Even though voter apathy plagues the 2014 Midterm Elections, millions of Americans will still head to polls and cast their votes today. By the numbers, 435 seats in the House of Representatives are up for grabs, 36 seats in the Senate are open and 36 governorships are on the table. Oh, and some guy named Captain Jack Sparrow is running for County Commissioner in Hennepin, Minnesota.
Harry Reid admits defeat. So do we. G'night, for now.
11:55 PM EST
I congratulate Sen McConnell, who will become Majority Leader. Voters made clear they want us to work together. I stand ready to do that.— Senator Harry Reid (@SenatorReid) November 5, 2014
The reuslts haven’t all been tallied, but most of the important questions we had for today have been settled so far: The Democrats no longer run the Senate; Republicans picked up governorships and seats in the House; Americans want to smoke weed without getting arrested and get paid more for minimum wage jobs; and despite Cosmo’s best efforts, voting still isn’t sexy (see below).
We’re still waiting to hear what’s going on in Alaska, but we’ll fill you in as soon as we hear more. Sleep well, America.
Ted Cruz Refuses to Say Who He’d Support as Senate Majority Leader
On CNN, Wolf Blitzer asked Texas Senator Ted Cruz if he would support Mitch McConnell to be the new Senate Majority leader. Here’s his response:
So, who would Cruz support as Senate Majority Leader? (Answer: Himself.)
First Openly Gay Attorney General Elected in Massachusetts
Maura Healey became the first openly gay Attorney General elected in the United States. Healey will be the top-ranking law enforcement official in the state of Massachusetts, a state that’s led the way in a number of liberal issues including gay rights and universal health insurance (just don’t tell Mitt Romney).
Mo Money, Mo Problems
Well, maybe. Bills to increase minimum wage passed in Arkansas, Nebraska and Illinois, sending a message to Washington that Americans really can’t live off the current federal minimum wage of $7.25, which hasn’t been raised since 2009. Voters in Arkansas, Nebraska and Illinois approved ballot measures on Tuesday to raise their states’ minimum wages, adding fuel to the ongoing debate about the federal standard. Nebraska will raise minimum wage to $9 by 2016, $8.50 in Arkansas by 2017 and $10 in Illinois by 2015. -NT
Republicans Re-Take Governor’s House in Obama’s Home State
President Obama may be a Chicagoan, but that didn’t help his fellow Democrat Pat Quinn in his quest for re-election. Bruce Rauner will now lead the Land of Lincoln. On the bright side, Quinn will become the first Illinois governor of the 21st century to not leave office with corruption charges lodged against him (although he does have two months left on his term).
Ted Cruz’s word choice is gross
What will it take for Iowa’s newly-elected senator Joni Ernst to make the nation’s capital “squeal?” Let’s hope she doesn’t take a page from the Deliverance playbook. The thriler’s infamous “squeal like a pig” scene is the first image that popped into our mind…
Thanks, Ted. —Z.S.
Ron Paul Explains Why Republicans Taking Over the Senate Majority Doesn’t Matter
Former Republican Presidential Candidate Ron Paul has taken to Twitter to discuss why a Republican Senate Majority will not change much about how the country operates. The libertarian-leaning former congressman is calling out his fellow conservatives for their hawkish ways.
Republican control of the Senate = expanded neocon wars in Syria and Iraq. Boots on the ground are coming!— Ron Paul (@RonPaul) November 5, 2014
In Other News, Cosmopolitan Attempts to Make Voting Sexy
10:20 PM EST
Well, that’s one way to get millennial girls to vote, I guess? —N.T.
Obama Will Now Be Able to Smoke Weed Legally at Home.
7:00 PM EST
Voters in Washington, DC voted to legalize recreational marijuana use, which means in 2016 we’ll get to elect a stoner-in-chief. —Z.S.
