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tv   Election Night in America  CNN  November 6, 2018 2:00pm-3:00pm PST

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tick tock. >> the battles for governor and the trump presidency. >> get your friends, get your neighbors and get your ass out to vote. >> anything is possible until the last vote. ♪ >> look at that rainbow over the u.s. capital right now. control of the congress clearly is on the line as voters cast ballots in one of the most consequential midterm elections of their lifetimes. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer, along with jake tapper. we're here in the cnn election center and we're counting down to the first votes on this election night in america and our first exit poll results are
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coming in right now. we're just moments away from bringing these crucial, early clues about how this historic night will play out. it could be a major turning point for the trump presidency and the balance of power here in washington, as democrats battle to retake control of the house. to do that, they need to win 23 republican house seats and keep the seats they have right now. to win control of the senate, democrats must pick up two republican held seats and hold on to their existing number of seats. jake, democrats see their best chance for victory tonight in the fight for the house. >> it could all come down to fewer than 50 key races where republicans are at greatest risk of losing house seats. our team is here, covering all the important contests. john king is at the magic wall, of course, mapping out the votes district by district. with the first results minutes away. dana bash is following the 35 senate contests where democrats are facing a very tough map
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tonight. we're watching 36 governor's races. nia-malika henderson is following that. we have reporters spread out across the country, monitoring the results as they come in. let's start with manu raju on capitol hill. manu? >> democrats very confident they would take back the house tonight, a significant turning point for the trump white house. the question is, how big of a majority they may ultimately have. senior democratic officials are trying to downplay talk of a major blue wave. they do believe they could pick up seats, perhaps 30, 35 seats, which would give them a 10 to 15-seat majority. pick up the 40 and beyond would amount to a much more significant size majority at the moment. democrats do not believe it will be that big of a majority. ultimately now, that could, of course, change, depending on how those first results come in, particularly in the states of
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new jersey, florida. if they do better than expected, expect those expectations to change. right now they're feeling good about their chances and it appears they could be on the cusp of regaining control of at least the house, jake. >> manu raju on capitol hill. pamela brown, what are they thinking inside that building? >> reporter: jake, the white house is prepared to blame losses as an historical trend and also that it won't be as bad as president obama back in 2010. one person i spoke with told me there's confidence that the president did everything he could to make sure his party performs above the historical odds. another source telling my colleague, sarah westwood, is that the expectation is that it won't be a bloodbath, but that republicans will not win the house. on the senate, on the other hand, the white house is prepared to make the case that
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if republicans gain any seats, president trump deserves all the credit. missouri, indiana, north dakota, saying these states are competitive for republican candidates because of president trump's influence. north dakota was already trending republican. the president will be watching the results roll in tonight from the residence. back to you. >> pamela brown, thank you so much. let's go to david chalian right now. >> thanks, jake. thank you, jake. we've got our first exit poll results for you. and it is all about the trump factor. that is what we asked voters about. take a look at his overall approval rating here. according to vote rs today, interviews as voters left their polling stayings today and just preliminary information. he's at 45% approval, 55% disapproval. that's about where george w. bush and barack obama were s
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sitting when they faced their first midterm election and lost the house. strongly disapprove, 47% of voters say they strongly disapprove of the president's performance. the passion is on the disapproval side, jake. and then, of course, how does the president factor into your vote? 65% of them saying they are, indeed, voting with donald trump as a factor in mind. 26% of them say they're doing it to support president trump but more are doing it, 39%, to oppose president trump and only 33% said trump is not a factor in their vote at all. we also asked voters today how they feel about the way the country is voting. take a look at this, guys. the wrong track number is 56%. only 41% of americans say the country is headed in the right direction. this is an electorate displeased
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with donald trump, the direction of the country and showing the president about where his predecessors were when they lost house seats. >> it's interesting, jake, the president said this is a referendum for all practical purposes on him. if these exit poll numbers are accurate, and we assume they're pretty accurate, he's not going to be very happy. >> it's preliminary information right now. but if this holds on, this will be the first test of the so-called resistance of people who oppose president trump and their ability to get people to the polls. and if these numbers are to be believed -- again it's early. these are preliminary numbers -- this is a rebuke of president trump. when you have 55% disapproval, 56% saying it's on the wrong track, the nation is on the wrong track. 47% strongly disapprove of president trump. if these preliminary numbers hold out throughout the rest of the night, that's a strong rebuke of the president. >> it certainly is. and the fact that his job approval number, according to the exit poll, is so low. if you take a look at other
