The polls in Illinois and many states around the country are closed and the results are coming in. In our election night liveblog, we'll follow the results and give you reports from Obama and Illinois congressional campaign headquarters as well as from some of the hot spots in Chicago.
The polls in Illinois and many states around the country are closed and the results are coming in. In our election night liveblog, we'll follow the results and give you reports from Obama and Illinois congressional campaign headquarters as well as from some of the hot spots in Chicago. Check back often for updates.
UPDATE 1 (7:35 p.m.): About 75 Chicagoans are braving the cold and rain so far to take part in the CNN viewing party at the Thompson Center.
UPDATE 2 (7:42 p.m.): Meanwhile, 8th congressional district candidate Tammy Duckworth spoke to the press at her election night headquarters at the Elk Grove Village Holiday Inn, saying it's a close race and has been a long day. She also repeatedly said, "Anytime you are outspent 12 to 1 by outside Super PAC Money, you expect the race to be close," according to PI reporter Matthew Blake.
Her supporters cheered when WGN-TV showed an exit poll with her leading incumbent and Tea Partier Joe Walsh 55 to 45.
UPDATE 3 (7:45 p.m.): Over at 11th congressional district Democrat Bill Foster's campaign, PI's Steven Ross Johnson reports: No sight of Foster at his headquarters in Bolingbrook. Press still trickling in, and no sign of supporters.
UPDATE 4 (7:58 p.m.): We talked to the Bustos campaign and learned how the candidate rallied for votes on election day in her race against U.S. Rep. Bobby Schilling in the 17th congressional district.
UPDATE 5 (8:02 p.m.): From PI's Steven Ross Johnson at Foster's campaign headquarters: Supporters have just started to file into the banquet hall at Foster headquarters, all eyes are glued to the wide screen showing the presidential elections returns. Early results out of DuPage County have Foster ahead of Biggert 51 percent to 47 percent with less than 1 percent of precincts reporting, according to the Board of Elections web site.
UPDATE 6 (8:17 p.m.): We talked to Lakeview voters today about constitutional amendment 49, money in politics and the probability of a recount in the presidential election.
UPDATE 7 (8:19 P.M.): News from the 17th Congressional District: With 5 percent of precincts reporting out of Rock Island County, Bustos leads Schilling 54 percent to 45 percent.
UPDATE 8 (8:22 p.m.): Results out of Will County show Foster leading Biggert 58 percent to 40 percent with 24 percent of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 9 (8:25 P.M.): WICS ABC 20 Tweets: Illinois Pension Constitutional Amendment: 57% Yes, 43% No with 32% precincts reporting
UPDATE 11 (8:27 p.m.): According to Cook County Clerk, Duckworth leads Walsh 54.6 percent to 46.4 percent with 138 of 193 precincts reporting, reports PIs Matthew Blake.
UPDATE 12 (8:29 p.m.): Dozens of reporters and supporters are watching the national results come in at the Northbrook Hilton. Still no sign of 10th district Democratic nominee Brad Schneider. Mood remains optimistic.
UPDATE 13 (8:32 p.m.): From PI's Steven Ross Johnson (SRJ): Reports out of suburban Cook County has Biggert with a big lead over Foster 64 percent to 35 percent. Keeping it in perspective, that is with less than 1,200 votes tallied.
UPDATE 14 (8:45 p.m.): We went to Hyde Park today to talk to voters about President Barack Obama's re-election campaign. We also headed down to the 2nd congressional district where residents expressed concerns about voting for incumbent Jesse Jackson Jr.
UPDATE 15 (8:50 p.m.): Results out of Peoria County in the 17th Congressional District race has Bustos leading Schilling 52 percent to 46 percent, with 66 percent of precincts reporting. ABC News has reported Bustos leading Schilling 56 percent to 44 percent with 31 percent of all precincts reporting.
UPDATE 16 (8:52 p.m.): From PI's SRJ: Cheers coming from the crowd at Foster election night headquarters as CBS News reports that Foster is ahead of Biggert 58 percent to 42 percent with 18 percent of all precincts reporting.
