TIME sweden

Sweden Is Holding Snap Elections for the First Time Since 1958

Sweden Government Defeat
Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Lofven talks at a press conference at Stockholm, Sweden, Tuesday Dec. 2, 2014. Pontus Lundahl—AP

Extraordinary measure comes after anti-immigrant party derails the Prime Minister's budget proposal

Sweden’s new Prime Minister Stefan Lofven has called for snap elections, the country’s first in nearly 60 years, after a populist anti-immigration party trashed his attempt to build support for his first budget proposal.

The decision was announced Wednesday, a day after the Sweden Democrat party chose to back the opposition’s alternative budget, a move almost unheard of in a country long known to seek broad, political consensus, Wall Street Journal reports.

Lofven’s minority government, formed between his Swedish Social Democratic Party and the Green Party after the election on Sept. 14, was weak from the start. He has since reached out to center-right parties to find support for his budget, but the Sweden Democrats, who placed third in the election, were systematically shut out of the discussions.

This week, the Sweden Democrats said they planned to derail future budget proposals that continue current spending on immigration.

The snap election will be held on March 22.


TIME Tunisia

The First Free Tunisian Election Is Heading Toward a Runoff

A Tunisian citizen casts her vote at a polling station during the Tunisian presidential election on Nov. 23, 2014, in Fouchana, suburb of Tunis Nicolas Fauque—Images des Tunisie/Sipa USA/AP

But former Prime Minister Beji Caid Essebsi appears to be in front

Neither of the two main candidates is likely to win an outright majority in the first free Tunisian presidential election, with a runoff likely.

Former Prime Minister Beji Caid Essebsi appears to be in front for the Dec. 28 second round, after receiving between 42% and 47% of the vote according to two private exit polls, the New York Times reports.

His opponent, interim President Moncef Marzouki, won between 29% to 32% of the vote.

Tunisia comes out of two disorderly years governed by an Islamist-led coalition, of which Marzouki’s party was a part.

The electoral commission said voting participation was 60%, reports the Associated Press. Official results are expected in the coming days.

TIME Newsmaker Interview

Mary Landrieu Talks to TIME About the Fight of Her Political Life

Sen. Landrieu Gathers With Supporters On Election Night In New Orleans
U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) gathers with supporters during midterm elections at the Hyatt Regency in New Orleans on Nov. 4, 2014. Stacy Revere—Getty Images

The senior Senator from Louisiana talks hardball politics and Keystone XL at a campaign stop in New Orleans

Mary Landrieu did not look like a politician on the brink of extinction as she arrived at the National World War II Museum’s crowded Veterans Day get-together in her hometown of New Orleans on Tuesday. With the hulks of retired warplanes suspended overhead, the senior Senator from Louisiana made her way toward the stage through a sea of smiles, handshakes and hugs from old friends. She stopped for a chat with the New Orleans Maritime Marine Academy Band before taking a seat on stage next to the mayor, who is also her little brother.

But as the Senate Democrats’ final flag-bearer in the Deep South, Landrieu is every bit the last of an endangered political species. In a three-way contest on Election Day earlier this month, she finished first with 42% compared to 40% for Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy and 14% for Tea Party favorite Rob Maness. Landrieu and Cassidy now go head-to-head in a runoff Dec. 6, and many of Maness’ supporters are expected to back her Republican opponent.

Landrieu has been all but abandoned by the national Democratic Party ahead of the runoff. Cassidy and his supporters have paid for 96% of the ads aired since the runoff began, while the national Democratic campaigns have pulled virtually all of their money out of the race.

But Landrieu is putting a brave face on it. Democrats throughout the South took an Election Day beating in part because voters saw the midterms as a referendum on President Obama, Landrieu says. With the GOP soon to be in control of the Senate, the Republican majority is no longer at stake and Landrieu hopes that fact will give her space to focus the race back on Louisiana. “We have the race that we want!” she declared after results came in election night.

The magic number for Landrieu to win that race is “30”, say campaign aides. Black voters, a solidly Democratic constituency, must comprise 30% of the electorate and she’s got to win 30% of white votes, the aides say. She has a ways to go to make those numbers. On November 4, she took just 18% of white votes—if she hopes to keep her job she’ll have to win over the rest.