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presidents going into their first midterm, it doesn't necessarily bode well for the republicans. >> no. when obama and bush and clinton have had similar results, similar nights, it has meant a blood bath in terms of the loss of house seats. one thing president trump has going for him above and beyond anything else is the fact that the math for the senate is so difficult for democrats. they're playing defense in so many of those seats but on the house side, republicans are playing defense and these numbers, if they hold up, if they continue, show that president trump will be an albatross around the necks of many republicans. >> as you and david chalian point out, preliminary numbers. >> very preliminary. >> jake, thank you very much. obviously, there is a lot we do not know. a lot of people thought they knew what was going to happen in 2016. obviously, were surprised. who knows exactly what's going to happen tonight. stay tuned. david gergen getting an early
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preliminary look at exit polls. i don't know how much you put faith in them. what do you think? >> exit polls have notoriously shifted over the course of the evening. having said that, i was surprised how low the president's approval rating was at voters at 45%. the right track/wrong track, alternative argument to trump's conduct in office, the tone, was that america is doing well, the economy is booming zblun employment. >> all those things yet right track/wrong track, people say no, the country isn't in good shape. >> notion that the president, it shades the way people see even economic numbers or see the way the country is going. >> it's surprising that, given the economy, how well it's doing. still, so many people view this president so negatively less than two years in his term.
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he's inciting numbers about that, giving himself cover in case they do lose to house democrats. he has been saying tra deshlly, historic historically, they lose the house, whoever is in power. he has been citing that on the trail and also that he can't campaign for all these house members. he wants to make clear he doesn't want any of the blame for this if the democrats do sweep the house by tomorrow. >> david chalian has more exit polls in. >> thanks, anderson. thank you, anderson. we are now taking a look at when voters made up their mind. this is a fascinating number. two-thirds of the electorate, 65% of voters tell us they decided more than a month ago. 18% say last month but this last number here, that 65%, electorate dpiet all the news happening in recent days leading
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up to the election. we also asked voters if they were a first-time voter. again, these are early exit poll numbers. we expect them to change as more interviews are done with voters throughout the night. look at that. 16% of voters tell us as they're leaving the polls that they're a first-time voter. that number in the 2016 presidential election was 10%. this is an electorate that has a lot of first-time voters in it. wolf, jake? >> david, thank you. that's a potential significant moment. first time younger voters, not necessarily something that's happened before. >> younger voters tend to vote democratic. older voters tend to vote republican. that's a good sign for a potential blue wave. the question is, are they people who have not been motivated to vote, president trump or anti-president trump motivated them to do that? 16% first-time voters is a big
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number. president trump got a lot of first-time voters out in 2016. if these numbers hold up, it would be even more. >> john king at the magic wall. we're about 15 minutes away from the first actual results. these have been exit polls. we're about to get results. >> early indication, are the democrats reporting in republican held states? cnn is looking at 97 of these key races and tell us what's happening. as a subset of those key races, one of them is right here. polls close in kentucky. the 6th district, amy mcgrath, democratic challenger. andy barr, incumbent. let me go back in time and show you in this district. he carried this victim by 15 points. this is not one of the 20-plus districts we'll look at tonight that hillary clinton carried for
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president. this is trump country. there is no reason that the republicans should not win this race unless we have a big democratic year. amy mcgrath, retired from the military. fighter pilot. one of the first races we'll see. watch the results come in. number one, is it close? number two, the republicans winning by how much? number three if the democrat is ahead in this district, an early indication. and at the 7:00 hour, this will fill in with results in georgia. two races that we say are leaning republican, but we have to watch these. karen handles won the special election. health and human service secretary tom price, his district right here. georgia 6. this race in georgia 7. these should be republican districts. big governor's race down there. suburban turnout we'll see down there. targets of opportunity for the democrats. watch the results, see if they're turning out a surprise performance. virginia, also in the 7:00 hour,
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a key early test. four electrics we're watching closely. this one, democrats are favored. republican barbara bra comst co the incumbent. democrats need this one on their path to 23, this is a must. the question, are they winning it? then what are the margins? the more rural areas, is jennifer wexton competitive? if she is, we'll look down here. couple of other targets for the democrats. if they're winning here in the 7th district, and they think they're on the path to not only 23 but something higher than that. why? richmond suburbs. we'll be talking about the suburbs a lot tonight. college educated white women, they don't like donald trump. will they take it out on republican incumbents? that's the biggest question tonight. richmond suburbs here should be stronghold for the democrats. you move up here. this is tea party. trump country, should be good.