And, We Have a Walk-Off
10:00 PM EST
The Louisiana Senate race will officially go to a December runoff, which we predicted a couple weeks ago. Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) will go face-to-face against Bill Cassidy ®. Neither of them picked up the majority, and it didn’t help that another Republican took away about 14 percent of the votes away. Till then, they both better perfect their “Blue Steel” look. -NT
Florida Decides to Keep Weed Illegal
6:45 PM EST
The potential of medical marijuana may have lured more young people to the Florida polls than normal, but not enough: 57 percent of voters said yes, but the roposed constitutional amendment needed 60 percent approval to become law. [T]onight’s result does show show that a clear majority of voters in the Sunshine State support a new direction,“ the Marijuana Majority’s Tom Angell told Playboy. "The campaign this year faced several key challenges, including that it took place during a midterm election in which turnout dynamics don’t favor marijuana reform.”
Bummer, bro. — Z.S.
New Hampshire Voters Agree: Scott Brown Doesn’t Have the Complete Package
9:15 p.m. EST
Scott Brown, the former Massachusetts Senator and nude male model, has lost his second straight Senate race. He becomes the first person ever to lose to two women in Senate races.
What Happens if There’s a Tie?
9 p.m. EST
While Republicans are looking to be in good position to take over control of the Senate, there’s a slight possibility that both parties could end up with 50 Senators each. What happens when both Democrats and Republicans have 50 senators? This guy becomes the tie-breaker:
Tom Brokaw Interrupts This Important Election Update to Answer His Phone
9:00 PM EST
Ugh, these millennials with their phones.
Tom Brokaw’s phone alarm just went off as he was speaking on MSNBC. Sounded like an Android. pic.twitter.com/tj71apRE5g— The Slatest (@slatest) November 5, 2014
In 14 states, Polls Closing in 10 Minutes
8:55 PM EST
Who wins in Kansas, South Dakota, Louisiana and Colorado could determine the Senate majority.
Nice Senate Election “Room”, CNN 8:50 PM EST
Hey, neat-o, CNN’s Senate election “room" looks like what everyone thought computer graphics would be like in 1991.
See #LegoSenate below for far more realistic representation. — JD
8:30 PM EST
The rapper weighed in with a mix of humble brags and nothingness a couple hours ago.
I know it’s last minute, but if you haven’t voted, please vote today— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) November 4, 2014
The midterms are extremely important— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) November 4, 2014
I’m supporting the Democratic ticket in these midterms— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) November 4, 2014
Me and my wife met with President Obama two weeks ago— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) November 4, 2014
This Isn’t The First Time McConnell Has Seen This “COME AT ME BRO” Sign
8:33 PM EST
This sign was pretty hard to ignore at Mitch McConnell’s victory party Tuesday night after he secured his re-election in Kentucky Senate. And this wasn’t the first time the sign has been seen. It’s been following McConnell around for months. The slogan might sound familiar because it’s from reality TV show Jersey Shore, and the idea that 70-something year old McConnell would “come after” someone is hilarious. -NT
Republicans Pick Up West Virginia Senate Seat for the 1st Time in 30 Years
8:00 PM EST
Shelly Moore Capito set two records tonight. First she became the first Republican to win the West Virginia Senate seat in nearly 30 years. She’s also the first woman to represent the Mountaineer state in Senate. For more, head over to CNN. — J.M.
Lighting Round: Emotions Playboy.com staff are NOT feeling as we watch these results
7:55 PM EST
“Defeat. McConnell’s re-election means future entertainment for "Daily Show” fans. —Marya Gullo, Playboy’s Digital Photo Director
“Suspense. I’m a little bit underwhelmed.” —Zak Stone, Playboy.com Editor
“Enthusiasm. There’s literally nothing happening.” — Joe Misulonas, Editorial Intern
“Satiation. Where is the Chinese food?” — Nicole Theodore, Editorial Intern
“Excitement. Where are the binders full of women?” — Robin Zucker, SVP of Marketing
“Patriotism. I’m not seeing enough American flags on the screen during cable TV coverage.” — Joe Donatelli, Playboy.com Editor
“Absorption. I’m scrolling over to our Girls section….” — Matt Howard, Social Media Manager
Mashable Gets Creative And Tracks Tonight’s Action With #LegoSenate 7:45 PM EST
For those of you looking for an alternative to CNN’s magic walls and holograms and virtual Wolf Blitzers (you know he’s not a real person, right?), Mashable is tracking tonight’s action with #LegoSenate. Check it.
