Politics: 2020 Election: See Insider's comprehensive guide to the presidential and top congressional races

Ahead of 3rd debate, Trump again goes after moderator. This time it's NBC's Kristen Welker he calls 'unfair.'

  Ahead of 3rd debate, Trump again goes after moderator. This time it's NBC's Kristen Welker he calls 'unfair.' Trump praised Welker in the past, complementing her in January for landing a gig on NBC's "Today" show. "They made a very wise decision," Trump said."She’s always been terrible & unfair, just like most of the Fake News reporters, but I’ll still play the game," Trump tweeted Saturday.

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  • Voting in the 2020 presidential election between President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden ends in eight days on November 3.
  • In addition to the key presidential battleground states, there are hundreds of important US Senate and House races that will decide the balance of power in Washington, DC, for years to come.
  • Insider has created individual race guides with information about the candidates, issues, and the state of the race for 115 of the most competitive congressional elections.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
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Voting in the 2020 election is ending in just eight days , and more than 50 million Americans have already cast their ballots.

Kristen Welker praised for ‘masterclass’ debate moderation, Chris Wallace is ‘jealous’

  Kristen Welker praised for ‘masterclass’ debate moderation, Chris Wallace is ‘jealous’ After Fox News' Chris Wallace failed to maintain order during the first presidential debate, NBC News' Kristen Welker earned solid marks Thursday.After Fox News' Chris Wallace failed to maintain order during the first presidential debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden, Welker was applauded for Thursday's controlled exchange.

The race for the presidency between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden is zeroing in on a number of battleground states key in both candidates' quests to win. They'll be battling for the popular vote, but the real election decider is the electoral college.

In the electoral college system, states are allocated a number of electors equal to how many representatives they have in Congress. Presidential candidates must earn 270 electoral college votes or more to win the election. All states except for Maine and Nebraska use a winner-take-all system in which the candidate who wins the most votes earns all of the state's electoral college votes.

In addition to the presidential race, hundreds of critical US Senate and House races on the ballot this fall will determine the balance of power in Washington, DC, for many years to come.

How battleground states process mail ballots -- and why it may mean delayed results

  How battleground states process mail ballots -- and why it may mean delayed results More Americans are voting by mail this election than usual, due to the pandemic. But processing those ballots takes more time. Here's how it works in battleground states. Because of the pandemic, more voters are opting to cast their ballots by mail this year. While the expanded access and increased use of mail-in voting is good for voters, it does create hardships for already strained election officials in many states, including key battlegrounds.

When can we expect the presidential election results

Election Day is Tuesday, November 3, 2020, but tens of millions have already cast their vote.

Election results are never truly finalized on election night, but in most past years, enough of the results have come in on election night for big news networks and outlets to call the winner of the race.

But because of the increase in Americans casting mail ballots, which take longer to process and count than in-person votes and can arrive after Election Day in many states, the outcome of the presidential race and other key down-ballot races may not be called on election night itself.

Arizona, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, and North Carolina, which all allow a substantial amount of pre-processing and counting of mail ballots prior to Election Day, are expected to report a substantial amount of their results on election night.

But the key swing states of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which do not allow for as much pre-processing of ballots before the polls open, will count the bulk of their mail-in ballots on or after Election Day.

Can Democrats flip Texas? Kamala Harris visits Lone Star state as early voting there smashes record

  Can Democrats flip Texas? Kamala Harris visits Lone Star state as early voting there smashes record Unprecedented early voting levels have boosted Democratic hopes in Texas, where early ballots have already surpassed the total votes cast in 2016."What people might have done to better prepare," Harris told a friendly audience of about 300 outside First St. John's Cathedral, an African American church on Fort Worth's east side, after accusing Trump of hiding the true dangers of the pandemic from the American people early this year.

Officials will work hard to process ballots in an accurate and efficient manner, but races in those states may take a little longer to call.

Swing states to watch

Here's what you need to know about the top 10 swing states most likely to decide the election, including what the polls say and how the top election experts and handicappers at the Cook Political Report, Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University, and Inside Elections rate Trump and Biden's chances of winning each state.

There are six states on the map — Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin — that flipped from voting for President Barack Obama in 2012 to vote for Trump in 2016.

