Obama or McCain? - A poll watcher’s guide to the finish line

November 4th, 2008 - 12:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Barack ObamaWashington, Nov 4 (IANS) Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain’s final race for the magic figure of 270 electoral votes begins Tuesday with over 200 million Americans straddling nine time zones going to the polls over 19 hours.The polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. (local) in each of the 50 states and the capital city of Washington DC with a total of 538 electoral votes based on their population. Under America’s winner take all system followed by all but two states, the one who gets the most popular votes takes all its electoral votes.

The polls begin at 4:30 p.m. IST Tuesday in Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia and close 19 hours later in Alaska at 11:30 a.m. IST Wednesday.

But as voting ends in each state, major TV stations start “calling” it for one or the other candidate and the one who gathers the magic 270 wins the White House.

To help poll watchers keep track of the results here are the finish lines for various states with the number of electoral votes at stake in each group:

7:00 p.m. (5:30 a.m. IST Wed) (58 votes)
Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia

7:30 p.m. (6:00 a.m. IST Wed) (25 votes)
Ohio, West Virginia

8:00 p.m. (6:30 a.m. IST Wed) (171 votes)
Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Maryland,
Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma,
Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Washington D.C.

8:30 p.m. (7:00 a.m. IST Wed) (21 votes)
Arkansas, North Carolina

9:00 p.m. (7:30 a.m. IST Wed) (150 votes)
Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, New
York, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, Wyoming

10:00 p.m. (8:30 a.m. IST Wed) (26 votes)
Iowa, Kansas, Montana, Nevada, Utah

11:00 p.m. (9:30 a.m. IST Wed) (84 votes)
California, Hawaii, Idaho, North Dakota, Oregon, Washington

12: a.m. (10:30 a.m. IST Wed) (0 votes)
American Samoa

01:00 a.m. (11:30 a.m. IST Wed) (3 votes)
Alaska, Northern Mariana Islands, Guam

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