To get there, Landrieu is playing up her more than 18 years as a moderate deal-maker in the Senate and her lengthy record of bringing home the proverbial bacon. Among the projects she has managed to bring to Louisiana, Landrieu reminded the crowd on Veterans Day, was the National World War II Museum in which they were all gathered.

After speeches from Landrieu, her brother Mitch the mayor, Republican Sen. David Vitter and Marine Corps Colonel Bradley Weisz (who was the only speaker all day to mention President Obama), Landrieu sat down with TIME to discuss her uphill political battle.

TIME: You mentioned after the election that this is the campaign you’ve always wanted. Why? The numbers are daunting—

Sen. Mary Landrieu: Hold on. The campaign I wanted is a campaign against Bill Cassidy. Not against the entire anger at the national government. And the first race was so much anger about gridlock in Washington, now that that race is over the Republicans have taken control of the Senate. Mitch McConnell is now going to be the Majority Leader. Barack Obama has been in some ways repudiated by the voters nationally. Not personally, but some of his policies. I think now voters here can focus on what’s best for Louisiana. So this is the race that I’ve wanted to run, between Mary Landrieu and Bill Cassidy. Running on my record against his record. And if we can get voters to focus on that I’m confident of a victory.

In recent days you’ve been highlighting things like the gender gap, the minimum wage, issues that particularly affect women.

OK, yes but what you need to be corrected on is that I’ve been highlighting those issues since the first day of the campaign. You would write it wrong. This is not a recent switch. I’ve been talking about minimum wage, pay equity, Lilly Ledbetter, since the first day of this campaign because economic issues are really at the heart of what Louisiana voters want to focus on. Oil and gas jobs, worker training, the skills gap, fair wages and benefits. I’ve talked about that since the first day of the campaign.

Now, a lot of that’s been drowned out by my opponent who won’t discuss that in any way, shape or form. All he wants to talk about is the President. And, as I’ve said, I’ve now worked with three presidents, six governors and four majority leaders. The race that I want to run is a race about: Has Mary Landrieu delivered for Louisiana? And what has she done? And what kind of teams has she built? What kind of record does she have versus Bill Cassidy. If I can get that race, we will win. I will win.

With Republicans in control of the Senate is Keystone XL going to go through?

That’s a good question. We’re actually very close to getting Keystone passed right now. I’ve been working very hard on a stand alone vote on Keystone. You might think that it’ll be easier in January but you would be jumping to a conclusion that’s not yet proven, because in order to get Keystone passed, remember, it has to be passed by the House and the same bill by the Senate and then signed into law by the President. So, if you think about getting a clean bill, like my bill, like the one I have with Hoeven, it’s a Hoeven-Landrieu bill, it has 45 Republican co-sponsors plus a few Democrats. A clean stand-alone Keystone bill could potentially pass right now.

So when you ask me is it going to be easier, I can’t say yes because in January the Republicans may put a bill together with Keystone and let’s say five other things. See that? And then it passes the House and then it fails in the Senate, or it passes the House, the Senate and the President vetoes it. So my answer is: it is possible right now, right now, I think, to get a clean Keystone bill passed that the President to the United States could actually sign.

You were chatting with the kids in the Marine band over there. What were you talking about?

Well, I’m a huge supporter of the creation of this school. I’ve led the fight here in Louisiana on charter schools. I’m an elected leader on public charter schools. I’ve helped to create more charter schools per capita than anywhere else in the nation. So I visit them frequently and I was just saying that I’ll be there to see them again. Their school is growing. As I said in my speech, we have two charter military schools, first in the nation, and we’re really proud of that. The Pentagon and the military are really interested in using that model all over the country for other schools.

TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: Why Even Red States Want a Higher Minimum Wage

The first minimum wage was $0.25. Today, that’s $4.22

San Francisco and Oakland voted Tuesday to increase their minimum wages, and so did four states that roundly backed Republicans. Rising standards of living and inflation may be what triggered this increase, but is paying workers more the one issue we can all agree on?

Watch #TheBrief to find out what’s driving the push to pay their workers more.