  • Arizona accounts for 11 votes in the electoral college. It's rated as "tilts Democratic" by Inside Elections, and "leans Democratic" by the Cook Political Report and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried the state by a margin of 3.5 percentage points over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls in Arizona, Biden leads Trump by 3.5 points.
  • Florida accounts for 29 votes in the electoral college. It's rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by Sabato's Crystal Ball and the Cook Political Report, meaning it has about an equal chance of voting for either Trump or Biden, and is rated as "tilts Democratic" by Inside Elections.
    • In 2016, Trump carried the state by a margin of 1.2 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 polls in Florida, Biden leads Trump by 3.7 points.
  • Georgia accounts for 16 votes in the electoral college. It's rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by the Cook Political Report, Inside Elections, and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump won Georgia by a margin of 5.1 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 polls in Georgia, Biden leads Trump by 0.9 percentage points in the state.
  • Iowa accounts for six votes in the electoral college. It's rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by the Cook Political Report and Sabato's Crystal Ball and "tilts Republican" by Inside Elections.
    • In 2016, Trump won Iowa by a margin of 9.4 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 polls in Iowa, Biden leads Trump by one percentage point.
  • Michigan accounts for 16 votes in the electoral college. It's rated as "leans Democratic" in the electoral college by the Cook Political Report, Inside Elections, and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried Michigan by a margin of 0.3 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls in Michigan, Biden leads Trump by 7.5 percentage points.
  • North Carolina accounts for 15 votes in the electoral college. It's rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by Inside Elections, the Cook Political Report, and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried North Carolina by a margin of 3.6 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls in North Carolina, Biden leads Trump by 2.9 percentage points.
  • Ohio accounts for 18 electoral college votes. It's rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by the Cook Political Report, Sabato's Crystal Ball, and Inside Elections.
    • In 2016, Trump carried Ohio by a margin of 8.1 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls in Ohio, Trump leads Biden by one percentage point.
  • Pennsylvania accounts for 20 electoral college votes. It's rated as "leans Democratic" in the electoral college by Inside Elections, the Cook Political Report, and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried Pennsylvania by a margin of 0.7 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general polls in Pennsylvania, Biden leads Trump by 6.2 percentage points.
  • Texas accounts for 38 electoral college votes. It's rated as "tilts Republican" by Inside Elections and "leans Republican" by the Cook Political Report and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried Texas by a margin of nine percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls in Texas, Trump leads Biden by a margin of 0.5 percentage points on average.
  • Wisconsin accounts for 10 electoral college votes. It's rated as "leans Democratic" in the electoral college by Inside Elections, the Cook Political Report, and Sabato's Crystal Ball.
    • In 2016, Trump carried Wisconsin by a margin of 0.7 percentage points over Clinton. In FiveThirtyEight's average of 2020 general election polls, Biden leads Trump by 6.6 percentage points.

Nebraska's and Maine's 2nd Congressional Districts also account for one electoral college vote each.

How to watch election night 2020: the definitive hour-by-hour guide

  How to watch election night 2020: the definitive hour-by-hour guide Election Day is nearly here, and in a matter of hours we’ll find out whether this is the end of the campaign — or just the beginning of a protracted fight over who won. At 7 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time, which applies to all times mentioned here), we’ll start to see returns from Florida, Ohio, North Carolina and Georgia. Trump won all four of these states in 2016 and needs to win them again in 2020. The good news for viewers is that we should see relatively quick results in these key states, all of which are allowed to start processing (i.e., opening envelopes, validating signatures or even counting) their early votes and mail ballots before Election Day.

Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District is rated as "leans Democratic" in the electoral college by Inside Elections, the Cook Political Report, and Sabato's Crystal Ball. Trump carried the 2nd District by a margin of 2.2 percentage points in the 2016 election, according to the Daily Kos.

Maine's 2nd Congressional District is rated as a "toss-up" in the electoral college by Inside Elections, the Cook Political Report, and Sabato's Crystal Ball. Trump carried Maine's 2nd District by a margin of 10 percentage points in the 2016 election, according to the Daily Kos.

Battleground congressional races to watch

Arizona

Senate:

  • GOP Sen. Martha McSally and Democrat Mark Kelly face off in the special election for US Senate in Arizona

House:

  • AZ-06: Dr. Hiral Tipirneni looks to unseat incumbent Rep. David Schweikert in Arizona's 6th Congressional District

Florida

House:

  • FL-15: Scott Franklin and Alan Cohn compete in the open race for Florida's 15th Congressional District
  • Fl-16: GOP Rep. Vern Buchanan looks to retain his longtime seat against Margaret Good in Florida's 16th Congressional District
  • FL-26: First-term Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell looks to defend her seat in Florida's 26th Congressional District
  • FL-27: First-term Democratic Rep. Donna Shalala fights to defend her seat against Republican Maria Elvira Salazar in Florida's 27th Congressional District

Georgia

Senate:

  • Republican Senator David Perdue faces off against Democrat Jon Ossoff in Georgia
  • What you need to know about the special election for US Senate in Georgia

House:

  • GA-06: Karen Handel looks to regain House seat from incumbent Rep. Lucy McBath in Georgia's 6th Congressional District
  • GA-07: Carolyn Bourdeaux and Rich McCormick square off in Georgia's 7th Congressional District

Iowa

Senate:

  • GOP Sen. Joni Ernst faces a challenge from Democrat Theresa Greenfield for her Iowa Senate seat

    Police, experts monitoring extremist groups to see if poll watchers try to disrupt voting

      Police, experts monitoring extremist groups to see if poll watchers try to disrupt voting The states with the highest risk for election-related violence by armed extremist groups are Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia and Oregon.President Donald Trump, who has falsely claimed voter fraud is widespread, has called for an army of poll watchers to ensure the election is fair. Right-wing extremist groups have signaled they plan to heed the call. Left-wing groups have vowed to confront people they believe are engaged in voter suppression.

