We've finally made it: Election Day 2016 is here. Unlike the previous two national elections, when we anxiously awaited the sure election of the black president, today feels different. It feels like the bus ride home after your teacher called your parents when you acted up in school, or the good night kiss after a first date when you found out your date doesn't believe the Earth is round and regularly puts sugar on their grits: You just want to get home and get it over with.
This election cycle has been the nastiest, most preposterous political season since 1852, when Franklin Pierce was accused of deleting 30,000 telegraphs and Winfield Scott was caught on a Gramophone recording bragging about how he grabs women by the "petticoat junction."
But here we are. Today, from our campaign-monitoring headquarters in my mama's basement (If Trump wins I want to be underground, close to what will probably be my last sweet potato pie and near someone who knows the Lord), we will live-blog the election. Throughout the day we will keep you informed on any political happenings, comment on the state of the race and pray for the Trump supporter who will be injured when a 75-year-old black grandmother beats them to within inches of their life for questioning her voting credentials. (That is going to happen, trust me. I have watched enough pro wrestling to know how this entire political season's storyline ends.)
This is probably not the live blog you want to follow if you need the results for the 117th Congressional District race or want to know who won alderman in Cook County, Ill. But if you want to end this presidential-campaign period like it's the last day of your senior year in high school, join us here as we make fart noises and throw toilet paper over this entire travesty of an election cycle.
Nov. 9, 2016, 2:03 a.m.: Trump takes the stage and announces that Hillary has called him to concede the election. All over there is despair about the prospect of a Trump presidency, and maybe this live blog no longer seems funny, but let me tell you a story:
I have seen a man die in front of me. I have been in the eye of two hurricanes. I have eaten fried chicken cooked by white people. But perhaps the most scared I have ever been was Nov. 4, 1980. All I remember hearing as a child was chatter from people saying if Ronald Reagan was elected president, black people would be “back picking cotton.”
I had heard of slavery. I did not want to be a slave. I remember going to bed that night very afraid. I remember asking my grandmother to pray with me. When I awoke the next morning, Ronald Reagan had won.
I was never a slave. I still don't know how to pick cotton. America did not collapse.
And so it shall be again.
We have survived kidnapping, being hauled across the ocean shackled in the bowels of ships, crammed together like cords of wood, half a millennium of slavery, another century of Jim Crow and countless other egregious acts that left us bloody but unbowed. We aren’t going anywhere. If Harriet Tubman didn’t shed a tear when fugitive slave hunters and their hounds were behind her, stop your weeping about the next four years of a Trump administration
If we are to ever perish (and we will not), it damn sure won’t be because a Dorito-colored douchebag with a comb-over and clad in an expensive suit did us in. We are too strong for that.
We will still laugh. We will always dance, and we shall forever and ever overcome.
Now, pass me the Henny while I clean this oil off my TV.
Nov. 9, 2016, 1:06 a.m.: John Podesta tells Hillary Clinton's supporters to go home. I feel the same way.
Go home, America. You're drunk.
Nov. 9, 2016, 12:10 a.m.: Black America is sitting around trying to come up with solutions. So far we've got:
- What if Superman flies backward around the globe real fast?
- Maybe if we unplug America and plug it back in?
- Can Hillary just say, "Hold up. Let's start over. I wasn't ready"?
- Forget this whole Electoral College mess; let's just play one hand of spades for the presidency.
Nov. 8, 2016, 11:30 p.m.: Hillary Clinton wins Nevada, but it is just six electoral votes. She's just shooting 3-pointers in garbage time. Pennsylvania looks like it might fall, too.
Me and mama are just sitting here eating sweet potato pie straight out of the pan, taking shots of Henny and using the anointing oil to fry some chicken wings.
Nov. 8, 2016, 10:31 p.m.: Florida awards its 29 electoral votes to Trump. Perhaps knowing what is to come, they also legalized medical marijuana.
Nov. 8, 2016, 10:15 p.m.: Donald Trump was just awarded the 15 electoral votes for North Carolina.
This election is beginning to feel like an episode of Game of Thrones. Unless Hillary's deleted emails contain information about dragon eggs, things are beginning to look bleak.
On the other hand, If Trump wins, this might just be one of the most exciting series finales ever.
Nov. 8, 2016, 9: 34 p.m.: Trump just won Ohio's 18 electoral votes.
I have started to eat the first of many slices of sweet potato pie. If we have to pick cotton tomorrow, at least I will be well-nourished.
Nov. 8, 2016, 8:44 p.m.: A spokesperson for George W. Bush says the former president did not vote for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.
Upon hearing the news that the last Republican president voted "none of the above" for president, Donald Trump called it "sad" and everyone else in America looked surprised and asked, "You can do that?"
Nov. 8, 2016, 7:20 p.m.: Sad news. Mark Kirk, the Illinois senator who suggested that whites drive faster through the black neighborhoods in his state and called President Obama the "drug dealer-in-chief," lost his Senate re-election bid to Tammy Duckworth, whose family's military service he also derided with a racist comment.
Although this may seem like good news, many of his constituents are saddened because they didn't get to stand outside his campaign headquarters and sing, "Na na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye!"