TIME politics

The Swedish Way To Boost Voter Turnout

Getty Images

Whether you’re in high-turnout Sweden or low-turnout L.A., the task of getting people to participate must be a constant, year-round focus of attention, not just an issue of concern at election time

I did not receive the warmest welcome from my colleagues four years ago, at my very first meeting of the Falun Election Commission. In fact, most members of the authority in Falun, the Swedish city of 57,000 where I live, were surprised I had called a meeting at all.

“What is this all about?” a colleague asked me. “The next elections are in four years and we had just an election with a great turnout. The only thing we are elected to do is administer the next elections.”

My colleague had a point. The Swedish law makes clear the election commission’s job is to administer election, full stop. And participation in the 2010 local, regional and national elections here in Sweden—which are held together at the same time—was terrific. Turnout of those eligible to vote was 82 percent.

That may sound like another world entirely to people in the U.S. where I’m visiting this week in part to observe preparations for Tuesday’s elections. I know that many places in the country, including California, where I’m writing this, are experiencing record low turnout.

But I also know this: Whether you’re in high-turnout Sweden or low-turnout L.A., the task of getting people to participate must be a constant, year-round focus of attention, not just an issue of concern at election time. Conventional wisdom is that turnout is beyond the control of election organizers. I’d suggest—after spending the past four years trying to raise turnout for the 2014 elections—that election administrators can make the difference.

I’m highly sensitive to the issues of participation because democracy is such a big part of my life. I’m a professional journalist for Swiss radio who covers a lot of elections around Europe and the world. I’ve been an official observer of elections (my co-observer President Jimmy Carter failed to show up when we were paired recently as observers of Taiwanese elections). And I vote in two different countries because I’m a citizen of Sweden and Switzerland, as well as the European Union.

In all these contexts, I’ve seen that the places with the greatest participation do not necessarily have the most media coverage and campaign materials demanding that people show up at the polls. The places that improve participation tend to be places where regular people connect with politics and make collective decisions all the time, not just in election season.

How to create these connections? You need to strengthen existing institutions—and build new ones—that encourage active citizenship year-round.

In Falun, I wanted to take advantage of new initiative and referendum rights in Sweden and Europe to try to boost participation. After that first uncomfortable meeting, my colleagues decided that the role of our local government was to make sure that people understood these new rights and how to use them.

But it wasn’t enough to just notify people. My colleagues on the commission insisted on a test of our work in what came to be called a “supersized participation challenge.” All of our work between elections would be measured by whether or not voting participation increased.

One of our first ideas was to develop and distribute a “Democracy Passport” to every citizen; We made an extra effort to get it into the hands of first-time voters. The passport is the size and shape of a national passport, and it described all the political powers that Falun citizens have and all the forums where they have the right to weigh in—at the city, state, country and European Union level. The passport explains which levels of government do what, as well as what you can do to influence the government.

We also opened a “Democracy Center” at our public library, offering a free public space for democratic information, education, and dialogue. We hired a full-time “Democracy Navigator,” whose job was to assist individual citizens and groups to make their voices heard. Finally we started to renew the city’s online services, incorporating modern forms of transparency and citizen interaction.

We did all of this with the agreement of each of the nine political parties in the city parliament, which consists of 61 members. Our message was a paradigm shift: We need to move away from the idea that citizens are just consumers of political programs and parties and start seeing them as direct participants in the community. In this, we had a distinct advantage: Sweden’s long history of democracy has generated significant trust in public institutions.

After three years of work (in which I also chaired another public body, the Falun Democracy Council, which did related work), we reached the “months of truth” this year. Elections for the European Union parliament were held in May, and then the joint elections for local, regional and national Swedish parliaments were held in September.

Determined to boost participation, we made use of our very generous voting regulations—we permit early voting, voting by mail, and even second voting. What’s second voting? People who voted early can go to a polling station on Election Day and change their vote in person; When people do this, the vote in the polling station is accepted and the advance vote declared invalid.

We also have automatic voter registration—you don’t have to sign up yourself. And we have been aggressive in making sure that voters who were not born in Sweden but have lived here for three years (non-citizens with residency can vote in local and regional elections) are on the rolls. We organized meetings with Somali-Swedish women, translated the Democracy Passport into Arabic, and invited new voters to participate in walks we organized and staffed with interpreters to the offices of elected officials, political parties and interest groups.

