It's the day before Election Day

By Melissa Macaya, Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 11:09 PM ET, Mon November 2, 2020
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10:01 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

McEnany brushes off reports about Trump being prepared to declare victory on Election Night

From CNN's Ali Main and Jason Hoffman

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany speaks with reporters at the White House in Washington, DC, on October 23.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany speaks with reporters at the White House in Washington, DC, on October 23. Alex Edelman/AFP/Getty Images

Appearing again on Fox in her personal capacity as a Trump campaign adviser from Miami-Dade County on Monday morning, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany brushed off reports that President Trump is prepared to declare victory on Election Night if he is close to 270 electoral votes, even if large numbers of ballots have yet to be counted.

Asked if there has been talk about this, McEnany responded, "No. What that is is that is the Joe Biden crowd knowing that they are on the brink of defeat, making things up and peddling it in the press. This President is prepared to win resoundingly."

However a senior Trump campaign adviser told CNN's Jim Acosta Sunday, that the Trump campaign plans to be very aggressive on Election Night and is prepared to declare victory if the President is close to the 270 electoral votes needed to win reelection.

Pressed further on the campaign's strategy on handling the period of time when key states like Pennsylvania will continue to count ballots after Nov. 3, she said, "we believe that Americans deserve to know the victor of the election on Election Night," falsely claiming that this process would be "subject to fraud."

Per a CNN fact check, there is no requirement that the result of the election be announced on the night of Election Day and states. When we do know the winner that night, it is not because complete results have been tabulated by election authorities; it is because media outlets have used the available data to make a projection.

Vote tallies always change after Election Day as absentee ballots and provisional ballots get counted; results that are publicly reported on election night are always "unofficial" and "preliminary." The official, final count is typically certified weeks later.

McEnany also confirmed that the President would spend Election Night at the White House. Asked whether she and the President would be together celebrating if he wins, McEnany responded, "Yes. We'll be there at the White House in DC."

 How networks would handle Trump declaring victory prematurely:

9:41 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Nearly 9 million Floridians have voted during early voting

From CNN's Curt Devine

Voters line-up to cast their ballots during early voting at the Alafaya Branch Library in Orlando, Florida, on October 30.
Voters line-up to cast their ballots during early voting at the Alafaya Branch Library in Orlando, Florida, on October 30. Ricardo Arduengo/AFP/Getty Images

Nearly 9 million Floridians — 8,974,896 — voted during the state’s early voting period, state data updated Monday morning show.

That’s about 94% of the total votes in the 2016 election, when about 9.6 million people voted in Florida. This also means that during Florida’s early voting period, about 62% of the state's registered voters, about 14.4 million, have already cast their votes through mail-in ballots and in-person voting.

Registered Democrats now lead registered Republicans by about 108,000 votes.

This is up by about 13,000 since Sunday morning, which shows that for at least one day Democrats held off gains that Republicans have consistently made over the last two weeks through early in-person voting.

About 1.9 million people with no party affiliation have also voted already in Florida.

9:45 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Take President Trump's popularity in Pennsylvania seriously, lieutenant governor says

From CNN's Aditi Sangal


President Trump enjoys an "inherent level of popularity" in various parts of Pennsylvania, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman said, adding that it may not be fully captured in polls but "you have to take that seriously."

With a retweet of a Trump rally Sunday, the Pennsylvania state official urged voters to get their ballots in, saying the President is popular in the state regardless of what the polls say.

“The President has undertaken an unprecedented engagement of small county Pennsylvanians through a level of barn storming that I can't recall another candidate has done before,” he told CNN. “There's a lot that I don't think can be captured fully in polling.”

"It's a message to my fellow Democrats," he added Monday. "You shouldn't be sitting on your mail-in ballots at all. There's no reason to. You don't use the mail, at this point it's too close to the deadline. You need to deliver it to a secure dropbox and make sure you bank your vote.”

Fetterman also emphasized that voters must drop off their ballots or vote in person Tuesday instead of mailing it.

“You just are risking having your vote potentially be nullified if you don't bank your mail-in ballot today.”


9:56 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Federal authorities to put back "non scalable" fence around White House today

From CNN's Kevin Bohn and Paul LeBlanc

 The sun rises over the White House on November 1 in Washington, DC.
The sun rises over the White House on November 1 in Washington, DC. Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Beginning today, federal authorities are expected to put back into place a “non scalable” fence around the entire perimeter of the White House, the same type of fencing that was put up during the protests this past summer, a source with knowledge of the matter confirmed to CNN.

The fence, as it did this summer, will also encompass the Ellipse and Lafayette Square. The fence will go down 15th St. to Constitution Ave. and then over to 17th and then up to H St., across H by Lafayette and then come down 15th St, according to the source.

This move comes as law enforcement and other agencies are preparing for possible protests surrounding the election.

