Here in California, with no U.S. Senate seat on the ballot, the suspense is over smaller stakes. Turnout might hit a record low, dropping below 50 percent for the first time in the state's history.
At the top of the ticket, Gov. Jerry Brown is expected to beat Republican challenger Neel Kashkari by a wide margin to win an unprecedented fourth term. Democrats hold sizable leads in the races for lieutenant governor, controller, treasurer, attorney general and secretary of state. Down the ballot, however, the less-visible but hard-fought nonpartisan race between Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and challenger Marshall Tuck is a dead heat.
A few California House seats might come down to the wire as well, including Sacramento County's 7th District, where freshman Democrat Ami Bera has fought to fend off a challenge from Republican former Rep. Doug Ose in what has become one of the nation's costliest congressional contests. This and a few other races might narrow, though not overcome, Democrats' margin in the state's House delegation.