Election Day is Here and Everyone Needs to Relax

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Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

This graphic details the electoral college results from the 2016 election. The 2020 election is similar to the 2016 one in that neither times the results were clear by election night.

Isabella Mahar, Opinion Editor

Election day anxiety is at an all time high- 68%– and for good reason. Whatever side you are on, politics are tense. The country has been anticipating the 2020 race since the last inauguration, when President Trump announced that he was seeking the bid for re-election. However, as much as everyone wants it all to be over tonight, that’s probably not going to happen. 

There will most likely not be a clear result by the end of tonight, and it may even be a week before the results are finalized and there is a winner. This is without court challenges, which are a possibility given how tight the race is in certain key battleground states. 

This year, mail-in ballots have become both extremely popular and  highly contested. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many have decided to mail-in their ballot in order to avoid any potential risk going to a physical polling booth could cause.

Depending on when the mail-in ballots are starting to be counted, there could be a strong Trump or Biden lead that switches when these ballots are counted. Same goes for House, Senate, Congressional, and even proposition races which could switch after all the mail-in ballots are counted. 

It has been proven that Democrats are much more likely to use mail-in ballots, while Republicans are more prone to in person voting”

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In addition, mail-in ballots are often counted post election day. In California, as long as the ballots are postmarked by November 3rd, they are counted which means it will take longer for results to be official as ballots continue to come in following election day. Even international votes from US citizens abroad are counted, which adds to the time. 

“Races have never been decided on election night… And if we did we’d be disenfranchising the many people serving our country overseas, their ballots are not due for a full week after election day,” said Pennsylvania Secretary of State, Kathy Boockvar on the Today show. 

All this is not special to this year too. There has never been official results on election night, as with the time that takes to count the mail in ballots. While Donald Trump was projected to win the day in 2016, it was not certified until several weeks later. 

“Look here’s the good news if we don’t find out tonight, this election will be no different than just about every one in the past. Just in 2016, Biden wasn’t in it, but Trump was. He won Arizona and Michigan, but we didn’t find out on election night, so that’s not unusual,” said CNN news anchor, Chris Cuomo. 

While all the circumstances this year are extraordinary, election results taking time is completely normal. So when going to bed tonight, know that whatever the results seem to be on election night, they could still end up changing.