Washington, DC, Police Chief Peter Newsham warned the District’s City Council last month there was wide expectation of some type of civil unrest following the election.

A pedestrian passes work being done to board up a Pret A Manger restaurant along K Street on October 30.
A pedestrian passes work being done to board up a Pret A Manger restaurant along K Street on October 30. Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Many businesses in the downtown DC area in the proximity of the White House have boarded up doors and windows in the last couple of days in anticipation of possible protests.

During this past summer some businesses saw their windows smashed and other property damage by protesters.

NBC first reported the new fencing. The Secret Service did not respond to a request for comment.

Read more here.


9:09 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Here's how to stay safe while voting in person

From CNN's Sandee LaMotte

Voting in person is a cherished right for many Americans — and for people concerned that their ballot might be lost in the mail, delivering their mail-in or absentee ballot may be their preferred option this year.

Standing in long lines at the polling center with people who may or may not be wearing masks, often inside buildings without good ventilation, certainly raises your risk of catching Covid-19.

But there are things you can do to reduce risk if you vote in person:

  • Check your polling station: What's the level of protection that will be in place at your assigned polling station? You should know in advance, for example: If you'll be spending the majority of your wait standing outside or if masks are required of both voters and poll workers. You also want to vote at a location that has a separate point of entry and exit to minimize crowds forming in the space. Any time spent indoors should be minimized. The safest locations will be school gymnasiums, community recreation centers, convention centers and large parking lots, according to the Brennan Center and the Infectious Diseases Society of America guidelines.
  • Vote at less busy times of the day: Even though people are still working from home, most people are likely to vote before or after work or at lunch time. If you can aim for mid-morning or early to mid-afternoon, you may encounter fewer lines. You may also encounter fewer people if you vote early in the window of opportunity your state provides for early voting. Stay in touch with local friends on Facebook or a neighborhood site like Nextdoor. People will often post updates about crowds at different times of the day, which can be used to plan your trip.
  • Carefully choose your mask: Be picky about your mask. Studies have shown that cotton masks with two or three layers of fabric are more protective than single-ply masks or bandanas. In fact, a recent study found bandanas and gaiter masks to be least effective in protection.
  • Vote alone: Unless you have a disability that requires assistance, vote alone, experts say. This is not the year to bring your children or other non-voting family members to the voting location.
  • Come prepared: Along with that highly protective mask, you should bring tissues and hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol or disinfecting wipes, the CDC says.

Read more here.

9:59 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Here's how Michigan counts absentee ballots and Election Day votes

CNN's Aditi Sangal


About 2.7 million voters in Michigan have already returned their absentee ballots. That's more than half the total votes cast in 2016. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson explains what voters need to know about the counting process.

Tomorrow at 7 a.m. local time, the number of absentee ballots received will be announced. At that point, all jurisdictions across the state will begin processing and tabulating those ballots.

“It's going to take time to methodically and securely tabulate every vote,” she cautioned. “Our goal is making sure that the official full tabulation, when it's announced, is accurate.”

If a Michigan voter still has their absentee ballot, they can drop it off today at their city or township's clerkship office or the local dropbox in their community, she told CNN. You can find these locations specified at

It’s important to note that at this point: it’s too late to mail your ballot. You can track the status of your ballot at or go to your county or clerkship office today and ask for information. If your ballot has been received, the clerk will confirm that. But if it has not been received, the clerk will confirm that and give the voter a new ballot and spoil whatever one was sent.

If the ballot arrives after polls close, it will not count.

“Every ballot must be received by 8:00 p.m. tomorrow," Benson explained, adding that if your ballot has not been received "you have the option to go vote in person. And when you do, the poll worker will call the clerk, either spoil your original ballot or confirm it hasn't been received, and you can vote right there."

Besides this process for absentee ballots, in-person votes on Election Day will be counted throughout the day and Benson says there will be a more specific update after polls close, Benson added.

Watch more:

8:54 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Why the Trump-Biden race could come down to Arizona and Pennsylvania

Analysis from CNN's Harry Enten

President Trump is trying to stop former Vice President Joe Biden's pathway to 270 electoral votes. The polls released over the weekend suggest that this will be difficult, but not an impossible task.

Trump's best path to stop Biden is for there to be a larger than average polling error in Arizona and especially Pennsylvania.

The electoral math is pretty simple. Biden needs to find 38 electoral votes on top of the 232 in the contests that Hillary Clinton won in 2016. He's likely to win the one from Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District. Remember, the state of Nebraska allocates an electoral vote to the winner of each of its congressional districts.

On top of that, Biden holds clear and significant leads in two states Trump won by less than a point in 2016: Michigan and Wisconsin. A CNN/SSRS poll on Saturday put Biden up 12 points in Michigan among likely voters, while Biden led in Wisconsin by 8 points in a CNN/SSRS poll and 11 points in a New York Times/Siena College poll released Sunday.