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brat, very competitive district her here. >> early key races on the house side. we're about to get a preview of the 11 key races on the senate side and another window in what voters are thinking about the issues they care about most. we'll have more results from our exit polls after this. ♪ let's fly, let's fly away ♪ ♪ just say the words ♪ and we'll beat the birds down to acapulco bay ♪ ♪ it's perfect for a flying honeymoon they say ♪ ♪ come fly with me ♪ let's fly, let's fly away ♪ ♪ come fly with me ♪ let's fly, let's fly away ♪
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at stake tonight, who will control the u.s. house of representatives, who will control the senate? which party will be in the majority in enormous, enormous implications in all of this. we're standing by at 42 minutes, we'll be getting the first poll closings, first results will be coming in. we're watching the senate very closely, but no one is watching it as closely as dana right now. >> 35 senate seats are on the line to be precise. it will come down to likely 11 key races. republicans are, of course, in charge of the senate right now. democrats need to hold on to seats in these seven battleground states, florida, indiana, missouri, montana, new jersey, north dakota and west virginia. and democrats need to flip at least two of the senate seats republicans are defending
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tonight in arizona, nevada, tennessee and texas. now two is the magic number for democrats. that's the one we'll be following all night long. if they can pick up two gop seats and not lose any of their own, they could take back the senate. now, two doesn't seem like a big number but it is a huge challenge. first, because democrats are defend i defending. indiana, democratic senator joe donnelly is in a tough fight again. an early indicator whether it will be a good night for democrats or not so much. wolf and jake? >> thank you, dana. they believe it's doable.
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>> they have narrowed, many of them to the democrats advantage. there are two that they can pick up that seem certainly possible and especially nav adda. one doesn't know. that's a lot of territory. democrats have the advantage in the house of 97. they have the exact opposite problem in the senate. they are playing defense. david chalian? >> more exit polls for you. we asked voters today and also have interviewed early voters in addition to talking to voters at polling stations today what their issue is. take a look at this. health care is the dominant issue, by a lot. 41%. then it's down to 23% who say
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immigration, 21% say economy. there's that whole debate if the president should have been talking up the economy or not and 11% say gun policy. here is what is going to be more welcomed news for the president and the folks in the white house. take a look at the condition of the economy. 68% of voters in this election are telling us the economy is good. only 31% is calling it poor. we then asked, well, can you compare your financial situation to two years ago? and look at this. 35% say it's better today. 14% say it's worse today and about half the electorate, 49%, say it's about the same. there's a lot of positive economic news in the electorate. the fact that health care is so dominant and that's what democrats were running on all season, that will give republicans some pause. >> democrats were making health care the most important issue. the president was making immigration, for all practical purposes, the most important. >> a lot of viewers and voters hate when people and politicians
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are on message and stick to their message, no matter what questions are thrown to them. they do it because it works and democrats have been very good about staying on message on health care, saying republican also take away your health care and don't believe in protecting people with pre-existing conditions. you look at this number, what's the most important issue? 41% saying health care, that's a good sign for democrats. they're the ones driving the health care issue home. the same exact poll in the 2010 midterms i would said that's a bad sign for democrats because the message then was that obamacare would be disastrous. another thing that strikes me about this is the idea that the condition of the economy, 68% of those in these preliminary exit polls say the condition of the economy is good. that normally would be a great number for president trump. of course, it still is a great number for president trump but contrast it with the right track/wrong track numbers. 68% of those in these
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preliminary exit polls say the economy is good but 56% say the country is on the wrong track. well, if the economy is good, what exactly are you complaining about? why do you think the country is on the wrong track? assuming these preliminary exit polls hold up, this is the conundrum of trump, people who like the way the economy is going and how it's affecting their pocketbook but don't like the way the country is going because of things he says and does. >> we're about to get the first actual results half an hour from now. senate races, house races. anderson over to you. >> jake just raised an important point, 68% saying the economy is good yet this right track/wrong track, 68% s. >> right. you don't know who is answering. you don't know exactly how that plays out. the economy being good, that's an amazing number, 68%. often times we see in polls you ask somebody, do you think the
