The Cable

First Exit Polls Show Voter Preference: Not Clinton or Trump, but Obama

According to the first exit polls, voters approve of Obama — and are not excited about his possible replacements.

first-exit-poll

The first exit polls as reported by CNN late Tuesday afternoon showed few voters are excited or optimistic about the prospect of a Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton presidency, with a majority voicing approval of the job that Barack Obama is doing as president.

Per Edison Research, only four in 10 voters are excited or optimistic about either candidate on the ballot, and roughly the same — that is, four in 10 voters — said their top priority is to elect a president who can bring about change.

Also, 62 percent said their minds were made up before September. That implies that many of the late-election developments — from the FBI’s announcement that it was reviewing more Clinton emails to reports that the bureau is investigating possible Trump ties to Russia — could have influenced a big chunk of the electorate.

These exit poll findings — which are not to be mistaken for actual election results — come toward the end of an Election Day marked by long lines and reports of voter intimidation, New Yorkers booing Trump on his way to vote, a gobsmacked Nevada judge smacking down Trump’s complaints over early voting there, and, of course, plenty of pantsuits and peeping at the polls.

The first polls are scheduled to close at 6 p.m., Eastern time.

Photo credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Emily Tamkin is a staff writer at Foreign Policy covering ambassadorial and diplomatic affairs in Washington. @emilyctamkin

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