The Note: The Day After

WASHINGTON, Sep. 12

While the White House press corps spars with Tony Snow over the meaning of the word "political," voters go to the polls today in nine states -- Arizona, Delaware, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin -- plus the District of Columbia.

The first polls opened at 6:00 am ET. The last ones (in Arizona) will close at 10:00 pm ET.

Vermont: polls open 6 am ET through 10 am ET -- 7 pm ET. Results: LINK

New York: polls open 6 am ET -- 9 pm ET. Results: LINK

Delaware: polls open 7 am ET -- 8 pm ET. Results: LINK

Maryland: polls open 7 am ET -- 8 pm ET. Results: LINK or LINK

Minnesota: polls open 7 am ET -- 8 pm ET. Results: LINK

Rhode Island: polls open: 7 am through 9 am ET -- 9:00 pm ET. Results: LINK

District of Columbia: polls open 7 am ET -- 8 pm ET. Results: LINK

New Hampshire: polls open 8 am ET -- 7 pm ET. Results: LINK

Wisconsin: polls open 8 am ET -- 9 pm ET. Results: LINK

Arizona: polls open 9 am ET -- 10 pm ET. Results: LINK

THERE ARE NO NETWORK EXIT POLLS.

The most closely watched race is in Rhode Island where the GOP is using its resources to help Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), a man who didn't even vote for President Bush in 2004, stave off a challenge from Cranston Mayor Steve Laffey, who has the backing of the anti-tax Club for Growth. In an unusual move, the NRSC has declared that it will cede the state to Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse if Laffey prevails.

In New York, Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) is poised to receive the Democratic Party's nomination for her second term in the United States Senate. She is running against Jonathan Tasini, a labor activist who has struggled to gain traction against the former First Lady despite his sharp denunciations of her position on the Iraq war. With no exit polls, it will be impossible to say how Sen. Clinton's Iraq war vote impacted Democrats in her state. The Note sets the bar for success at 85.3%. The Note also Notes that the New York Times Election Day round-up doesn't even mention the two Republicans running for the party nomination to oppose Clinton in November. Quick: name them both.

In the race to replace retiring Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ) in Arizona's 8th congressional district, the NRCC has taken the unusual step of spending more than $200,000 to help Steve Huffman -- a state representative who favors abortion rights and federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research -- in his race against immigration hard-liner Randy Graf. In a sign that Democrats, like Republican leaders, view the moderate Huffman as the tougher opponent in November, the DCCC has spent $190,000 on a television ad criticizing Huffman on immigration. For Democrats, the frontrunners are Gabrielle Giffords and former local news anchor Patty Weiss.

In Maryland, Democrats will decide whether they want veteran Rep. Ben Cardin (D-MD) or former NAACP head Kweisi Mfume to square off against Lt. Gov. Michael Steele (R-MD), the first African-American elected statewide in Maryland's history.

In the District of Columbia, voters will choose between City Council Chair Linda Cropp and the Blackberry-wielding 35-year-old Adrian Fenty.

Sen. Clinton and former President Clinton were slated to vote at the Douglas Grafflin Elementary School at 6:45 am ET in Chappaqua, NY.

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