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deficit is too high and 70% of people say the deficit is too high but it's not the issue that they're voting on. twice as many are voting on health care than are voting on immigration and immigration was the closing argument for trump and health care was the closing argument for -- >> there's also another statistic out of these same exit polls. 41% said health care is the number one issue for them. >> that's bad for republican governors, for wisconsin governor scott walker, ohio mike dewine. these are guys who have had to defend against those lawsuits that they joined, against the aca. they've been having to insist whatever happens federally, we'll take care of you and your pre-existing conditions in the states. that requires a huge leap of faith for a voter. the guy that i'm going to elect can then convince my state legislature to ensure some new
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law that's going to protect my pre-existing conditions. that's been real tough for those republican governors. if that number holds, it will be a problem for a lot of republican governors. >> this right track/wrong track number is about the rhetoric of the president of the united states and people showing up with intensity to repudiate the language that he uses. and we can't just act like these elections happen in vacuums. two black people were killed in kentucky because they were black. we have to think about the anti-semitism in pittsburgh and pipe bombs mailed to our colleagues here at cnn. all these things are baked in the cake when we're talking about an election. the other number that is very important is the number of new voters, voting in this process. 16%, 17% of that number stays around there. those are young voters, minority voters. this is not going to be your first election to come out and
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vote and support donald trump if you didn't vote for donald trump in 2016. that simply doesn't make any sense. i think that's a large group of individuals that the democratic party can count on. >> 10% of new voters in 2016. according to this exit poll, it's 16%. >> i think those are democratic votes. >> you see those numbers, what do you make of what the president has been focusing on? >> the strategic choice to go away from the economy at the end. you want to fight these on the friendliest terrain possible. democrats chose wisely on health care, people want major change in health care. they're not the party in power. they want to fight it out there. seems to have worked. if you're the party in power, where do you want to fight? 70% of americans think the economy is good. so you need to make that the key issue in the election. republican candidates at the congressional and senate level were trying but the president wanted to go a different direction at the end. friendliest terrain is to tell
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americans the economy is good, we're on the right track. i think republican intensity had already gotten there with kavanaugh. i don't think they needed immigration to do it. >> you're saying the president did not need to rile the base up? >> three weeks ago, he had the right slogan, democrats create mobs and republican create jobs. every republican i knew thought that was the best branding he had come up with. >> i get why he wanted to go there. it was the tone, the barbarians at the gate. that was not, i think, what a lot of voters wanted to hear in terms of the problems that we have with immigration. he could have used immigration to rile up the base, but he could have done it a lot more strategically, in a way that didn't offend suburban women. >> there was this ad, a new morning in america like ad released by his campaign, designed to remind people things are good. your jobs are good and other
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things. the president, i'm told, hated that ad and he switched to immigration. we could even see it at the rallies we covered. he focused the majority of his time on immigration, on everything else but the economy. >> he even said at one point the economy is boring to talk about. >> right. so the question here is -- we should say these numbers are very early. we don't know how individual races are going to play out. i do believe he did fire up his base with immigration, no question. >> right. >> but who else did he fire up? it may have been suburban other voters who are not with him. >> that's the question. yes, immigration does rile up his base. is he going to regret trying not to reach people outside his base? we saw president trump go to states he won comfortably in 2016, red states where he felt good and had a lot of strong support. after all of this is over is he going to regret not branching out to other states and expand his support to a bigger group? >> the republicans have got to hope that these numbers change
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dramatically for the rest of the evening. particularly looking for the women vote on this and how they broke. i think it's going to -- we'll reinterpret everything we see after we look at those numbers, i think. president trump made a bet in 2016 based on his instinct to play on fear and it paid off. he made a similar bet this time and it's backfiring. that's the reading out of it. he took his party up in 2016 with that victory and now he's the one taking it down. >> i don't think it's necessarily going down but what i think donald trump's republican party -- and i'm very clear that donald trump's republican party -- i think it's plateaued. his party is not expanding. his party is not including the new diverse group of voters. it's not including younger voters. do we have the ability to mobilize these voters?