In the end, we met the supersizing challenge. At the European elections in May—elections where turnout has been lowest in Sweden—we boosted turnout from 45 percent to 54 percent, among the highest in Sweden.

And in the mid-September elections, we went from 82 percent to 87 percent. That’s healthy, of course. But it’s not good enough. We’re already planning for the next elections, and thinking about how to invest more in our democratic infrastructure.

Bruno Kaufmann, a journalist and election commissioner in Falun, Sweden, is founder of People2Power, a publication on democracy. He wrote this for Zocalo Public Square.

TIME Ideas hosts the world's leading voices, providing commentary and expertise on the most compelling events in news, society, and culture. We welcome outside contributions. To submit a piece, email ideas@time.com.

MONEY stocks

What the Republican Majority Means for the Market

Senate at US Capitol
AA World Travel Library—Alamy

Will the Republican victory in the Senate lead to more legislation or gridlock? As far as Wall Street is concerned, that doesn't matter as the markets are about to enter their most fruitful months.

With most of the votes counted in the mid-term elections, Republicans picked up at least seven seats in the Senate last night, giving the GOP control of both houses of Congress for the first time in a decade.

The GOP’s majority in the Senate could still widen, depending on the count in Alaska and a December run-off in Louisiana, where neither Democratic incumbent Mary Landrieu nor Republican challenger Bill Cassidy won 50% of the popular vote in a three-person race.

Are the Republicans now in position to set a new economic agenda into motion? Or will the final two years of President Obama’s term be characterized by more of the gridlock that has largely stifled serious policy discussions in recent years?

As far as Wall Street is concerned, it doesn’t really matter. Here’s why.

1. We are about to enter the third year of the Obama administration. And third years are hands-down the best years in the stock market.

In fact, since 1926, the S&P 500 has gained nearly 17% on average in Year 3 of presidential terms, according to the investment research firm the Leuthold Group. The next-best years for stocks are presidential election years, when equities have gained 9.8% on average.

Jeffrey Hirsch, editor-in-chief of the Stock Trader’s Almanac, adds that the Dow Jones industrial average has not suffered a third-year loss since 1939.

What accounts for the sizzling performance? Part of it has to do with the fact that the third year of an administration also tends to see the best growth in gross domestic product. Market strategists surmise that the party in power in the White House has a vested interest in stimulating the economy—and the markets—as much as it can in the year before it faces re-election.

2. Stocks surge sharply in the immediate aftermath of midterm elections.

Researchers at Leuthold discovered that stocks have risen at an annualized rate of nearly 25% (including dividends) in the period that runs from the midterm elections in November to April of the following year.

Sam Stovall, U.S. equity strategist for S&P Capital IQ, notes that “we are entering the strongest six-month period for the markets in the entire four-year presidential cycle.”

He points out that this stretch coincides with two positive forces for stocks. The first is the presidential cycle. But just as important is the normal seasonal tailwind that equities enjoy from November to April, historically the best stretch for Wall Street in most years as investors emerge from the summer doldrums.

3. Washington gridlock doesn’t stall markets.

Stovall broke down election year performance even further. He went back to 1901 and examined how stocks performed in years where there’s been a split Congress—that is, the House is controlled by one party and the Senate by another, as was the case heading into this election.

He also looked at years in which a president of one party has to work with a unified Congress controlled by the opposition, which is what we’ll have starting in 2015.

In years where a president works with a split Congress, the S&P 500 has risen around 6% on average (not counting dividends), which is slightly below the long-term average of around 7% (again, not counting dividends). However, in years where a president must work with a unified Congress controlled by the opposition party, the average return for stocks is 6.2%.

It’s even better when a Democratic president must work with a Republican-led House and Republican-led Senate, like we’ll have next year. In those instances, the S&P 500 has risen 8.6% annually.

“Whether it’s gridlock or unlock,” notes Jack Ablin, chief investment officer for BMO Private Bank, “stock market history suggests the combination of a Republican-controlled Congress and a Democratic president is the most profitable politically.”

