Thank you for participating in our live-blog here and on Twitter. We really do have the best readers in the world. President Obama won, y’all!
UPDATE 11:15 P.M. EST
UPDATE 10:45 P.M. EST
The #LezVote Twitter party is still going strong!
UPDATE 10:00 P.M. EST
Great, great, great lady-news, everybody! Most networks are now calling it for Tammy Baldwin in Wisconsin, which means she will be the first openly gay senator ever! And also, most networks are calling it for Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts, which means go away forever, Scott Brown! Additionally, Claire McCaskill is pretty much cruising to victory of Todd “Legitimate Rape” Akin in Missouri. It’s like a feminist trifecta! (Can you imagine how good Tammy Baldwin’s “It Gets Better” video is going to be?)
Also, the electoral college vote is shaking out really well for President Obama. He’s the projected winner of Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. My sister’s analysis: “MSNBC looks like they are on speed. Fox news looks like someone told them they can’t be white anymore.”
UPDATE 9:30 P.M. EST
Remember those four same-sex marriage initiatives that were on the ballots in Maryland, Minnesota, Maine, and Washington today? We don’t have any official word on them yet, but each of those states has a way for you to track their election results online. Here are a couple of links for your refresh, refresh, refresh-ing pleasure:
Maryland’s Question 6 (We’re want voters who are “for the referred law.”)
Washington’s Referendum Measure No. 74 (We want votes to approve the referendum.)
Maine’s Referendum Question #1 (We want a vote of yes.)
Minnesota’s Constitutional Amendment #1 (We want a vote of no.)
I’ll update you as soon as we know anything for sure from any of these states.
UPDATE 9:00 EST
I’m watching Fox News so you don’t have to. Bill O’Reilly’s got an idea about why Mitt Romney might lose this election and here it is: “People want … stuff.” OK? Gays, women, Latinos, blacks, all those guys want … stuff. (Like marriage equality and equal pay and not to be be racially profiled for walking down the damn street. That kind of … stuff.) He also says, “The white establishment is the minority.” Privilege isn’t as privileged as it used to be, am I right?
Meanwhile on CNN:
MSNBC’s sound design people are going to get punched in the nuts by lesbians everywhere if they don’t stop with that background noise that features a clanging bell every three seconds. Don’t they know we watch MSNBC to be relaxed by the calmness of Rachel Maddow’s voice and the cleverness of Rachel Maddow’s mouth and the wits of Rachel Maddow’s brain and also the way her collarbone peeks out from — wait, what was I saying? Oh, right. That bell is the worst. Turn it off, guys.
For real, though, how great is it that Maddow has become the most respected pundit on the entire network, so much so that she takes center stage on election night, surrounded by a bunch of dudes who defer to her for everything. Hold us, Maddow!
Some of my favorite #LezVotes tweets so far tonight:
UPDATE 7:30 P.M. EST
All right, y’all, shit’s about to get real. Ohio’s polls have officially closed. (Well, unless you’re still waiting in line to vote, in which case, they have to let you vote, so don’t get out of line!) West Virgina, a state where a convicted felon from Texas won over 40 percent of the Democratic Primary vote earlier this year, has been called for Romney. And so has Kentucky. CNN is calling Vermont for Obama. Florida is in a 51/48 Obama/Romney split with 23 percent of precincts reporting. I’m about to crack open my second Founding Fathers Lager and stare at this GIF for ten more minutes and do some deep breathing exercises. Join me?
UPDATE 4:30 P.M. EST
This will be the last update I do before the polls start closing on the east coast and CNN starts whatever tomfoolery they’re getting up to atop the Empire State Building tonight. Here’s a quick round-up of some of the most viral voting stuffs hitting up the internet right now: BuzzFeed has posted a very moving gallery of 30 people explaining why they’re voting for marriage equality in Maryland today. Ever wonder how astronauts vote from space? KQED Science has the answer! An elderly guy in Michigan literally died and came back to life in the polling place and his first post-resurrection question was, “Did I vote?” Chicago boasted a super voter too, a woman went into labor but stopped by her polling place on the way to the hospital to cast her ballot. Big Bird showed up to vote today after Mitt Romney threatened to fire him in the second presidential debate. And Gandalf came out to support of gay folks in Minnesota.
And finally, Ellen posted a photo of her gorgeous self and her “I voted” sticker to her show’s official Tumblr, and encouraged her audience to get out and do democracy right.
