Election Day updates: Voters cast their ballots; no major problems reported

Nov. 8—Polling places in Maine close statewide at 8 p.m. and statewide and local results will updated live at SunJournal.com.

Whatever the outcome of today's voting, the White House will stay bathed in bright light until 2 a.m. — largely to accommodate TV correspondents filing on-camera reports and other reporters trying to make their deadlines.

The floodlights are usually turned off around 10 p.m. every night, in part because they bleed into the executive residence where the president and first lady live.

U.S. Secret Service officers usually make a pass through the press briefing room each night, checking news organization offices to make sure all reporters have left the building so they can lock the doors to the workspace. But the rules are usually relaxed on major news nights, like midterm and presidential elections, and presidential inaugurations.

With polls open across most of the country, no big problems were reported early in the day, though there were hiccups in some places, which is typical on any Election Day. For example, vote tabulators were not working in a county in New Jersey and one in Arizona — potentially requiring hand-counting instead — and some voting sites in Pennsylvania were delayed in opening because workers showed up late.

"These are things we see in every election cycle," said Susannah Goodman, director of election security at Common Cause, a group that advocates for voting access. "There's nothing majorly concerning this morning."

President Joe Biden was not expected to make any public appearances Tuesday as voters went to the polls.

Indeed, well before the lunch hour rolled in, the White House called a "lid." It's the lingo that means the president would spend the day in the executive mansion awaiting the results of vote counting that will decide political control of Congress and, with that, how the two years left in his term will play out.

Biden's chief spokesperson, Karine Jean-Pierre, told reporters that Biden would have a full schedule Tuesday, including prepping for an upcoming trip to international summits in North Africa and Asia and watching the election results come in.

"We expect the president will address the elections the day afterwards," Jean-Pierre said.

Secretary of State Shenna Bellows started the day in Kennebunk where voting started at 6 a.m. and said she will be visiting polling places across the state throughout the day.

"Things seem really smooth," she said at the Italian Heritage Center in Portland around 9:20 a.m. "There have been no hiccups reported so far across the state. Our clerks are very well trained and very well prepared. They've been working nights and weekends to get ready for this day."

Found @PaulLePage2022 at my polling place. He's urging everyone to vote today. #mepolitics pic.twitter.com/JSm4pqQv1H

— Steve Collins (@SteveCollinsSJ) November 8, 2022

Early turnout appears brisk after polling places opened across Maine. Voters who waited for in person voting are casting ballots for on everything from the statewide governor's race to local races and spending proposals.