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you'll see it play out in these suburban areas sooner rather than later. >> i think it might be shrinking. >> i agree. >> republicans reliably, you know, rely on suburban educated white women. and those numbers are shrinking. >> we should point out these are preliminary numbers and it's very early. it's just 5:30 on the east coast. if this story has not been written. we don't know what's going to happen throughout the night. quickly back to david chalian with more exit polls. david? >> anderson, we asked voters how they felt about the political parties in the country today. take a look at what we found. remember, these are early exit polls, interviews done with voters leaving the polls. early and absentee voters getting a sense of how they voted. take a look at this.
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the republican party is upside down by 11 points. 54% unfavorable, 43% favorable. contrast that with how voters think about the democratic party. 50% favorable. 46% unfavorable. they're right side up by four points. here is the one caveat for democrats, nancy pelosi. she has been a polarizing figure throughout this election. and probably not a great surprise but she is particularly upside down. 55% of voters have an unfavorable opinion only 41% have a favorable opinion. wolf, jake? >> thank you. this upside down number for the republicans doesn't necessarily bode well. >> no. it's horrible news for them. assuming these numbers hold up, i keep saying that, preliminary exit polls. people are still voting. 54% having an unfavorable opinion of republican party, 54% having a favorable opinion of
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the democratic party, these are people that don't like the republican party right now, the majority of them and want to vote, presumably, democratic. one caveat, as david pointed out, nancy pelosi numbers, very, very negative and shows that the republican have done a good job of making her the bad guy, the villain. it poses questions for the democratic party, assuming they do win back control of house of representatives. pelosi said she would serve as a transition figure but what exactly does that mean? and could she get 218 votes, assuming that democrats take back the house? i don't know. preliminary, but these are great numbers for democrats and bad numbers for republicans. >> absolutely right.
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everybody, stand by. coming up minutes from now, first votes of this historic election. we're also going to look at key governor's races tonight. why? they matter for the entire nation. plus more exit poll results coming in. we'll be back in a moment. here we are, wherever "here" might be. election day. when you rise above the... the noise. the tweets. the talking heads. what you hear and what you see are two different things. you hear about how "we're a nation divided." yet, from where we sit, we see no such thing. we see half a million people - today alone - stitching together some supposedly very divided states. red states. blue states. and every shade of purple in between. we see people working across party lines. state lines. yes, even airlines. all looking for for that uncommon, common ground.
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a nice reminder: that if you really want to see what this country is made of. maybe it's best to go see it for yourself.
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beautiful sun set here in
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washington, d.c. we'll see what the sunright brings tomorrow morning. we'll see if there's a change in the battle for power here in washington. jake and nia are taking a close loo look. >> 36 governor seats are up for grabs tonight. only a handful are close, high-profile contests that will test the president's influence in key battlegrounds and likely have an impact in 2020 and beyond. we'll be watching races in florida, georgia, kansas, ohio and wisconsin. these are states where republicans currently hold the governor's office and are very much on the defensive tonight. one of the hottest match-ups is in florida, where democrat andrew gillem is vowing to be the state's first african-american governor. he faces republican ron desantis who has made his endorsement by president trump very much a centerpiece of his campaign. in georgia, stacey abrams is
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vying to be the first african-american woman elected governor. her opponent is trump endorsed republican brian kemp, georgia secretary of state. this close and bitter race has been rocked by allegations of security. tony eavers, former presidential candidate and conservative favorite who beat back a recall attempt six years ago. walker, in this race, is billing himself as the underdog. in ohio, staying in the midwest, richard cordray is in a tight race with governor mike dewine. late campaign push for dewine by the president, and is expected to succeed kasich. deeply red state against a polarizing republican, kansas
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secretary of state chris kobach, strong ally of the president and headed controversial and now disbanded committee on election in integrity. we're waiting these first votes in these races that will very much shape the political landscape heading into the next election. >> lots at stake in these races. right now they're at a tremendous disadvantage among the governors, all the governors that are democrats versus republicans. >> that's right. take a look at this map. this will help illustrate why democrats are in a position to take advantage of it. it's because they start off at such a tremendous disadvantage. democrats only with 16 of the governors' offices in the country. republicans with 33. there's an independent in alaska. as nia machine malika mentioned, we'll take particular notice of the races in florida, in
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georgia, in ohio, in wisconsin and in kansas. that's where democrats feel they have some of the strongest possibilities to pick up states. and this has ramifications beyond the lives of the people in those states. although, obviously, it has tremendous implication for that, this has 2020 implications. the people who, first of all, there will possibly be people who win this evening and then decide to run for president trump against donald trump but beyond that, people who run the states of ohio and florida, people who run the states of wisconsin, florida and other states, that will be significant to how well and how confident president trump can be as he tries to pursue re-election. >> very true. let's go over to john. >> the 2016 map, as you go through the night, obviously, we are waiting for this. we're waiting for this.