TIME 2014 Election

This Tiny Election Could Have a Big Impact on the Oil Industry

A small group of North Dakota voters will shape the future of the state's oil industry

As millions of voters across the country weigh in on issues like abortion and marijuana legalization, a new report documents how a small group of American Indian voters deep in the plains of North Dakota are determining the future of an entirely different issue—the course of the state’s oil industry.

Members of the Three Affiliated Tribes of Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara (MHA) Nation are electing a new tribal chairman, and both candidates promise new regulations that will make business tougher for the oil industry there. The tribal chairman exercises considerable influence on the state’s oil industry, which produces more oil than any state except Texas, according to Reuters. MHA controls a third of that production.

The two most pressing issues for the candidates, attorney Damon Williams and tax director Mark Fox, are protecting the environment and ensuring that oil revenue supports members of the tribes. Despite collecting hundreds of millions of dollars in oil tax revenue, the tribe still lacks some basic services. “The oil money is our buffalo,” Williams said. “And one of these days, the buffalo will move on.”

Read the full story from Reuters.

TIME Companies

Google Teaches You How to Vote This Election Day

Just search "where do I vote?"

Voting in this year’s midterm elections is a no-brainer, thanks to new search tools from Google that direct users to polling stations, look up their local candidates and do everything short of pulling the lever on Tuesday.

Google has already garnered a lot of attention from its new search field, linked through its homepage, that answers the question, “Where do I vote,” with a specially designed search that spits back the location of the nearest polling station.


But that was only one among several questions that tend to crop up around Election Day, and Google tweaked its search engine accordingly. Google “How do I vote,” “what identification do I need to vote” and “who is on my ballot” and the search results display state-specific answers, “to make it easier for citizens to access information to make a well-informed decision and cast their ballots on Election Day,” Google wrote on the company’s official blog.

Google, which has offered similar Election Day services in the past, also offered this look at the top midterm-related searches in the past week:

midterm elections

TIME 2014 Election

How to Watch the 2014 Elections, Hour by Hour

GOP Senate Candidate Jodi Ernst Casts Her Vote In Her Iowa Hometown
Voters get an 'I VOTED TODAY' sticker after casting their ballots on election day at the Red Oak Fire Department on Nov. 4, 2014 in Red Oak, Iowa. Chip Somodevilla—Getty Images

An expert’s guide on where to look for bellwethers and hints as the returns come in

Political junkies will be obsessively hitting refresh on their browsers Tuesday evening, searching for results as polls begin to close starting at 7 p.m. Eastern Time. If you are one of those people eager for returns and you don’t want to wait for the Associated Press to call states for one candidate or another, here’s a guide on what six election experts said to look for in the early returns.

The fate of the Senate hangs in the balance, so those 12 close races will be the most closely watched. Republicans need six seats to take back the majority, assuming that they do not lose any of their own.

The first races to watch will be in New Hampshire, which is a small state and counts votes fairly quickly. For a glimpse of which way New Hampshire is trending, check out the returns from Hillsborough County. A quarter of the state lives there and it includes Manchester and Nashua, two of the largest towns in the Granite State. Nashua, in particular, is a political black hole of independent voters and a mix of both parties. There’s a reason why Hillary Clinton campaigned there with incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen on Sunday. Whichever way Hillsborough is going is the way New Hampshire is going—and maybe the country.

A word of caution for the impatient: even if the trend is a GOP wave, it’s unlikely that the fate of the Senate will be known until 1 a.m. Wednesday when Alaska polls close. And given its geographic challenges, Alaska is notoriously slow in counting votes. The fate of the Senate is more likely to be known later Wednesday morning.

But it’s entirely possible that the Senate races in Louisiana and Georgia will go to runoffs, which will be triggered if no candidate wins 50% of the vote. Those are due to be held Dec. 6 and Jan. 6 respectively. So it is conceivable that the fate of the Senate may not be known until after the new year!

7 p.m. ET polls close in Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, South Carolina, Virginia and Vermont

Georgia has a close Senate race between Democrat Michelle Nunn and Republican David Perdue, who are both looking to fill retiring Republican Saxby Chambliss’s seat. It also has a close governor’s race between incumbent Republican Nathan Deal and Democrat Jason Carter, President Jimmy Carter’s grandson. Both races could go to run offs. But for early indications on which way things are going look at turnout in Atlanta. If Democrats are going to the polls in greater than expected numbers, it could be a good night for Nunn and Carter.

