11th UPDATE: 11:32 p.m. EST: The upper Midwest must come through for Hillary Clinton for her to have any chance of making up her deficit. That is not a certainty. Trump effectively slams the door if she doesn’t sweep those states.
10th UPDATE: 10:46 p.m. EST: Dow futures now off almost 700 points.
9th UPDATE: 10:36 p.m. EST: One of the best Twitter posts I’ve seen all night: If Trump wins, America will not wake up to a different country. We’d wake up to the realization that our country is not what we thought.
8th UPDATE: 10:30 p.m. EST: Trump’s win in Ohio and his continuing lead in North Carolina and Florida give him the chance to swell to about 212 Electoral College votes, almost 100 more than Hillary Clinton.
7th UPDATE: 10:16 p.m. EST: FLASH: Dow futures off 500 points as potential for a Trump presidential victory grows
6th UPDATE: 10:08 p.m. EST: Hillary Clinton’s chances of the White House appear to hinge on two eastern states: New Hampshire and Virginia. Absent those two states, she faces a difficult road to the 270 Electoral College votes she must have. She appears certain to lose Florida, and the same result could happen in North Carolina and Ohio.
5th UPDATE: 10:01 p.m. EST: Maybe Richard Nixon was right. Maybe Donald Trump also was when he said the voters were quietly telling the pollsters one thing but definitely planned to do something else. At this moment, it’s likely Trump will win Ohio and Florida, and North Carolina and Virginia are as tight as can be. It appears unlikely that either of these candidates will get much above 275 Electoral College votes.
4th UPDATE: 9:01 p.m. EST: It might or it might not mean anything, but the rout is not on. In the past 40 or so minutes, Hillary Clinton could not build on her lead in the important eastern time zone states.
3rd UPDATE: 8:20 p.m. EST: Donald Trump is in trouble. The states that have been called to this point have gone as expected, but he has slipped behind Hillary Clinton in Ohio and North Carolina. (Florida, as expected, will go back and forth.) He must win those states or his path to the presidency will be ended.
2nd UPDATE: 7:59 p.m. EST: KDKA Radio anchor Rob Pratte stopped by RMU on Tuesday night to interview a few of the students. During a rehearsal, he also picked my brain.
1st UPDATE: 5:52 p.m. EST: Six eastern time zone states will provide an important indicator of how tonight’s presidential election will go. If Hillary Clinton wins any three of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida, she will have taken a huge step toward winning the presidency. If she wins four or more, it’s game over.
ORIGINAL POST: Earlier today, I offered my initial assessment of the 2016 presidential campaign season. Tonight, I am in the RMU Sentry Media newsroom, supervising (with a couple others) more than 30 Robert Morris University students as they deliver a four-hour live broadcast of tonight’s historic event.
Look for me to update this blog regularly, beginning around 8:00 p.m. EST.