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congressman desantis, trump defender on television, trump candidate in the state of florida. his congressional district down here. andrew gillum, mayor of tallahassee, hoping to be the first african-american governor of florida. florida is just one of those states, how many times we've been through this? you're talking about governor, talking about president, it is what it is, a highly competitive state. let's look. remember the presidential election? president trump carried his adopted second state, if you will, by 112,000, 113,000 votes. lot of democrats here. democrats need to do well here, here, here, here and here. right? that's 2016. you say that's just the 2016 election, donald trump versus hillary clinton. this is rick scott when he last won governor. notice anything? it's the same map. rick scott wins his first election for governor. pretty much the same map. picking up a little strength down there in the panhandle. this is the map you're looking at.
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let's go back to the presidential year. that's there. presidential election results so you can watch. for andrew gillum, run it up here. democratic base voters down here. how does he do, not only in orlando, tampa but the suburbs around him? can he, an african-american candidate, create a coalition? does he do well with college educated women in the suburbs? florida is becoming increasingly suburban. that's another big play. for ron desantis -- again this is the trump/clinton map. panhandle. this is the south, if you will, georgia and alabama up here. this is trump country. and the senate race. we're looking at the governor
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race now. we'll see what happens in this race as he tries to run statewi statewide, as you know, wolf, they're always close. always close. the question for the democrats is in this environment, can andrew gillum turn out those magic voters, if you will, get more younger voters to come out, after rrican-american voters cot at a presidential level? it's always a late night. >> we're closing in on the first votes of the night when some polling places will be closing in indiana, kentucky. we expect crucial early clues about the outcome in the battle and control for congress and how important is it to voters to elect more women and minorities? our exit poll also tell us. we'll be right back.
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so, let's talk about conference calls. there's always a certain amount of fumbling. a lot of times it doesn't work. we have problems. comcast business goes beyond fast. by letting you make and receive calls
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from any device using your business line. and conference calls you can join without any dial-ins or pins. (phone) there are currently 3 members in this conference. i like that. i like that too. i would use that in a heartbeat. get started with innovative voice solutions for a low price when you get fast, reliable internet. comcast business. beyond fast. love this beautiful shot. live pictures of capitol hill right now. we are getting ready, moments from now we will get the first action. who will control the senate and the house of representatives? the first clues coming up in 12 minutes. in the meantime, let's go back to david chalian for some more exit polls. >> thanks, wolf. as you know, people have been talking about this year potentially as another year of the woman. well, we asked voters today if
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indeed it was important to them to elect more women to other, and look at this number. 78% of voters voting today in these early preliminary exit polls tell us that it is, indeed, important to elect more women to public office. more than four in ten call it very important, wolf. we asked the same thing about electing racial minorities to public office, and take a look at that. again, more than seven in ten, 71% of voters in this electorate voting today tell us it is important to elect racial and ethnic minorities to public office. this is an electorate seeking more diversity, both gender diversity and racial diversity in their elected officials. let's go to anderson. >> david, thanks very much. again, there's a caveat. these are polls done, you know, by interviewing people and scott jennings pointed out, who is going to say no? i don't want -- you know, voting for women is not important. >> i don't think they're going to say no, but in terms of making it a priority, i think
