Election 2020 Today: America votes, legal challenges loom

Here’s what’s happening Tuesday in Election 2020. Today is Election Day:

HOW TO VOTE: AP’s state-by-state interactive has details on how to vote in this election.

TODAY’S TOP STORIES:

AMERICA VOTES: Americans are making their choice between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden, selecting a leader to steer a nation battered by a surging pandemic that has killed more than 231,000 people and cost millions their jobs. Nearly 100 million Americans voted early, and now it falls to Election Day voters to finish the job. Biden entered Tuesday with multiple paths to victory. Trump had a narrower but still feasible road to clinch 270 Electoral College votes.

VOTER TURNOUT: The scourge of a global pandemic produced an election season like no other in the U.S., persuading record numbers of Americans to cast their ballots early, forcing states to make changes to long-established election procedures and leading to hundreds of lawsuits over how votes will be cast and which ballots will be counted. Election officials have warned that millions of absentee ballots could slow the tallies, perhaps for days, in some key battleground states, and Trump threatened legal action to prevent ballots from being counted after Election Day.

CONTROL OF SENATE: Republicans are fighting to retain their Senate majority against a surge of Democratic challengers across a vast political map in states once considered long shots for Democrats. It’s not just senators on the ballot but also Washington’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis, the economic fallout and the nation’s uneasy mood. With Republicans now controlling the chamber 53-47, three or four seats will determine party control, depending on who wins the presidency.

LEGAL CHALLENGES: Trump says he’s planning an aggressive legal strategy to try to prevent Pennsylvania from counting mailed ballots that are received in the three days after Tuesday’s election. The deadline for receiving and counting absentee ballots in the battleground state is Friday, an extension ordered by Pennsylvania’s top court. But it’s unclear what other legal issues may arise on Election Day. Since the 2000 presidential election, which was ultimately decided by the Supreme Court, both parties have enlisted legal teams to prepare for the possibility that voting wouldn’t settle the contest.

60 YEARS IN THE MAKING: Two tiny New Hampshire communities that vote for president in the first minutes of Election Day, just after the stroke of midnight, have cast their ballots, with one of them marking 60 years since the tradition began. The results in Dixville Notch, near the Canadian border, were a sweep for Biden, who won the town’s five votes. In nearby Millsfield, Trump won 16 votes to Biden’s five. Normally, there would be a big food spread and a lot of media crammed into a small space to watch the voting in Dixville Notch, but the coronavirus pandemic shelved those plans.

QUOTABLE: “Come hell or high water. It feels like that has been the attitude voters have needed to make sure their voices are heard this year.” — Kristen Clarke, executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, on how tens of millions of Americans heeded warnings to vote early.

ICYMI:

Trump ‘army’ of poll watchers led by veteran of fraud claims

‘Raw exposed nerves’: Anxious nation awaits Election Day

It’s here: What to watch on Election Day in America

Biden backers make final plea for delivery of mail ballots

EXPLAINER: A long night, or more, before president is known

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Find AP’s full election coverage at APNews.com/Election2020.

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