Kentucky is home to the most expensive Senate race in the country between incumbent Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell and his Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes, Kentucky’s secretary of state. As in Georgia, look for heavy urban turnout for a Grimes win. Light turnout favors McConnell.

Virginia isn’t a close race. Incumbent Democrat Sen. Mark Warner is expected handily beat GOP challenger Ed Gillespie, but for indications of an early wave look at Prince William’s County returns. Prince Williams is an exurb of Washington, D.C., and swings Virginia. If it’s going heavily Republican, that bodes badly for Dems nationally.

7:30 p.m. ET polls close in North Carolina, Ohio and West Virginia

Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito is likely beat Democrat Natalie Tennant to fill retiring Democrat Sen. Jay Rockefeller’s West Virginia seat, but look for the results of West Virginia’s 3rd Congressional District. Democratic Rep. Nick Rahall has fended off GOP challenges for decades. If Republicans decisively oust him, that’s an indicator of a wave.

8 p.m. ET Polls close in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Tennessee

There are close gubernatorial races in Connecticut, Florida, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. For a sense of which way the tide is flowing look to Massachusetts and Rhode Island. If Democrats Martha Coakley and Gina Raimondo are losing in these blue states, Republicans are in for a good night.

In Florida, look at the 2nd Congressional District’s returns. If incumbent Republican Rep. Steve Southerland is beating off a strong challenge from Democrat Gwen Graham, then Republicans are doing better than expected, which would also bode well for Gov. Rick Scott, who is in a toss-up race with former Gov. Charlie Crist.

As I mentioned before, New Hampshire is a great bellwether state. Its 1st Congressional District flips almost every cycle. If Democrat Rep. Carol Shea-Porter is managing to fend off a strong challenge by former Manchester Mayor Frank Guinta (for the third time in a row!), then Dems are having a really good night. On the other hand, if Democratic Rep. Annie Kuster in New Hampshire’s 2nd Congressional District is losing to Republican Marilinda Garcia, Democrats are having a terrible night. Both will be early indicators for how Shaheen is faring against Republican Scott Brown in the Senate race.

8:30 p.m. ET polls close in Arkansas

Former President Bill Clinton is looking to keep Arkansas blue—or at least a purplish tone. He has an uphill battle. But if Democrat Patrick Henry Hayes is beating GOP businessman French Hill in Arkansas’s 2nd Congressional District, then it could be a better than expected night for the Democrats running for governor, Senate and in the other close House race in Arkansas’s fourth district.

9 p.m. ET polls close in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and Wyoming

In New York’s 1st Congressional District, if Republicans finally succeed in knocking off Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop after a decade and millions of dollars worth of attempts, then you know it’s a good year for the GOP.

Conversely, if Republican Rep. Terry Lee is losing his Republican-leaning seat in Nebraska’s 3rd Congressional District in a Republican-leaning year, that’s a bad night for the GOP.

10 p.m. ET polls close in Iowa, Montana, Nevada and Utah

The Senate race in Iowa to fill retiring Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin’s seat is a nail biter. Democrat Bruce Braley is taking on Republican Joni Ernst. There are two close House races in Iowa that could be bellwethers. Democrat Staci Appel is running against David Young, a former GOP Senate staffer, in Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District. And Marionette Miller-Meeks is trying for a third time to oust Democratic Rep. Dave Loebsack in Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District. The fate of Appel and Miller-Meeks will give clues about which way Iowa is going.

11 p.m. ET polls close in California, Idaho, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington

Hawaii has a tight gubernatorial race after incumbent Democrat Neil Abercrombie lost his primary to State Sen. David Ige. Ige is facing a strong GOP challenge from former Lt. Gov. Duke Aiona. If Obama’s childhood home goes red, well that tells you something.

1 a.m. ET polls close in Alaska

If you’re still awake, Alaska has close gubernatorial and Senate races. Heavy turnout in Anchorage would favor incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Begich and independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker. Low turnout would favor GOP Senate challenger Dan Sullivan and incumbent GOP Gov. Sean Parnell.

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