UPDATE 17 (9:01 p.m.): More cheers from the Foster crowd as CBS News reports Obama leading in the electoral count, 157 to 153 over Mitt Romney.
UPDATE 18 (9:06 p.m.): From PI's Matthew Blake: WGN reports that Dold is ahead of Schneider 52 percent to 48 percent with 95 percent of precincts reporting. So I would say it looks bad for Schneider.
UPDATE 19 (9:09 p.m.): From Ellyn Fortino at the Schneider election night headquarters: Steve Sheffey, 52, a Democratic activist in Highland Park and the 10th district, said the crowd's mood at the Northbrook Hilton is hopeful.
But “The mood for me right now is depressed,” Sheffey said, after checking 10th district polls. Schneider is down about 5,000 votes, the Chicago Tribune reports. Schneider has yet to arrive to the party.
"If Schneider doesn’t win, we’ll find a different candidate to win next time," Sheffey said. "It’s a very democratic district, and Dold’s going to have to put up with us every two years. It’s drawn for a Democrat, and if we don’t win this time, we have to figure out what went wrong."
UPDATE 20 (9:12 p.m.): CNN is calling New Hampshire, which has 4 electoral votes, for President Barack Obama.
UPDATE 22 (9:22 p.m.): Cheri Bustos leads Bobby Schilling 53 percent to 47 percent in 17th congressional district with 51 percent reporting, according to WGN, writes PIs Matthew Blake.
UPDATE 23 (9:30 p.m.): Earlier today, 600 Illinois SEIU members and staff climbed aboard a bus joined forces with those in Wisconsin to help get out the vote in Milwaukee.
SEIU was also active in Joliet and Aurora (the 11th congressional district) doing door-to-door calls with voters. In Chicago, SEIU members were also making calls to voters in key states.
The union also had members in Ohio making calls in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus and Toledo.
UPDATE 24 (9:35 p.m.): Obama is the projected winner of Michigan, Romney's home state. Find out why commentators think he won the state.
UPDATE 25 (9:41 p.m.): From PI's Matthew Blake: According to Chicago Board of Elections, Derrick Smith will decisively defeat Lance Tyson. He is ahead 63 percent to 37 percent in 10th district state rep race with 81 percent reporting.
UPDATE 26 (9:43 p.m.): NBC News has already called the race for Duckworth in the 8th Congressional District.
The CREDO SuperPAC, which worked against Walsh during this election cycle released this statement in response to the news:
Illinois voters sent a clear message to the Tea Party by voting out Joe Walsh, one of their loudest mouthpieces in Congress,” said Eric Ming, New Media Director of CREDO SuperPAC. “This victory would not have been possible without the volunteers who worked tirelessly to defeat Joe Walsh for his attacks on Illinois women and seniors. We couldn’t be happier with the voters of Illinois for kicking out the most offensive Congressman in the country.
UPDATE 27 (9:47 p.m.): The race has tightened considerably in the 17th Congressional District, with ABC News reporting Bustos still ahead of Schilling 53 percent to 47 percent with 71 percent of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 28 (9:49 p.m.): A source close to the Foster campaign just said the race looks as if it will be increasingly difficult for Biggert to gain enough ground to catch Foster, reports PIs SRJ.
UPDATE 29 (9:52 p.m.): With 98 percent of precincts reporting, NBC News is reporting Brad Schneider up by nearly 3,000 votes over Bob Dold, writes PIs SRJ.
UPDATE 30 (9:55 p.m.): There has been a Rahm Emanuel sighting at McCormick Place.
UPDATE 31 (9:56 p.m.): A Duckworth spokesman tells PI that they are waiting for the AP to call the race before issuing a statement of victory.
UPDATE 32 (9:59 p.m.): In election news going on in another state: In Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren has just claimed victory in her senatorial race over incumbent Republican Scott Brown. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee just sent out a celebratory email to its members touting the win.
UPDATE 33 (10:01 p.m.): Biggert just called to concede the race to Foster. Foster has won the 11th.