Because the best democracy is the kind you find in the cushions of your couch several months later.
-Joe Donatelli, Playboy.com Senior Editor
Issues We’re Watching: Legalizing Marijuana in Three States
7:36 PM ET
Voters will be asked questions about legalizing marijuana on Oregon, Alaska and District of Columbia ballots. As for the chances of legalizing weed in these states actually passing, we will be updating this issue as the numbers come in. But so far the District of Columbia has a good chance of passing the initiative, projected back in September. But, Congress can overrule Washington’s choice to legalize it. Always the party-pooper, Congress. —NT
Florida needs more time:
7:30 PM ET
Democratic Governor candidate Charlie Crist’s campaign asked Florida to leave Broward County polls open for two extra hours. According to his campaign:
“We have reports in many cases that voters who were confused about their proper polling location were provided conflicting information and, in many cases, simply gave up attempting to cast a regular ballot"
Why is Florida always such a mess? I’m hoping my grandma and her friends got their vote in on time, unlike in 2000 when they accidentally voted for random independents. In exit polls, Crist is currently up against the incumbent Republican governor Rick Scott.
— Zak Stone, Playboy.com Editor
First Races Called in the Midterms 7:15 PM ET
The first races of the 2014 midterms have been called. Sen. Mitch McConnell wins re-election in Kentucky and all the Republicans win in South Carolina (Lindsey Graham, Tim Scott and Nikki Haley).
— Joseph Misulonas, Playboy Intern
Nevada Might Elect The First Openly Transgender State Legislator, a Republican
Lauren Scott, the Republican candidate in Nevada’s 30th Assembly district, might make history as the first openly transgender elected legislator. She stands a chance at winning against incumbent Michael Sprinkle, even though the district she is trying to represent leans way more to the left. As polls in Nevada close we will provide an update with who is leading in the race.
— Nicole Theodore, Playboy Intern
Stubbs the Cat Belatedly Enters Alaska Senate Race
6 PM ET
Stubbs the Cat is the mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, a town with a population less than 1,000. Apparently taking a page out of fellow Alaskan Sarah Palin’s book, Stubbs is taking his chances on the National stage. Today, Mayor Stubbs announced his write-in candidacy for the Alaska Senate Race. Check out his campaign video below:
Paul Begala Is Really Concerned About the Rottencrotches
4:50 PM ET
While appearing on CNN, Begala implored viewers to reach out to people they know who haven’t voted. Although he chose an…interesting family in his example.
Lil’ Jon Didn’t Get His Absentee Ballot, So He Flew Across The Country To Vote
4:37 PM ET
If you had any excuse for not being able to vote today, Lil’ Jon easily puts you to shame. He flew back to his home district of Atlanta to vote because he didn’t get his absentee ballot. But hey, when you are a famous rapper with millions of dollars, it’s a lot easier to hop on a last minute plane.
He is one of the celebrity faces of Rock The Vote, and if this video didn’t get you to vote, we aren’t sure what will. #turnoutforwhat
The Only Vote That Matters
12:24 PM ET
I voted . LLAP pic.twitter.com/DZBvf2wLrk— Leonard Nimoy (@TheRealNimoy) November 4, 2014
Captain Jack Sparrow is a Real Candidate, and it’s not Johnny Depp
12:00 PM ET
Well, that’s one way to spice up a ballot. A candidate named Captain Jack Sparrow is running for County Commissioner in Hennepin, Minnesota, and he’s totally real.
According to local news reports, Sparrow is a Occupy-affiliated activist who’s focus is housing issues. He ran for Mayor of Minneapolis in 2013, and that really is his legal name. Hopefully he doesn’t have a rum problem, though.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s (D) Social Media Team Posted This on Twitter. Crack jokes ensue 8:58 AM ET
The only vote Texas Dem Candidate for Gov. Wendy Davis needs is from Wu-Tang enthusiasts Nov 4 2014 7:48 AM CT
…And this is the last time we’re expecting to see Wendy Davis until the polls close. pic.twitter.com/nhkIJBFUp3— Emily Baucum (@EmilyBaucum) November 4, 2014
We really, really hope wearing that T-shirt was her idea.
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