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the democrats have made it a much higher priority. >> i just mean if you are asked by a pollster, wouldn't somebody -- >> i don't know. i feel like whenever i -- i constantly hear back from republicans that, like, i just vote for the person. i don't care about -- >> race doesn't matter? >> race or gender doesn't matter. so they would say, i vote for the best person. i don't make it a priority to vote for a woman or minority candidate. let's say it is not true, it still bodes well for the democrats because they have more women and more non-white people running. >> and that goes to something which i think is going to be one of the minor themes of the night, which is the quality of candidates that the democrats have put forth. the andrew gillums, the stacey abrams, the amy mcgraths, the m.j.hagers. you have individuals who are diverse but extremely talented. when andrew gillum was on the stage with ron desantis, there was no question who won that particular debate in that particular moment. when you are looking at quality candidates, that's why democrats have -- and our candidates have
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stepped back from the national discussion somewhat, and they fit their state and they fit their congressional district. the andy kims, they fit their congressional districts. i think it is going to bode well as democrats go through because the country is becoming more diverse and i think you will have a more diverse participation tonight, and a younger participation tonight. >> certainly democrats have been focusing on whether you believe the candidate or not, they have been focusing on health care which clearly to a lot of people is important in the exit polls. >> yes. and important to a lot of women, and women are going to be so centrally think to this election, to david's point, and a certain kind of woman, that suburban woman. i talked to very anecdotally a number of women yesterday in arizona, kansas, north carolina, ohio, michigan and massachusetts. they all leaned right. they did not like the president's rhetoric and they planned to vote republican down the ticket. if that's representative -- and i'm not saying it is, we don't
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know. we won't know until we get exit polls. if that's representative, if women can silo the president and his personality and his rhetoric from the issues that are important to them, republicans will do okay. if they can't, they're doomed. >> we are going to continue this. i want to quickly go back to david chalian because i think he is getting new exit polls. >> reporter: hey, anderson. that's right. we asked folks today, if your vote -- how you considered, how important was the recent extremist violence we have seen. look at this. 51% of voters call it an important factor, and 25% call it the most important factor. so this was clearly on people's mind, and here is also another hard truth we found about america when we asked folks today about whether or not we're more united or divided as a nation. take a look at this. politically, do you think americans are more divided or united? more than three-fourths of voters voting today tell us america politically is becoming more divided.
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only 8% say we are becoming politically more united, anderson. >> all right. david chalian. again, kirsten, i'm not sure how people would see a more united nation certainly, but it is -- >> only 7% there. >> but it is interesting the impact of, you know, extremist violence. >> yeah, definitely. i don't know how much we can really read into that, right? i mean i don't know it is necessarily -- i'm not comfortable saying that's a profile of a democrat or a republican per se. i don't know what you guys think. >> no, i think that -- i actually think that that is indicative of a lot of the issues that tie back into the president's rhetoric, and people are making that nexus and correlation, whether or not it is correct or incorrect, where people are attributing the language and demonization of, let's say, the caravan and immigrants to this country, brown and black people, and they are attributing it to a rise in the division that we see, the anti-semitism that we see and the racism. listen, i think it is going to play a role, especially with young people as they come out
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and vote today. >> so we've been at rallies with the president's supporters for the last two weeks, sometimes two or three a day, and what we've heard from his supporters is the reverse of that. they think the democrats are also contributing to the division in the country with the comments from maxi waters, from nancy pelosi, from leading figures in the democratic party. they don't see it is at all the president's rhetoric. we were there at rallies the day the pipe bombs were sent to the political targets. we were there the day after the pittsburgh shooting. we saw all of the president's supporters right around these very crucial events and they were all saying they do not believe it is the president's rhetoric that contributed to this. whether or not it will affect his voters at all is still to be determined, but certainly there's a reverse argument to that. >> they also think the media is causing division. >> there was a race to the bottom on rhetoric. i mean the president is divisive, sure. barack obama was out there a couple of days ago saying, they're robbing you blind. this is not the uplifting civil discourse a lot of people want to see.
