Voters in Vermont will head to the polls on Tuesday to make their voices heard in the 2016 election. Vermont, of course, is one of several states in the Northeast that is solidly blue, and there is essentially no chance that Hillary Clinton does not win it. But that doesn’t mean voters should stay home, as there’s an important gubernatorial race, plus races for the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House, lieutenant governor, and more.
Here’s what you need to know as you head to the polls this year.
POLLING HOURS & LOCATIONS: Polls in Vermont open between 5:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. depending on your location, but all of the polls will close by 7:00 p.m. As long as you are in line by 7:00 p.m., you will be able to vote. To find out where you go to vote, use the Vermont Secretary of State’s online resource, entering some of your information to receive the address of your polling precinct.
TRACKING RESULTS: Election results will be posted as they come in on the Vermont Secretary of State’s website. Click the drop down menu to pick which race you’d like to see the results for, and you can click on the map to your left to get vote totals for each county.
WHAT’S AT STAKE IN FEDERAL RACES: In terms of the presidential race, very little is at stake in Vermont. In 2012, Barack Obama won the state by a margin of 36 percentage points. No Republican has won Vermont since 1988. But Vermont does have a U.S. senate race this year, with incumbent Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy being challenged by Republican Scott Milne. In the U.S. House of Representatives, Democratic Representative Peter Welch is being challenged by Erica Clawson of the Liberty Union Party. This is the only U.S. House race on the 2016 ballot.
WHAT’S AT STAKE IN THE STATE RACES: The biggest Vermont race this year is the gubernatorial election between Democrat Sue Minter and Republican Phil Scott. They are both seeking to replace the state’s current governor, Democrat Peter Shumlin, who decided not to seek reelection. Since 1963, every Vermont governor has been of a different party than the previous one, with the last three governors being Democrat Howard Dean, Republican Jim Douglas, and the current governor, Democrat Peter Shumlin. There is also a race for lieutenant governor this year. Phil Scott would have been eligible to run for reelection, but he instead decided to enter the gubernatorial race. The candidates for lieutenant governor are Democrat David Zuckerman, Republican Randy Brock, and Boots Wardinski of the Liberty Union Party.
In addition, Vermont will elect a new attorney general. The state’s current attorney general, Democrat Bill Sorrell, has served since 1997, but he decided not to run for reelection this year. Vying for his seat are Democrat T.J. Donovan, Republican Deborah Bucknam, and Rosemarie Jackowski of the Liberty Union Party. Next up is the secretary of state race, where Jim Condos is seeking reelection but is being challenged by Mary Alice Herbert of the Liberty Union Party. Vermont Treasurer Elizabeth Pearce, a Democrat, is also seeking reelection, being challenged by Murray Ngoima of the Liberty Union Party. Finally, Vermont’s Auditor, Democrat Doug Hoffer, is seeking reelection, challenged by Republican Dan Feliciano and Marina Brown of the Liberty Union Party.
In the Vermont Senate, 16 candidates are running unopposed, but 14 seats are up for election. Democrats currently hold control of the Vermont State Senate, holding 19 seats to the Republicans’ nine. And in the House of Representatives, there is competition for 70 out of the chamber’s 150 seats. Democrats also have control over the Vermont House of Representatives, holding 85 seats to the Republicans’ 53.
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