Election results – Day 2

Welcome to the Thursday, Nov. 5, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Where the 2020 elections stand
  2. Looking at statewide ballot measure results
  3. Status of state government trifectas and triplexes

Where the 2020 elections stand

It was another busy day and late-night tracking election results. All results in this email are as of 11:30 p.m. EST.

Here are some links for you to bookmark to stay on top of things:

  • A rundown of states’ official results certification dates can be found here. The first state certification date is Nov. 10 for Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Vermont, and Virginia.
  • For updates throughout the day today, visit our results hub page at Ballotpedia.org
  • Stay tuned for our next email update later this morning via our Help Desk newsletter
  • For details about how recounts and challenges work, check out the information we have compiled on our Election Help Desk.
  • Click here to learn how we decide to call an election. 

Now, let’s get into the projected results. 

Who won the presidency?

Media outlets still hadn’t predicted a definitive winner, and neither candidate had conceded. So far, the five media outlets we’re tracking had unanimously called 44 states and Washington, D.C., in the presidential election. Six states remained uncalled, according to Ballotpedia’s election calling policy—Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania—in addition to Maine’s 2nd Congressional District. 

President Donald Trump (R) had won states totaling 213 electoral votes to Joe Biden’s (D) 237.

On Wednesday, Donald Trump’s campaign filed lawsuits in Georgia and Pennsylvania. Subscribers to the Ballotpedia Help Desk newsletter received detailed updates about these yesterday. Click here to learn more.

Who controls the U.S. Senate?

Control of the U.S. Senate as a result of the 2020 elections had not been determined. Twenty-eight of 35 races had been called, and Republicans had 47 seats, while Democrats had 46 seats (including two independents who caucus with Democrats).

Outlets had not reached consensus in Alaska, Arizona, Georgia (regular and special), Maine, Michigan, and North Carolina.

Republicans and Democrats had each flipped one seat:

  • Tommy Tuberville (R) defeated incumbent Doug Jones (D) in Alabama.
  • John Hickenlooper (D) defeated incumbent Cory Gardner (R) in Colorado.

Who controls the House of Representatives?

Control of the U.S. House as a result of the 2020 elections had not been determined, although media outlets project the Democratic Party to maintain their majority. Three-hundred forty-seven of the 435 races had been called. Republicans had won 173 seats to Democrats’ 170.

Republicans flipped four seats, and Democrats flipped two, according to Ballotpedia’s election calling policy. 

Some outlets projected that at least two other districts had flipped, though they had not yet met our race calling policy: Florida’s 26th and 27th Congressional Districts.

State executives

Eleven states held elections for governor. Incumbents won nine of the races. Spencer Cox (R) won in Utah, where the Republican incumbent did not run for re-election. Greg Gianforte (R) won in Montana, making it the only governorship to change partisan control in 2020. After the 2020 elections, Republicans will hold 27 governorships to Democrats’ 23. Seven of the elections this year were in states with a Republican governor, and four were in states with a Democratic governor.

Learn more

Looking at statewide ballot measure results 

Voters in 32 states decided 120 statewide ballot measures on Nov. 3, and Ballotpedia had called the outcome of 93 measures. Seventy-two were approved and 21 were defeated. The remaining 27 were uncalled.

Below are a few noteworthy results:

  • Illinois voters rejected a constitutional amendment to allow for a graduated income tax. The ballot measure would have repealed the state’s constitutional requirement that the state’s personal income tax be a flat rate across income. Instead, the ballot measure would have allowed the state to enact legislation for a graduated income tax. More than $121 million was raised by supporters and opponents of the measure. Supporters raised $60.33 million, including $56.5 million from Gov. J.B. Pritzker. Opponents raised $60.86 million, including $53.8 million from Citadel CEO Kenneth C. Griffin.
  • Voters approved changes to state drug and criminal justice policies in several states. In Oregon, two ballot measures—Measure 109 and Measure 110—were approved. Measure 109 created a program for administering psilocybin products, such as psilocybin-producing mushrooms and fungi. Measure 110 decriminalized Schedule I-IV controlled substances, such as heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamines. 
  • In Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota, voters approved ballot measures to legalize recreational marijuana. Mississippi, along with South Dakota, also approved medical marijuana programs. Voters in Oklahoma rejected a ballot initiative, State Question 805, that would have prohibited the use of a person’s past non-violent felony convictions to impose a greater (enhanced) sentence when sentencing a person convicted of a non-violent felony.
  • In California, voters rejected Proposition 16. Proposition 16 would have allowed the use of affirmative action involving race-based or sex-based preferences in California by repealing Proposition 209, passed in 1996, from the California Constitution. Proposition 209 states that discrimination and preferential treatment are prohibited in public employment, public education, and public contracting on account of a person’s or group’s race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin.
  • California voters approved Proposition 17, which expanded the right to vote to people on parole for felony convictions. In Alabama, Colorado, and Florida, constitutional amendments were approved to state that only a citizen of the U.S. who is 18 years old or older can vote. 
  • Abortion was on the ballot in Colorado and Louisiana. Colorado voters rejected Proposition 115, which would have prohibited abortion after a fetus reaches 22 weeks gestational age. Louisiana voters approved Amendment 1, which added language to the Louisiana Constitution stating that “nothing in this constitution shall be construed to secure or protect a right to abortion or require the funding of abortion.”
  • On election policy issues, both Florida Amendment 3 and Massachusetts Question 2 were defeated. Florida Amendment 3 would have created a top-two primary system, and Massachusetts Question 2 would have adopted ranked-choice voting.

For more on ballot measure results, don’t miss today’s briefing reviewing what we know about results so far. Ballotpedia’s own Josh Altic will be joining me at 11:00 a.m. Central Time as he breaks down the results and what happens next. Click here to secure your spot!

Learn more

Status of state government trifectas and triplexes

A state government trifecta occurs when one party holds the governorship and a majority in both chambers of a state’s legislature. A state government triplex occurs when the governor, attorney general, and secretary of state in a given state are all members of the same political party. We’re monitoring how the 2020 elections will affect the status of trifectas and triplexes throughout the country.


As of last night, Republicans were projected to gain trifecta control in Montana and New Hampshire. It was too early to call one Republican-held trifecta, six Democratic-held trifectas, and four divided governments. If Republicans hold the net gain of two trifectas, the country will have 23 Republican-held trifectas, 15 Democratic-held trifectas, and 12 divided governments.

Heading into the 2020 elections, there were 36 state government trifectas—the most since 2013. Republicans had 21 trifectas, and Democrats had 15. The other 14 states had divided government, meaning neither party had a trifecta.


In the 2020 elections, 13 states held elections for one or more triplex offices. Heading into the 2020 elections, there were 36 state government triplexes—19 Republican triplexes and 17 Democratic triplexes. The remaining 14 states were under divided control.

As of last night, Republicans and Democrats had each gained triplex status in one state. Montana will become a Republican triplex, as they won the governor’s race and maintained control of the secretary of state and attorney general offices. Oregon will become a Democratic triplex, as they flipped the secretary of state’s office and maintained control of the attorney general’s office. Triplex status as a result of the 2020 elections remains undetermined in six states.
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