How can I vote early in Illinois?
USA election 2020 now: The US polling stations will close at these times
Berlin The USA spans six time zones, so polling stations in the eastern states close hours earlier than on the west coast. Then it is night in Germany.
When do polling stations close in the 2020 US election? - an overview:
US polling stations on the east coast
For the states on the US east coast, the time difference between Eastern Standard Time (EST) and Central European Time (CET) is six hours. When the first polling stations close in large parts of Kentucky and Indiana on the evening of November 3rd, it will be midnight in Germany. In Florida, as in many other states on the east coast, voters can vote until 1 a.m. CET.
In North Carolina and Ohio, ballot boxes are sealed at 1:30 a.m. CET. In other states, such as Pennsylvania and Michigan as well as in the capital Washington D.C., voters can vote until 2 a.m. CET. The polling stations in New York do not close until three o'clock CET. Traditionally, the village of Dixville Notch, New Hampshire, is the first to announce the results of its handful of voters.
US polling stations in the center and on the west coast
In the states in the center of the USA (Central Time), the polling stations close between two o'clock CET (for example in large parts of Texas and Kansas, in Oklahoma, Missouri and Illinois) and four o'clock CET (Iowa). In the US states of Minnesota and Wisconsin, voters can cast their votes until 3:00 a.m. CET.
The state belt, which lies in a time zone with Mountain Time (MT), also completes its elections during this period. These include the states of Arizona, Colorado and Utah.
The largest state on the west coast that is in the Pacific Time (PT) time zone is California. When the polling stations there close at 8 p.m. local time, it is already 5 a.m. CET in Germany. In the neighboring state of Nevada, the election is over an hour earlier, at four a.m.CET.
There is little going on in Oregon and Washington on election day. Most of the voters here have already voted by postal vote.
Finally, the US polling stations in Alaska will close
Hawaii and Alaska bottom the long line of states. The islanders can cast their votes until 6 a.m. CET in the morning. In large parts of Alaska, too, the polling stations are open until 6 a.m. CET. On the Aleutian Islands, the chain of islands between North America and Asia, voters can cast their votes for an hour longer, until seven o'clock. When these close in the northernmost state, the US election is over.
In principle, postal voters could vote long before the November 3rd election. Most states also offer the option of voting in polling stations in advance. In Minnesota, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, Wyoming and Illinois, for example, it was possible to vote in September.
How are the election results of the states published?
In the USA there is no electoral authority that can promptly announce the results for the entire country. Results will gradually be published locally - i.e. in polling stations, districts and states.
The large US media therefore play an important role in collating local results and in some cases combining them with other data in order to predict who has won an election.
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