UPDATE 34 (10:06 P.M.): Cheers of "Tammy! Tammy!" at Duckworth's headquarters due to her almost certain victory. The cheers were followed by gasps as new results in Schneider/Dold race hit the screen: 50 percent to 50 percent, with 97 percent reporting. Duckworth's husband is now speaking to the crowd.
UPDATE 35 (10:08 p.m.): Biggert just gave her concession speech congratulating Foster on his victory tonight.
UPDATE 36 (10:10 p.m.): CNN is projecting that President Obama wins Iowa.
UPDATE 37 (10:12 p.m.): Both ABC and NBC call the race for Bustos in her 17th congressional district race against Bobby Schilling.
UPDATE 38 (10:14 p.m.): With no official winner yet in the 10th congressional district race, Schneider is still MIA at his election hight headquarters, according to PI's Ellyn Fortino.
UPDATE 39 (10:21 p.m.): President Barack Obama wins re-election.
UPDATE 40 (10:26 p.m.): From SRJ: Foster is now talking with reporters after victory speech... cracked a smile upon hearing word Obama won re-election.
UPDATE 41 (10:31 p.m.): From PI's Matthew Blake: Duckworth said that Walsh was "gracious in defeat", but that as a Congresswoman she will work "on practical solutions." She said that no longer would "compromise" be "ridiculed". She compared her golden hour after helicopter accident in Iraq to the golden hour that America is going through now.
UPDATE 42 (10:36 p.m.): Scenes from the Schneider headquarters as Obama is announced the winner.
UPDATE 43 (10:51 p.m.): Shortly after election polls closed Progress Illinois checked in on the candidates in Illinois’ 12th Congressional District, where the race turned nasty through political mudslinging in the final days. The AP reporting the winner to be Democrat Bill Enyart. We take a look at the race.
UPDATE 44 (10:53 p.m.): From PIs SRJ: Foster is still making his way through the crowd of supporters, greeting them and thanking them for their support. Many of them are still here waiting for the President to speak.
UPDATE 45 (10:57 p.m.): Dold has just conceded the 10th district race to Schneider. ABC 7 News and WGN are calling it for the Democrat.
UPDATE 46 (11:02 p.m.): Democrats are poised to maintain control of the U.S. Senate, according to The Hill.
UPDATE 47 (11:24 p.m.): Despite confusion on polling places, Chicago voters made sure to hit the booth to make their voices heard on important issues.
UPDATE 48 (11:31 p.m.): Alexi Giannoulias is among the crowd at Obama's McCormick Place celebration.
UPDATE 49 (11:36 p.m.): A Democratic strategist tells WGN news that the President's campaign kept the ground game going up until the very end, with volunteers making calls in states that still had polling places closed even while polls were closed in other states.
UPDATE 50 (11:37 p.m.): WGN reports that there were boos at the Romney election night headquarters when CNN called the race for Obama.
UPDATE 51 (11:40 p.m.): Kim Malek, Brad Schneider’s sister, had tears in her eyes after her brother gave his victory speech. She said she was overjoyed with excitement. For much of the night it was a close race. She said that's "because two great people ran."
It's been more than 30 years since a Democrat has held the 10th congressional seat. Schneider said he was honored to be the next congressman, and he will get to work for the 10th district residents.
UPDATE 52 (11:43 p.m.): 'Ain't No Stopping Us Now' is playing at Obama election night headquarters.
UPDATE 53 (11:48 p.m.): In a win for gay rights advocates, same-sex marriage legislation passes in Maine and Maryland.
UPDATE 54 (11:55 p.m.): Romney has called President Obama to concede the presidential race and is now making his televised concession speech.
UPDATE 55 (12:10 a.m.): Chicago's Asian American voters are feeling alienated in the political arena and lament outsourcing. Click through for our story on this issue.
UPDATE 56 (12:18 a.m.): Duckworth to thank voters and volunteers in Rolling Meadows and Schaumburg tomorrow. “I am so thankful to the residents of the 8th Congressional District who came out to vote and my supporters and volunteers who worked so hard for my campaign,” said Duckworth in a statement this evening. “It is now time for all the residents of the 8th Congressional District to come together and help each other find solutions to our nation’s challenges.”