House:

  • IA-01: Rep. Abby Finkenauer faces off against Republican Ashley Hinson in Iowa's 1st Congressional District
  • IA-02: Rita Hart and Mariannette Miller-Meeks face off in the open race for Iowa's 2nd Congressional District
  • IA-03: Cindy Axne fights to retain her seat against David Young in Iowa's 3rd Congressional District
  • IA-04: J.D. Scholten and Randy Feenstra vie for a seat in Iowa's 4th Congressional District following Rep. Steve King's primary loss

Maine

Senate:

  • Democrat Sara Gideon takes on GOP Sen. Susan Collins for US Senate in Maine

House:

  • ME-02: Jared Golden and Dale Crafts square off in Maine's 2nd Congressional District

Michigan

Senate:

  • Democratic Senator Gary Peters faces off against Republican John James in Michigan

House:

  • MI-03: Republican Peter Meijer and Democrat Hillary Scholten face off in Michigan's 3rd District
  • MI-06: Rep. Fred Upton faces Democrat Jon Hoadley in Michigan's 6th Congressional District
  • MI-08: Rep. Elissa Slotkin looks to retain her seat against Paul Junge in Michigan's 8th Congressional District

Nebraska

House:

  • NE-02: Incumbent Don Bacon and Kara Eastman vie to represent Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District

North Carolina

Senate:

  • GOP Sen. Thom Tillis faces off against Democrat Cal Cunningham in a competitive US Senate race in North Carolina

House:

  • NC-08: GOP Rep. Richard Hudson competes against Democrat Patricia Timmons-Goodson in North Carolina's 8th Congressional District
  • NC-11: Madison Cawthorn faces off against Moe Davis in North Carolina's 11th Congressional District

Ohio

House:

  • OH-01: Rep. Steve Chabot squares off against Democrat Kate Schroder in Ohio's 1st Congressional District
  • OH-10: 4-term incumbent Rep. Mike Turner squares off against Desiree Tims in Ohio's 10th Congressional District.
  • OH-12: Troy Balderson looks to defend his seat against Democrat Alaina Shearer in Ohio's 12th Congressional District

Pennsylvania

House:

  • PA-01: Democrat Christina Finello moves to unseat Republican Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick in Pennsylvania's 1st Congressional District
  • PA-08: Matt Cartwright and Jim Bognet square off in Pennsylvania's 8th Congressional District
  • PA-10: Eugene DePasquale challenges Scott Perry to represent Pennsylvania's 10th Congressional District

Texas

Senate:

  • MJ Hegar takes on Sen. John Cornyn for US Senate in Texas

    Trump, Biden wait with the world for election results in a contest to decide course of America

      Trump, Biden wait with the world for election results in a contest to decide course of America Millions voted in an election between Trump and Biden to determine how the US responds to COVID-19 pandemic, bolsters the economy and heals divisions.Millions turned out to polls for an election that will determine how to respond to a pandemic that has killed a quarter of a million Americans, bolster an economy that has taken a beating from the virus and heal deep divisions over racial injustice.

House:

  • TX-02: First-term GOP Rep. Dan Crenshaw faces off against Sima Ladjevardian in Texas' 2nd District
  • TX-03: First-term GOP Rep. Van Taylor looks to defend his new seat against Democrat Lulu Seikaly in Texas' 3rd Congressional District
  • TX-07: First-term Rep. Lizzie Fletcher looks to retain her seat against Wesley Hunt in Texas' 7th Congressional District
  • TX-10: Eight-term incumbent Rep. Michael McCaul will face Democrat Mike Siegel in Texas' 10th Congressional District
  • TX-21: First-term Rep. Chip Roy looks to defend his seat against Wendy Davis in Texas' 21st Congressional District
  • TX-22: Sri Preston Kulkarni faces off against Troy Nehls in Texas' 22nd Congressional District
  • TX-23: Gina Ortiz Jones faces off against Tony Gonzales to represent Texas' 23rd Congressional District
  • TX-24: Everything you need to know about Texas' 24th Congressional District House race between Beth Van Duyne and Candace Valenzuela
  • TX-25: 4-term GOP incumbent Rep. Roger Williams squares off against Julie Oliver in Texas' 25th Congressional District
  • TX-31: 9-term incumbent Rep. John Carter squares off against Democrat Donna Imam in Texas' 31st Congressional District
  • TX-32: First-term Rep. Colin Allred squares off against Genevieve Collins in Texas' 32nd Congressional District

Wisconsin

House:

  • WI-03: 12-term incumbent Rep. Ron Kind faces Republican Derrick Van Orden in Wisconsin's 3rd Congressional District
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Fact check: Key Senate races left uncalled due to uncounted ballots, not fraud .
A Facebook post claims the election is fraudulent because states that won GOP Senate seats can't be called for the president. That's not how it works.“So they want us to believe that the same states that Republican Senators won are too close to call for the Republican President? Fraud!” the post reads.

See also