Keep your vaginas on, lesbos; it’s gonna be a ca-razy night!
UPDATE: 2:15 P.M. EST
Now that the common Los Angeles rabble has joined the waking world, Twitter has exploded with regular folks like me and you rocking the vote.
Oh, and here is Bey with her ballot. Check before you follow in Beyonce’s footsteps (on this one thing). It might be illegal to Instagram your ballot in your state.
Did I miss any good tweets?
UPDATE 12:15 p.m. EST
AfterEllen reader Rusty let us know about another possible LGBT victory in today’s election. In Riverside, CA, openly gay teacher Mark Takano is running for Congress in the 41st district. If elected, he will be the first openly gay person of color to serve in Congress. The Advocate posted a really great interview/profile piece with Takano, noting that he also ran for Congress in the ’90s and found that his sexuality was the central focus of the campaign. This time around, his opponent didn’t mail out pink flyers or slander his masculinity or question whether or not a gay guy was really cut out to be a representative in the federal government. It 2012, it has been all about the issues.
Obviously, it will be several hours before we start seeing any real results in any of today’s elections, so here’s what’s happening around the internet while we wait: Gawker wants to know if you notice any voting irregularities while you’re at the polls today. BuzzFeed has assembled a collection of GIFs that sum up the way women were treated during the 2012 election. The New York Times interactive road to the White House map will drive you insane/eat up the rest of your afternoon/wow you beyond measure. ReadWrite lets you to know where you can watch election coverage online tonight. The Guardian is publishing a graphic novel of the 2012 election as it happens. The Atlantic Wire points out that Ohio voters each have a one-in-a-million chance of determining the outcome of the entire presidential race. And Nate Silver stopped by The Colbert Report last night to defend his prediction that President Obama has a 90+ percent chance of winning today’s election. He also said he would rather vote for Ebola than for political pundits.
Also, in case you missed it, Ellen weighed in on the election on yesterday’s show:
Four score and seven years ago, Mitt Romney started campaigning for president and Barack Obama started re-campaigning for president and more old white dudes than you ever imagined started talking about your vagina. And now election day is finally upon us. Obviously, there’s a lot at stake today. One one side, we’ve got a president who overturned “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” stopped defending DOMA in federal court, spoke out in support of same-sex marriage, and, just this week, wrote a heartfelt letter to a ten-year-old girl who wanted some advice about how to deal with people who bully her about her gay dads. And, on the other side, we’ve got Mitt Romney, who, among other bigoted things, favors a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
But that’s not all! Four states — Maine, Maryland, Washington, and Minnesota — feature same-sex marriage initiatives on their ballots today. This is the first time Maine has put marriage equality to a vote, and as of yesterday, gay folks had a 13 percentage point lead in the polls. In Washington and Maryland, state legislatures already passed laws to make same-sex marriage legal, but detractors gathered enough signatures to put the laws to a popular vote. It’s the same thing that happened with Prop. 8 in California back in the 2008 election, only this time, LGBT rights groups have been on high alert, raising funds and organizing voters and garnering the vocal support of celebrities like Brad Pitt and Lady Gaga. In Minnesota, it’s a different kind of equality story. Even though gay people aren’t allowed to get married in the state, lawmakers want to revise their constitution to contain aggressive language banning same-sex marriage.
And, finally, in Wisconsin — Wisconsin of all places! — Tammy Baldwin is thiiiiiiis close to being the very first openly gay person to ever be elected to the Senate. Baldwin is in a neck-and-neck race with Republican Tommy Thompson, but in recent weeks, poll momentum has been in her favor. If you really want to get inspired/tear up/fall apart because you haven’t slept in ten days because of election day anxiety, check out Baldwin’s recent interview with The Guardian, in which she talks about wanting to inspire LGBT youth to run for office the way Geraldine Ferraro inspired her to run for office.
Photo credit: Alex Wong/Getty
Also, how true and awesome is this other thing she said:
Because today’s elections mean so much to the gay community, we’re going to be live-blogging them right here at AfterEllen.com. We will be updating this post throughout the day with breaking news, commentary, videos, photos, and tweets from your favorite lesbian and lesbian-adjacent pundits. But mostly, we want to talk with you. Hit us up in the comments or on Twitter (@afterellen). Tag your tweets with the hashtag #LezVote and maybe we can engage in a conversation that will keep us sane today while we wait.