When Do Polls Open And Close?

Poll Closing Times

Ballotpedia has a complete guide for opening and closing times for every state in the country.

And DailyKos has a guide of what to watch and when to watch for it as polls close, which starts at those portions of Kentucky and Indiana where the closing time is governed by Eastern Time, although it is generally the case that networks tend not to report anything out of those states while voting is still going on in the western parts of those states. The game then picks up at 7pm Eastern and continues until well past Midnight, when Alaska finally closes.

As they say in Chicago, vote early and vote often!

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Just Me says:

    Don’t forget the panhandle of Florida is on central time and closes an hour later than the rest of the state.

    Also, I am surprised at how many states shut polls down at 6pm. In the age of long commutes I suspect it makes it hard to vote.

  2. Yea I don’t get the 6pm closing time at all. Here in Virginia its 7pm and, even with that time, in 2012 there were lines outside polling places in Fairfax County when the polls closed that kept precincts open until close to 9pm (because the rule here is that if you’re in line when the polls close, you get to vote).

    In New Jersey where I grew up, its a 6am to 8pm schedule

  3. John Peabody says:

    Federal Employee guideliines say (roughly) that you only get free time to vote if the polls close less than three hours before or after your quitting time. Maybe there are some sweet agreements that let people take off at 3:00. Who knows?

  4. grumpy realist says:

    I was surprised there weren’t more people in line when I went to vote this morning (Illinois). I think all the diehards had already shown up at 6 AM. (I usually do and there’s usually a pretty long line.)