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Bright yellow signs guide voters to their polling places. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

You made it, friends. Election Day is here.

If you’re still cramming, wow, get your life together. Just kidding! It’s a lot to try to digest. Our site has been taking a lot of traffic. People are especially interested in our ultimate Election Guide for some last-minute prep on the local measures and races.

Our reporters plan to fan out across the county to speak with voters about the issues and candidates motivating them to head to the polls, so check our website throughout the day for those dispatches.

Here are some of the dynamics we’ll be keeping an eye on as election results roll in.

A Night for Newcomers?

On both sides of the aisle, up and down the ballot, Tuesday’s election features a big slate of candidates who have never held public office.

Some, like Republican John Cox in the governor’s race, Democrat Mike Levin in the 49th Congressional District and Democrat Vivian Moreno in San Diego City Council District 8, are running in open races where they’re taking on opponents who’ve held office before.

Others, like Democrats Jen Campbell, Tommy Hough and Monica Montgomery, are taking on City Council incumbents – a breed that rarely loses.

Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar is taking on an incumbent in Rep. Duncan Hunter, and Hunter is still the heavy favorite to win despite being under federal indictment.

On Monday, The Atlantic declared Hunter’s campaign “the most anti-Muslim campaign in the country,” yet Campa-Najjar (who’s not Muslim, btw) still expressed skepticism about his chances and, at the end of the article, had to catch himself from suggesting he might lose.

Will a Council Incumbent Fall?

City Council incumbents in San Diego don’t lose. They just don’t.

And yet at least two of them are facing serious challenges from first-time candidates.

City Councilwoman Myrtle Cole – the Council president – is facing her former staffer, Monica Montgomery, in a race that has ignited intense passion from the southeastern San Diego community.

Over in District 2, Democrats are hoping anti-Trump anger can buoy Jen Campbell to a win over City Councilwoman Lorie Zapf.

And if Democratic turnout is intense enough across the city, could it even give Tommy Hough a chance to upset City Councilman Chris Cate in District 6?

It’s crazy enough to think any City Council incumbent could go down. But there’s a non-zero chance more than one could fall on Tuesday.

Will the Issue That Never Dies, Die?

What would San Diego do if it didn’t have a stadium to fret over?

We might find out if Measure E or Measure G passes. (If they both pass, the measure with the most votes wins.)

But there’s still the possibility that neither will win, and that would mean more years of fighting over the best possible use of land and resources in the center of the city.

Don’t worry, though. If voters do settle the issue on Tuesday, we’ll still have a convention center and vacation rentals to squabble over for the rest of our lives.

How Much Does North County Change?

There’s the pivotal mayor’s race in Carlsbad and the 49th Congressional District seat that U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa has held for so long. A Democrat will take the 76th Assembly District — long held by Republican Rocky Chavez.

Is North County blue?

And now, in that (maybe-it’s-North County?) area, Democrat Sunday Gover and her allies are giving Republican Assemblyman Brian Maienschein a serious run in the Rancho Santa Fe, Rancho Bernardo, Scripps Ranch, Mira Mesa, Carmel Valley 77th Assembly District he knows so well. Democrats are pouring in funds.

Gover is hitting hard. She is running ads on Facebook hammering Maienschein for his role in the city of San Diego’s pension scandal. It’s a risky move. Whatever Maienschein is guilty of, so is Democratic Congressman Scott Peters, who’s considering a run for mayor. And same is true of Toni Atkins, the Democratic president of the state Senate.

Awkward.

Oh, You Thought We Were Done Talking About the Election?

The Colorado River Crisis You’ve Never Heard of

In this week’s Environment Report, Ry Rivard examines an important question about the future of western states’ water supplies that few people know about or understand: “How will bureaucrats, lawmakers and the courts deal with the rights of Native American tribes that have claims to water from the Colorado River?”

Several states rely on Colorado River water, but tribes have senior claims to the water that they’re hoping to eventually exercise. Rivard breaks down why they can’t claim those rights all at once, and what might happen if they did start to claim more water.

In Other News

The Morning Report was written by Sara Libby, and edited by Scott Lewis.

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