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  • Writer's pictureMario Nicolais

How a presidential election begins to feel a lot like The Long Night

After years waiting for the confrontation, sifting through subplots and intrigue, following characters rising and falling in their roles and enduring an endless build up, the most anticipated battle finally arrived.

That is effectively the description of “The Long Night,” one of the most polarizing episodes in the final season from Game of Thrones aired last year. 

It is also a perfect descriptor for what many people across the country experienced in the immediate aftermath of the 2020 presidential election.

Politicos and engaged citizens alike altered schedules to count down to the close of polls on the East Coast on Tuesday night. They were eager with anticipation, and the actual results began tumbling in quickly. 

Obvious states were slotted into columns for President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden almost from the outset. Depending on the channel my surfing thumb landed on, states like New York or Alabama or Connecticut or Indiana were called before even a single precinct reported.

But the big, early prizes portended the back and forth to come. Virginia originally looked like a shock upset for Trump until Fairfax County swung it definitively into Biden’s camp several hours later. Ohio, which processed mail ballots for more than a week before Election Day, raised hopes among Biden supporters before methodically draining it away as day-of votes were tallied in favor of Trump.

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