Many officials are saying Americans should be ready to go to bed on Tuesday night without knowing who will be in the White House for the next 4 years, something that hasn’t happened in twenty-years.

This is due to the huge number of mail-in ballots that states may need extra time to count. New York and Kentucky have already experienced this during their primaries, where it took states weeks to count ballots. 

Executive director and founder of the nonpartisan Center for Election Innovation & Research, David Becker, emphasized that accuracy is more important than speed. He said, “We have to prepare for the very strong probability that an election unlike any other we’ve ever had might take a little longer to accurately count with integrity.” 

Some delays will also be caused by states where the law allows ballots to be mailed-in after the election if they are postmarked by a certain deadline.

Battleground states Pennsylvania and North Carolina, among other states, have had legal battles over whether the deadline should be extended due to the high number of mail-in ballots because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Though most states lack the infrastructure to count mail-in ballots at a fast pace, other states are more prepared, such as California and Washington, where mail-in-voting has already been popular before the pandemic.

Below is when we can expect results from each state:


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