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>> yeah. that's not the president of the united states just announced i'm a nationalist. >> he's their best. >> use that, i'm a nationalist, used that word. >> my point is this. >> it is different. >> both parties made a decision that using divisive rhetoric was to their advantage going into the final days. obama did it and trump did it. everybody was doing it. >> but plenty say chose not to. andrew gillum chose not to. beto o'rourke has chosen not to. tonally, whatever you think of their politic goes, tonally they decided to be happy warriors. that strategy is on the test that's being tested tonight as well. >> do you think it is fair to compare the tone of president trump and president obama in these final days? >> i think it is fair to compare them because they're so different, not because of their similarity. i mean president obama, yeah, some people found him divisive, but he didn't use the kind of sharp rhetoric, the below-the-belt kind of punching you have seen here. he was -- you know, he was much more
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more eloquent man who tried to go on the top of the mountain top. i think there's something fundamental going on in this election that we should bring to the surface, and that is that there were a lot of people that hate donald trump, who are really upset about him. you know, the extremists on this poll who really worry that this was no longer the country they thought it was. they worried about what kind of people we're becoming. if this had gone -- if the numbers hold tonight, i will tell you a lot of people will wake up tomorrow thinking, i'm not sure if the democrats can govern well or not, it may be a rough couple of years, but i recognize this country, i feel more comfortable about who we are as americans. >> jeff? >> one of the things the president i'm told by some of his advisers and people that want him to succeed, they feel he's in an echo chamber and only hearing the people at his rallies, which is absolutely the fact of the matter is. but i mean going forward as we look to the story of the night, we still don't know what the outcome of the story of the night is, who campaigned with the president and who sort of, you know, recoiled from that. that will tell us a lot here going forward. but last night at the closing rally again, the president
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surrounded himself by women, ivanka trump, sarah sanders, kellyanne conway. he knows he has a woman voter. >> we are talking about the echo chamber, also with rush limbaugh, sean hannity, justice -- >> let's go back to wolf and justice jake -- oh, john king. i'm sorry. let's go to john king. >> we are only four minutes away from the first poll closings in indiana and kentucky. we are about to get some actual results. let's take a closer look. >> we will get our first big clues on the two big questions here in washington, control of the senate and control of the house. let's start with senate. indiana, a more key public polls at the end show a close contest. this one is personal to the president and, of course, his vice president. the former governor and the former congressman from the state of indiana. this one is personal. it also will go a long way. can democrats have a prayer of taking the senate? joe donnelly will have to hold his seat. will republicans add? this is one of their targets, 51-49 for the republicans right
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now. they hope to add and this is where they hope to do it. let's take a look at this at the presidential level, this state not competitive. it was a blowout for donald trump, his vice president mike pence. i want to go back to 2012 to donnelly's senate race. this is a weak candidate. he got 50%, so it is a tough state for democrat, it was then and more so now in donald trump's republican party, though this is a test tonight for the senate. can joe donnelly hold on in this environment? what message will that send? we'll watch that. i want to switch to the house map and come back to 2018. 435. they're going to start to fill in any moment now. the first one that will fill in will come for us out here, one of the key races. pop out to kentucky. polls close any minute. president carried kentucky 6th by 15 points. he went there to cam pay. amy mcgrath, one of the candidates the party went out of its way to recruit. she tressed health care, he
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stressed the economy. if the democrats -- this is a republican big district. the president won by 15 points. if the democrats are winning this seat tonight, they think they are well on their way to taking back the house. it will be an early clue. one more, wolf. i want to say we also have two races in indiana on our key races list. these both lean republican. we expect the republicans to win here, but they are competitive races. we'll watch these as well. this one in the southern part of the state, indianapolis suburbs, key an eye on that. can they be competitive? this race in the northern part of the state, again we lean it republican, we expect the republican incumbent to win the race tonight, but if you are looking for evidence is there a blue ripple, a bigger blue wave, if the races are competitive, the early results will be in any minute now. we will watch that as well. kentucky 6th, the big one we are looking at when it comes to the house, but if there's more democratic strength in the electorate, we will see evidence of it in indiana. >> we're about to get new clues, what will happen in the house and the senate. this is a moment a lot of people have been waiting for.
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the first results are about to come in. we are watching it, oh, so closely. a high stakes night here in washington as voters across the nation are delivering a midterm verdict on the trump presidency. we are standing by for the first votes this hour. we want to welcome our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer along with jake tapper. hee are he we are here in the cnn election center and we're counting do to making projections in the battle for control of congress. at 7:00 voting ends in georgia, indiana, south carolina, kentucky. some polling places in indiana and kentucky are closing right now, and votes from those districts could start coming in at any moment. this is the hurdle democrats face tonight in the house. they need to win 23 republican-held seats to reclaim the majority and keep the seats they have now. in the senate, democrats have to win two seats now held by republicans and hold on to their existing number of seats. jake, we expect to get the first
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results in seconds. >> in seconds, and, wolf, this will be the earliest test of how democrats are going to do tonight and whether control of the house is in the democrat's grasp. we will get important clues when the first results come in from kentucky. democrat amy manage gragt has a chance of defeating republican incumbent andy barr who rode the trump wave to a big victory two years ago. in the fight for the senate, democrats on defensive in indiana. joe donnelly has embraced key aspects of the trump agenda to try to hold on to his senate seat in this state where the president won by double digits. donnelly is facing a tough challenge from republican mike braw braun. let's check in with manu raju on capitol hill. >> reporter: yes, they're bracing for the possibility they may lose the house and believe that president trump's scorched earth message on immigration may have hurt


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