Nov. 8, 2016, 7:04 p.m.: Polling places in Durham, N.C., have extended voting hours by a variety of times to accommodate larger-than-usual crowds. Durham is 37 percent black, and most political analysts believed Clinton would need strong turnout in the Raleigh-Durham area to replicate Barack Obama's 2008 win in North Carolina. Mitt Romney narrowly carried the state in 2012.
No word yet on whether Trump will sue.
Nov. 8, 2016, 6:20 p.m.: The prayer circle has begun. Readers, please explain to your parents and grandparents that the numbers shown on TV are for individual states, and they are very early results. I'm not trying to say that older people don't understand how election coverage has evolved with social media, the internet and data collection. I'm just saying that someone here just saw the results from Kentucky and Indiana and put anointing oil on the forehead of MSNBC's image of Hillary Clinton. Now my television is all greasy.
Nov. 8, 2016, 5:42 p.m.: Foreshadowing that he might not concede the election, Donald Trump and his supporters are seizing on unverified reports of isolated voting machine glitches by random voters as evidence that the election is rigged.
There is no word yet on whether he will admit his stance is the exact opposite of the alt-right conservatives who say isolated reports of police violence and incidents of prejudice are not proof of systematic racism.
But again, it's still early.
Nov. 8, 2016, 3:38 p.m.: I don't want to say "I told you so." I really want to say, "I told y'all muhf—kas!"
A voter in Philadelphia ran a Trump-supporting "poll watcher" away from the polling location after the voter told the self-appointed poll watcher interfering with his right to cast a ballot that he might have to "go get his dad's belt."
Nov. 8, 2016, 3 p.m.: James O'Keefe, the man who was forced to pay $100,000 for dressing as a pimp to "expose" community organizers registering people to vote and doctoring Planned Parenthood videos, filmed himself today stalking a church van transporting black voters to the polls in Philadelphia.
Federal law prohibits voter intimidation and says, "No person . . . shall intimidate, threaten, coerce . . . any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of [that] person to vote or to vote as he may choose" and defines intimidation as when “a voter is being followed and photographed or has his license plate numbers recorded.”
Nov. 8, 2016, 2:45 p.m.: Clark County, Nev., Judge Gloria Sturman echoed the sentiments of many Americans when Trump's lawyers filed a lawsuit challenging the registrar's decision to leave polls open until 10 p.m. Friday. She denied his challenge, stating, “I am not going to expose people doing their civic duty helping their fellow citizens vote, that they are taking their personal time to preserve … to public attention, ridicule and harassment.” She finished by telling his lawyers to do what many have wanted to tell the carrot-colored candidate since his campaign started: "Sit down."
Nov. 8, 2016, 2:11 p.m.: Trump supporters in Coral Springs, Fla., are reportedly blocking access to the polls for some voters, and a man in East Lansing, Mich., allegedly tried to stop two Muslim women wearing hijabs from voting. If you or anyone you know experiences voter intimidation, call 866-OUR-VOTE for English,
888-VE-Y-Vota for Spanish and 888-API-VOTE for multiple Asian languages.
The Department of Justice also maintains a hotline: 800-253-3931.
If you begin having flashbacks from when white supremacists blocked the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., or when racists attacked buses carrying Freedom Riders in Birmingham, Ala., remind yourself that this is 2016 and we have a black president, so racism must be over.
That should work.
Nov. 8, 2016, 12:53 p.m.: Social media is abuzz wondering why women across the country are heading to the polls wearing all white. No, they aren't coming from a special baptism, and neither are the AKAs or Deltas crossing a pledge line this evening. The outfits are a nod from Hillary Clinton supporters to the women's suffrage movement and the possibility of the first female president of the United States.
No word yet as to whether alt-right advocates will wear red to the polls as a salute to the neo-Nazi flag or the Ku Klux Klan grand dragon or as a tribute to the necks of Trump supporters, but it's still early.
Nov. 8, 2016, 10:04 a.m.: Voters in Tennessee, North Carolina, Louisiana and Georgia are reporting problems with voting machines, forcing some voters to have to endure the indescribable inhumanity of actually filling out paper ballots.
I know the feeling. Last night, while watching Sportscenter, I couldn't find my remote control and had to get up and change the channel with my hand, like a savage!
Nov. 8, 2016, 8:56 a.m.: Dixville Notch (No, I will not make a joke about the town's name sounding like a home remedy for an STD!), the tiny New Hampshire town that has successfully predicted three of the previous four elections, selected Hillary Clinton in a landslide (four votes for Hillary, two for Trump and one for Gary Johnson) at midnight.
I don't know what this means. I just felt I should say something about it because all the other news outlets reported it like it's a big deal. You know who else correctly picked three out of the last four elections?
Nov. 8, 2016, 8:22 a.m.: I am here at my polling place. I never do early voting. I always vote on Election Day because it makes me feel united with the teeming masses who are gathering across the country to preserve our democracy, and the ancestors who so bravely fought for this right to—
Nah, it's mostly because I'm a chronic procrastinator.
Here's an interesting note: I live in the same district as the plaintiff in Shelby v. Holder, the Supreme Court case that overturned key provisions of the Voting Rights Act. Now every time I go vote, it feels like an act of rebellious defiance. This election seems different. There are many people who are nervously awaiting the results, and truth be told, I woke up this morning with a slight case of the bubbleguts.
But that was probably because I has a Jamaican beef patty and a piece of birthday cake for dinner last night.