UPDATE: 8:55: Okay, folks, that’ll do it for the In Box live blog for tonight. After this, as actual NY numbers start coming in, we’ll be using the micro-blog on the front page of NCPR.org. You can still feel free to post opinions, thoughts, views, and conversation below. Happy election day 2013!
UPDATE: 8:40: A nervous night for Democrats? Republican Ken Cuccinelli is looking strong so far in Virginia. Democrat Terry McAuliffe has some serious ground to make up with about half the precincts still to report.
UPDATE: 8:15pm: Gov. Chris Christie re-elected in a landslide in New Jersey. The first step in a 2016 campaign? It’ll be interesting if Christie, as a moderate, wins big in a blue state while tea party activist-conservative Republican Ken Cuccinelli stumbles in purple Virginia.
UPDATE: 8pm. Ballot Booth Weariness. With an hour to go, is it heresy to suggest that maybe a 6 am to 9 pm window for polling is excessive? Virginia wraps up at 7 pm, New Jersey at 8 pm. Do NY voters need 15 hours to get the job done, especially now that we have easier absentee and mail-in voting?
UPDATE: 7:40pm. NY Times reporting “light turnout” in NYC, in part because of the lopsided mayoral race. Innovation Trail reporter Jenna Flanagan in Schenectady says there has been a “light stream of dedicated voters” in Central NY.
UPDATE: 7:25 pm: Polls are closed in Virginia. We’re still 90 minutes out from the end of voting in NY, but Virginia’s election is already being tallied and New Jersey closes in 30 minutes.
UPDATE: 7:20pm: Incumbent-challenger dynamics in SLC contests.
UPDATE 7:10pm: St. Lawrence County DA Race
UPDATE: 7pm. Election night factoid: According to the NYS board of elections there are 11,016,685 “active registered” voters in New York. Follow the latest updates on voting on the ballot props at the BOE’s website here.
UPDATE: 6:50. Eager voter! A woman crashed her car into the fire hall in Theresa today, in Jefferson County, as folks were voting inside. No injuries reported and the vote continues there using a different door…according to the Watertown Daily Times, the driver was on her way to vote when the mishap occurred. She apparently suffered minor back pain.
UPDATE: 6:40 pm: Other politics: Gay marriage advances again, this time in Illinois. Read about it here.
PDATE: 6:30pm: A big test today for two new Adirondack green groups. This election season has seen a fascinating effort by newer, smaller Adirondack environmental groups to redefine the debate over the NYCO minerals land swap proposal in the Adirondacks. This had looked like a shoo-in. But activists like Dan Plumley at Adirondack Wild and Peter Bauer at Protect the Adirondacks have waged a smart, low-budget campaign using social media and free news and blog media coverage to spread their opposition message. Will that be enough to offset NYCO’s media ad budget, along with the support for the swap from bigger groups like the Adirondack Council and the Adirondack Mountain Club? We’ll see in a few hours. But if they pull it off, this will be a big statewide victory for Protect and Adk Wild.
UPDATE: 5:50pm: NATIONAL PICTURE. A lot of big races on the ballot today, from governor’s races in New Jersey and Virginia to big mayoral races around the US. NPR has a great primer on the contests worth watching.
UPDATE: 5:30pm: The other controversial DA’s race in the North Country? David Sommerstein had a fascinating look this week at the St. Lawrence County DA’s race. An equally heated fight has developed in Washington County’s prosecutor race. Incumbent Republican Kevin Kortright is facing Republican challenger Assemblyman Tony Jordan. It’s been a bitter contest and the Glens Falls Post Star endorsed the challenger. Read details here.
UPDATE: 5:10 pm: The long arm of Mayor Rabideau? Voters in Plattsburgh choose a new mayor today. Chris Knight at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise reported this week that Saranac Lake and former Plattsburgh Mayor Clyde Rabideau has been supporting independent candidate Chris Rosenquest.
“I did give him some advice on how to write news releases, basic news release 101, and just general advice about how to go door to door,” Rabideau said. “Just basic stuff, as a friend.”
Rosenquest faces Republican James Calnon and Democrat Mark Tiffer in today’s vote. Remember, polls close at 9pm.
UPDATE: 4:40 pm. Women mayors advance in Upstate NY. So New York City won’t have a woman as mayor, after Christine Quinn flamed out in hte Democratic primary. But Capital New York notes that women are on track to lead three of upstate New York’s biggest cities, Albany, Rochester and Syracuse.
If successful, Lovely Warren in Rochester and Kathy Sheehan in Albany will be the first women to lead their respective cities. Stephanie Miner was elected the first female mayor of Syracuse in 2009 and is hoping for another term. All are Democrats.
UPDATE 4:20 pm: New York City is preparing to elect a liberal-progressive mayor tonight, a huge pendulum swing from the Bloomberg-Giuliani era. Do elections matter? Big changes appear to be underway for NY’s biggest community. Does anyone know if Mayor-in-waiting de Blasio has ever come to the Adirondack-North Country?
UPDATE 3:40 pm: Green Party rising? One of the more interesting hyper-local races on the ballot this year is in the town of Jay in Essex County. Fred Balzac, who has run repeatedly in the past, is seeking a seat on the town council again as a Green Party candidate. The race has gotten feisty at times. Shawn Kittle at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise has a preview here. Can a Green Party candidate capture an elected seat this time around? We’ll find out later tonight.
UPDATE 3:30 pm: Want a quick look at races in the Old Forge area? The Adironack Express’s Megan Ulrich lines it out here.
UPDATE 3:20 pm: Looks Governor Andrew Cuomo is robo-calling in an effort to push through the casino gambling proposition (#1) but isn’t taking an outspoken stand on the Adironack land swap amendments (#4 and #4) according to the Albany Times-Union.
It’s possible though that by drawing more New Yorkers’ attention to the flip side of the ballot, he’ll raise the number of people outside the North Country who are signaling yes or no on the Adirondack props.
#### ### ### ### ### ### ##### ##
So the polls have been open since morning. People are deciding a wide range of big-ticket items that will shape New York and the North Country.
As of tomorrow morning we’ll have a new Plattsburgh mayor, a new Canton mayor, we’ll have settled some long-debated land swap proposals, opened (or closed) the door to new casino gambling in the Empire state, and more.
This one page will give you a ton of information about what’s at stake. We’ll be blogging through the evening with results and new information. To get us started, chime in with how you voted and why.
NYCO land proposal? Racquette Lake Township 40 issue? The DA’s race in St. Lawrence County? What got you to the ballot box this election season?
And what’s up with all the office-holders running unopposed this year? (This list from the Glens Falls Post Star is depressing.) Is it a good thing that in an election year a lot of the ballot doesn’t offer real options?