Good evening from the BDN Portland team, which is heavily caffeinated and scattered around the city this evening, covering all the big races.
What’s up with the election so far
— Follow our live coverage here for the most up-to-date information. It will kick into high gear around 6 pm.
— After polls close at 8 pm, we’ll have returns up on our site as soon as they come in. Here’s the link to see results for Cumberland County. Here’s the link for every race in the state (seriously, all of them.)
— There isn’t a whole lot of suspense around how the 1st Congressional District will vote, but Michael Shepherd reports that the 2nd is “one of the most heavily watched battleground areas in the nation on Tuesday in a Democratic state that hasn’t given any of its four Electoral College votes to a Republican since 1988.”
— What we know for sure is that a ton of people are voting or have voted. Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap told the Press Herald this morning that this election could have an historic turnout — topping 70 percent.
Here’s what my polling place looked like this morning.
And the line to vote at the Portland Exposition Building was 100-deep at 7:30 am, Troy R. Bennett reported. How was voting where you were?
— Kathleen Pierce this morning rode the bus with some Portlanders who were taking advantage of the free METRO service.
— We’ve teamed up with ProPublica and about 250 other newsrooms to investigate voting problems or irregularities at the polls. If you have any trouble voting today, text “Electionland” to 68966, or fill out the online reporting form and someone at the BDN will look into it.
— Troy wrote a song today about voting. It’s great. Watch him perform it here.
What to do tonight
Kathleen Pierce has the details:
— If you show up at Liquid Riot Bottling Company at 250 Commercial St. wearing an “I voted” sticker, and order food or a drink, you’ll get two free tasters of Liquid Riot beer or booze. You may need them.
— Empire, at 575 Congress St., is the place to watch the election results on the big screen. There will be live music starting at 8 p.m. and plenty of people to celebrate with as the results come in.
The Big Idea
‘The real warriors of 2016’ — Shane Goldmacher of Politico reports that the candidates may get all the glory, but behind the scenes, dedicated groups of staffers have made huge sacrifices to elect them.
It can be easy to squint at the presidential campaign and see only Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, two larger-than-life candidates who can be impossible to relate to — a billionaire businessman and a former secretary of state, senator and first lady — inhuman gladiators doing battle in the American political arena.
But behind them, often ignored as part of the landscape, is a mountain of men and women who are, in many ways, the real warriors of 2016, people who have sacrificed, suffered and put their lives on hold in service of a cause or candidate that they believe is bigger than themselves.
It is a life of long days and short nights. From senior strategists to traveling aides, they have missed children’s birthdays and their own honeymoons. Weddings have been rescheduled and missed; relationships severed. There have been births and deaths. It is an all-encompassing life of 18 months (or more) — all while being told they are working for one of the two most unpopular presidential candidates in history. Some, quite literally, have fought for their very lives without taking time to step away, so sure that the work is bigger than themselves.
Got any interesting story ideas, suggestions or links to share? Email Dan MacLeod at firstname.lastname@example.org, or tweet @dsmacleod.
As always, like BDN Portland on Facebook for more local coverage.