UPDATE 57 (12:19 a.m.): From PI's Nathan Greenhalgh: Despite the steady cold drizzle, over a hundred people marched from Chinatown to the McCormick Center to hold a vigil in support of immigration rights.
The march and subsequent vigil were organized by the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, culminating its get-out-the-vote effort for Latinos and immigrants. Holding candles, participants listened to speeches from members about what immigration meant for them and their families, along with words from U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, who represents Illinois’ 4th Congressional district.
Check back with Progress Illinois for our full coverage of this event.
UPDATE 58 (12:32 a.m.): Obama's motorcade has arrived at McCormick Place. His speech is soon to come.
UPDATE 59 (12:38 a.m.): Obama takes the stage for his victory speech with Stevie Wonder's "Signed Sealed Delivered" playing in the background.
UPDATE 60 (12:52 a.m.): Obama says he will return to the White House "more determined and inspired than ever".
UPDATE 61 (12:59 a.m.): Obama ends his election night speech to roaring applause.
UPDATE 62 (1:03 a.m): In victory, Duckworth calls for pragmatism, aims to take district in new direction. Click through for our full story from her election night headquarters.
UPDATE 63 (1:05 a.m.): Democrat David Gill's campaign says the race is too close to call with 10,000 outstanding ballots to tally. His campaign manager released the following statement:
Rodney Davis jumped the gun and gave a premature victory speech in Taylorville less than an hour ago. In a campaign marred by lies and distortions, Mr. Davis continued his strategy of misleading the voters.
From what we now know from our discussions with county clerks’ offices, there are a significant number of ballots still outstanding in Macon County. We believe we need to keep counting ballots.
Dr. Gill intends to speak to supporters when the results from these remaining 9 precincts have been reported by election officials. The voters of the 13th Congressional District deserve nothing less.
UPDATE 64 (1:17 a.m.): The Tea Party says they are not done, despite the loss of some of their sweethearts, like U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh.
"The Tea Party has not yet begun to fight. It's time for a wholesale reassessment of the D.C. establishment politicians and party grandees who have no commitment or courage to reduce the size of government. We now have another four years ahead of us with Barack Obama leading the charge against liberty," TPNN News Director Scottie Hughes said. "There were some bright spots tonight from Ted Cruz to Jeff Flake, to a decisive win in the U.S. House where Tea Partiers have a mandate to stand against Obama's big government second-term agenda.
"I eagerly await the day the GOP establishment figures out that the 'safe' candidates are not getting the job done," added Hughes. "The GOP needs to adhere to stricter ideological purity and put forth candidates that represent a significant difference in viewpoint from the Democrats that are creating devastating policies for Americans. The Republican Party has been shoving 'their' candidate down the throats of conservatives for years, and it's not working. It's time for them to wake up."
The group went on to say they will spend the next four years looking for "candidates with clear conservative records; no more Dole-McCain-Romney nominees."
Todd Cefarrati, editor of the Tea Party News Network, said, "We are disappointed tonight, but tomorrow morning the work begins. We will search every corner of this country for strong conservatives, not wishy-washy moderates. There's a change coming to our national politics, and TheTeaParty.net and the Tea Party News Network will be on the frontlines waging this battle."
UPDATE 65 (1:51 a.m.): Brad Schneider unseats Bob Dold in the 10th congressional district. Click through for our full coverage of the happenings at Brad Schneider's election night headquarters.
UPDATE 66 (1:55 a.m.): A Democrat secures a win in the 12 congressional district, while the Green Party candidate celebrates her contribution to the race, especially on environmental issues like global warming. See our full story here.
UPDATE 67 (2:00 a.m.): The proposed Constitutional Amendment 49, which would have increased the number of legislative votes needed to increase public employee pension, did not pass, according to the Associated Press.
UPDATE 68 (2:11 a.m.): And we're done for the night. Check back tomorrow morning (actually, later today) for more news and analysis on the 2012 elections.