US Election – how the night will unfold for UK viewers

Most people in the UK will wake up on Wednesday morning to the news of who the new US President is.  This is a short guide for those that can’t wait to find out the result of this dramatic, if at times unedifying, election.  Throughout the night the BBC, ITV and Sky all have election special programmes, and you may be able to access CNN and other channels.  Here is a rough guide to timings of the key moments through the night on Tuesday and into Wednesday morning, shown in UK time.


A huge exit poll of 100,000 Americans is being conducted throughout the day and results will start feeding to the press.   As some states are still voting, given the different time zones, we won’t be told how people have voted or hear a projected result, but we will start hearing about who has been voting where, and what has motivated them to go to the polls.  The patterns of turnout in different states, cities and counties will be key, coupled with analysis of who is voting.   For example, a high turnout amongst latinos in Nevada is good for Hillary Clinton, while a record turnout in rural Ohio would be a positive sign for Donald Trump.


Polls close in the first states, including Indiana and Kentucky.  Trump should win them both, but watch for the margin.


Polls close in the first of the major swing states: Florida, North Carolina and Ohio.   Hillary is expected to win North Carolina, while Trump looks set to take Ohio.  Florida is too close to call according to current polls.   If either candidate were to sweep these three states, they would almost certainly win the Presidency.


Polls close in Pennsylvania, Texas, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Maryland.   Pennsylvania is leaning Democrat but polls have been tightening and Trump has been campaigning hard in the state in the past few days.  Meanwhile Texas is interesting as it is normally solidly Republican but the result could be closer this time around.

2.00 am

Polls are now closing in some of the most hotly contested states in the centre of the country.  Expect Hillary to win in Colorado and New Mexico, while Trump should win Arizona.

4.00 am

The US TV networks may be ready to predict the result by now, but it really depends how close the election is looking at this stage.   Memories of 2000, when the election was prematurely called for Al Gore and then had to be retracted, mean journalists will want to be sure before announcing the result.

Connect will be following and tweeting results throughout the night at @Connect_Comms

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