274

Reported Deaths: 749
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby14163224
Davidson13976146
Rutherford375539
Hamilton353538
Sumner204056
Williamson193916
Knox171710
Out of TN166012
Trousdale15105
Wilson126117
Putnam10817
Unassigned10772
Bradley10104
Robertson97313
Sevier9244
Montgomery8247
Tipton7177
Lake6960
Macon6467
Bledsoe6311
Bedford6309
Hamblen5084
Maury4993
Hardeman4444
Madison3842
Fayette3805
Rhea3500
Blount3483
Loudon3312
Dyer3023
McMinn29319
Cheatham2873
Dickson2820
Washington2760
Lawrence2506
Sullivan2485
Cumberland2294
Anderson2112
Gibson2031
Jefferson1931
Lauderdale1934
Smith1852
Warren1590
Greene1572
Monroe1566
Coffee1520
Cocke1460
Haywood1413
Hardin1407
Obion1273
Marshall1232
Wayne1230
Franklin1223
Giles1221
McNairy1171
Hickman1120
Carter1082
Marion1014
DeKalb990
Hawkins952
Lincoln950
White933
Roane880
Henderson830
Chester810
Overton791
Weakley791
Claiborne760
Campbell721
Grundy672
Crockett653
Unicoi600
Grainger590
Cannon580
Carroll571
Polk570
Henry540
Sequatchie520
Jackson500
Johnson490
Humphreys482
Perry430
Meigs400
Decatur350
Morgan341
Fentress290
Scott290
Union280
Stewart270
Clay230
Houston230
Moore230
Benton161
Hancock120
Lewis120
Van Buren90
Pickett80

 

 

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