TODAY IN ONE PARAGRAPH: The people demanded an off-off year election, and so they shall have it. New Jersey and Virginia wrap up statewide races, with Terry McAuliffe—barring a big mistake in the polling—poised to grab the Virginia's electorate's nod as "least awful gubernatorial candidate of 2013." The real drama is further down the ticket, where Democrats will try to make history with a clean sweep. Elsewhere, Chris Christie is looking for style points tonight in New Jersey, Bill de Blasio hopes to make it official as mayor of New York City, and a House race in Alabama will serve as an early bellwether in the battle between the Republican establishment and the tea party. Last but not least, Colorado voters are casting ballots on a $1 billion combined income-marijuana tax hike, while some of the state's northeastern counties are voting on a bid to break away and form their own state.
THE MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION TUESDAY SINCE 2012: Christie, de Blasio, and McAuliffe are heavy headliner favorites, but low voter turnout could make for some surprises when polls close tonight. (Katie Glueck, Politico)
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR TONIGHT: It's an election night, which means analysts will be busy parsing data and looking for sweeping trends about what the the tallies mean for America writ large. The chance of Virginia Dems making history and the significance of Chris Christie's margin of victory, analyzed in one article. (Sean Sullivan, WaPo)
THE INEVITABLE RISE OF CHRIS CHRISTIE: His de facto presidential campaign starts tomorrow. It's not hard to imagine him winning the White House. (Nate Cohn, TNR)
NJ'S EARLY BIRD TAKES FLIGHT: Did you know that 5,000 soldiers are among those being affected by cuts to the federal food-stamp program? Or that a new report condemns military doctors for abusing detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan? You would have known that at 5:41 this morning if you subscribed to NJ's Early Bird, a new morning assemblage of the best national security, defense, and foreign-policy coverage from around the web. Sign up here, and view today's issue here.
TOMORROW IN ONE PARAGRAPH: Kathleen Sebelius testifies about the Obamacare rollout again, this time before the Senate Finance Committee, at 10 a.m. in 215 Dirksen. Obama heads to Texas in the afternoon to meet volunteers helping to enroll people in Obamacare and attend a couple DSCC events. The Senate is in session; the House is out.
SEGREGATED SCHOOLS: Why American schools still have trouble with integration. (Eleanor Barkhorn, The Atlantic)
SECESSION: Nearly a dozen counties in northeastern Colorado are voting on a bid to become the 51st state. (Matt Berman, NJ)
WASHINGTON RUINED THE FUTURE: Two charts explain why Washington's policies are keeping unemployment high and growth low. (Matthew O'Brien, The Atlantic)
CRACK COCAINE: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has come clean, admitting he smoked crack cocaine "in one of my drunken stupors." (Cameron French, Reuters)
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ISN'T LIMITED TO HETEROSEXUALS: It happens with same-sex couples, too, despite studies still focusing exclusively on heterosexual relationships. (Maya Shwayder, The Atlantic)
LAST NIGHT'S LATE NIGHT FUNNIES IN UNDER 3 MINUTES: Toronto Mayor Tom Ford smoking crack is a joke that writes itself, and why Obamacare discriminates unfairly against men. (Reena Flores, NJ)