Those two states are worth a combined 26 electoral votes. Add in Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District, you get Biden to 259 electoral votes.

This means Biden needs to get 11 more electoral votes. Other polls released on Saturday and Sunday from individual states worth at least 11 electoral votes suggest he will have options to choose from.

The hardest lift is probably in Florida. A New York Times/Siena College poll has Biden and Trump separated by 3 points, while an ABC News/Washington Post poll has the race within 2 points. Although the nominal leader in both was different, the polls combined indicate what has become clear for weeks. Florida and its 29 electoral votes are too close to call with perhaps a slight edge to Biden.

Biden could also get to 270 electoral votes with North Carolina and its 15 electoral votes. A CNN/SSRS poll had Biden up by 6 points there yesterday, while the polling average puts the race closer to a 3 point edge. This is a race that Biden is favored to win, though one where an average sized polling error (about 3 points in competitive presidential races dating back to 1972) would be enough for Trump to emerge victorious.

If Trump is able to take both Florida and North Carolina (along with Georgia which has similar polling to Florida), then you can begin to see how Trump could pull it off.

He would need to win in Arizona and Pennsylvania. Is that possible? Yes. Will it be easy? No.

Read the full analysis here.


10:00 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Trump hosted 5 rallies yesterday, and he has 5 more today

From CNN's Kevin Liptak

In the final days before the election, President Trump's schedule has been packed with rallies. He held five yesterday — in Washington, Michigan; Dubuque, Iowa; Hickory, North Carolina; Rome, Georgia; and Miami.

And there are five on his schedule today: In Fayetteville, North Carolina; Scranton, Pennsylvania; Traverse City, Michigan; Kenosha, Wisconsin; and Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Many of these events have featured familiar choreography: As Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the USA" begins blasting from speakers beneath Air Force One, Trump emerges at the top of the steps and slowly descends. He makes his way to stage as the song culminates, delivers what has become a mostly surprise-free but riddled-with-falsehoods speech, ends by declaring he will still "make America great again," and departs to the thumping gay pride anthem "YMCA."

While his younger aides buoyantly form the letters with their arms during the song's refrain, Trump performs his own moves: hands clenched into fists, elbows akimbo, the rhythm his own. 

Differences between the rallies can be hard to discern. Sometimes he adds a new insult of his rivals; this weekend's addition was claiming his Democratic rival Joe Biden's signature aviator sunglasses were too small for his face and that his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris, has been mispronouncing her own name. 

Regional distinctions hardly matter; Trump delves into Minnesota's politics in Michigan and Pennsylvania's politics in Iowa. Often it is the weather that provides the clue; even in mild cold Trump prefers to wear a long black overcoat and black leather gloves.

You can read more about Trump's rally routine here

8:41 a.m. ET, November 2, 2020

Tomorrow is Election Day. Here are the key things to know.

From CNN's Zachary B. Wolf

First, have you voted? If not, make your plan and go vote now. Many states allow same-day registration. For rules in your state, check CNN's voter guide here.

Here are key things to know for tomorrow:

How long will Election night last?: Who knows! CNN won't project a winner of a state until polls in that state close (and maybe much later if things are tight).

When do polls close?: Polls close at various times starting at 7 p.m. ET on the East Coast. The last polls will close at 1 a.m. ET in Alaska.

When do the polls close in key battleground states?

  • 7 p.m. ET — Georgia, which is interesting at the presidential and Senate levels. Kentucky and South Carolina have key Senate races.
  • 7:30 p.m. ET — North Carolina and Ohio. There's a tight Senate race in North Carolina.
  • 8:00 p.m. ET — Florida and Pennsylvania. Maine has a key Senate race.
  • 9:00 p.m. ET — Arizona, Michigan, Minnesota, Texas and Wisconsin. There are also key Senate races in Arizona, Michigan, Colorado and Texas.
  • 10:00 p.m. ET — Iowa and Nevada.

When will we know the winner? This is an impossible question to answer, because we don't know how all the early voting will affect different states' ability to report results quickly.

Many, many more millions of Americans have voted early in person or by mail this year than usual because of the pandemic, so it could take more time to count those ballots, particularly in a few key battleground states (ahem, Pennsylvania).

What do we know about how the vote will come in on election night?

We have some educated guesses.

  • We might know some states early. A very large proportion of Americans are voting early and in most states, election officials can tee up those ballots to generate results quickly after polls close. So in contested states like Florida and Texas, we may have a very good idea early in the night how things will go.
  • It might take some states many days. In Pennsylvania, for instance, election officials can't do anything with early ballots until Election Day. Some counties won't even pick them up until the day after Election Day.

Read more here