Elections | WYPR

Elections

Election coverage from WYPR and NPR.

Polls are not the only place people look to for guidance to Election Day outcomes. Lots of people believe in bellwethers.

The first two things to know about bellwethers is that there's no letter "a" in the word, and bellwethers don't have anything to do with predicting the weather. The name refers to the neutered rams that shepherds use to guide flocks in the right direction. The wether trots along when the shepherd calls, the bell at his neck jangles, and the other sheep come ambling after him.

From pretty much the very start of this election season, Donald Trump grabbed the media by the press pass. He didn't even wait. As Trump, a former reality show host, once said in a slightly different context, "When you're a star, they let you do it."

Aside from the cliches that it all comes down to turnout and that the only poll that counts is the one on Election Day, one more truism that talking heads will repeat endlessly Tuesday is that demographics are destiny.

It may make you want to throw a shoe at the TV (or radio), but (as they say) cliches are cliches for a reason. Breaking the electorate into these smaller chunks tells a lot about what people like and dislike about a candidate, not to mention how a rapidly changing electorate is changing the fundamentals of U.S. presidential politics.

No matter who wins the presidential election on Tuesday, it's nearly certain Congress will be more narrowly divided come January.

And with no clear mandate likely coming out of 2016, there is little reason to be overly optimistic that the next Congress can escape the cycle of unproductivity and polarization that has gripped Washington in recent years.


The 115th Congress: Political Dynamics

With little chance of a Democratic House takeover in the 2016 election, the two likeliest scenarios are:

Maryland Voices: Out of the polls

Nov 4, 2016
P. Kenneth Burns

What do most Baltimore City voters fear as they cast their ballots?  That Donald Trump will be elected the next president of these United States of America…North America.

Rachel Baye

This post was updated at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 4.

Early voting ended Thursday, and record numbers of Maryland residents cast ballots before Election Day this year. Here is a look at the numbers:

WYPR 2016 Election Coverage

Nov 3, 2016

*WYPR will be updating this page throughout election night as local and national results roll in. 

The FBI has opened a civil rights investigation into the vandalizing and burning of a black church in Mississippi. "Vote Trump" had been spray-painted on a wall.

Local authorities are still searching for the person or people responsible for the fire, which they have identified as an arson.

"When firefighters arrived at Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church Tuesday night, they found it in flames, and the 'Vote Trump' slogan written in silver spray paint on the outside wall of the church," Mark Rigsby of Mississippi Public Broadcasting reports.

Americans will decide more than 150 state ballot measures on Tuesday — up slightly from two years ago. That puts a lot of pressure on voters to study up on everything from marijuana legalization to gun control to the death penalty.

Californians in particular have a lot of homework to do. With 17 measures, their state has the longest ballot in the country this year. On top of that, there are 650 local measures around the state to decide on.

Rachel Baye

With Election Day less than a week away, Sen. Ben Cardin and Rep. Chris Van Hollen visited Baltimore's Lexington Market on Wednesday to remind voters to go to the polls.

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