What to Watch Tuesday: Your Guide to Election Night Coverage and More

On TV this Tuesday: It’s Election Day, so go vote! And after you do, settle in for a long night of speculation and waiting that’ll make the American Idol finale seem like a study in instant gratification. Here’s our guide to the broadcast networks’ coverage of the event, as well as a few suggestions for other fare (like Covert Affairs and Sons of Anarchy) to keep you entertained until the returns are all in.

ABC | The alphabet net’s election coverage begins at 6:30 pm with a special edition of World News with Diane Sawyer. Then, George Stephanopoulos, Katie Couric and Barbara Walters (among others) will be on hand throughout the evening to analyze state-by-state results.

CBS | CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley kicks off the evening at 7 pm, joined by Face The Nation‘s Bob Schieffer, CBS This Morning‘s Norah O’Donnell, CBS News Political Director John Dickerson and others.

NBC | “Democracy Plaza” (AKA the Rockefeller Center skating rink tricked out like a giant American map) is the focal point of the Peacock network’s coverage, which starts at 7 pm and is led by Brian Williams with assists from Meet the Press‘ David Gregory, Today‘s Savannah Guthrie, special correspondent Tom Brokaw and others.

FOX | Fox News Channel’s Shepard Smith will anchor live coverage starting at 7 pm. He’ll be joined by Bill Hemmer, Martha MacCallum, Carl Cameron and others from the cable network.

MTV | The channel is partnering with the Power of 12 election campaign to broadcast live political newsbreaks – with reporters in New York, Chicago and Boston — throughout the evening.

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8 pm WWE Smackdown (Syfy) | If you’re sick of the political slugfest, why not tune into a real-ish one? This live two-hour wrestling event features appearances by Randy Orton, Sheamus, Alicia Fox and many others.

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9 pm Hard Time (National Geographic Channel) | A cellblock “mom” at Las Vegas’ Clark County Detention Center gets in trouble for having contraband in her cell.

PREVIEW | Ask Ausiello: Spoilers on Covert Affairs, Sons of Anarchy, Glee, Bones and More!

10 pm Covert Affairs (USA) | A crucial CIA asset disappears from protective custody, so Annie and Eyal work to find her – pronto.

10 pm Ink Master (Spike) | Ooh la la! The artists left in the competition create tattoos of pin-up girls.

10 pm Chopped (Food Network) | Four do-good foodies known for making their communities better places compete against each other.

10 pm Sons of Anarchy (FX) | Jax gets closer to the truth, but there are still obstacles in his way.

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11 pm The Daily Show With Jon Stewart (Comedy Central) | The fake news show puts on a very real, live broadcast of “Election Night 2012: This Ends Now.”

11:30 pm The Colbert Report (Comedy Central) | Just like The Daily Show, the Report will put out a live edition of “Election 2012: A Nation Votes, Ohio Decides; The Re-Presidenting of America: Who Will Replace Obama? ‘012!” Political blogger Andrew Sullivan will make a guest appearance.

Which of the above is must-see for you? Also, hit Comments to offer your own tune-in suggestions. 

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. jimbo says:

    CNN all the way. Wolf Blitzer, Anderson Cooper and their magic wand will rule ’em all.

  2. Bebe says:

    The Daily Show. The only way to get through tonight is with comedy, and I’m not talking about watching FOX news.

  3. leah says:

    I’m so glad there is a thunder game to watch tonight.

    • Betty says:

      I had a similar thought, except I will be watching the Bulls game tonight. Thank goodness they are playing! I can check on the results at half-time, or just check twitter!

  4. :-) says:

    Not a lot of choices, but I guess i will be watching the elecyion coverage.

  5. Templar says:

    I’m going with the Rizzoli and Isles marathon.

  6. Kam says:

    Thank goodness my dvr is full of things to watch! It will also be recording Covert Affairs and SOA!!! I care about the election but not enough to watch a full night of coverage. I’ll check into the coverage before heading to bed, though.

  7. K says:

    Sons of Anarchy! Can’t wait to see how Gemma approaches Jax’s disgusting proposal.

  8. I’ll follow the election on MSNBC until Covert Affairs comes on. If I get my wish and Obama wins early, I’ll watch something off the DVR queue.

  9. TiaGata says:

    I too am happy that my DVR has things for me to watch…but my station of choice to watch the election coverage will be Comedy Central – Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert…

    I am hopeful that we will be moving FORWARD…

  10. Jared says:

    I can’t wait till this election is OVER. I’m so tired of the preemptions.

  11. Me says:

    It is going to be sooooooooo nice when all the airwaves in Ohio are no longer filled with endless political ads!! Nov. 7th can’t get here soon enough!!

    BTW LOVE the name of Colbert’s show tonight!

  12. Mary says:

    Did my civic duty on the way to work this morning, Voted. I probably won’t be watching to much will check in the coverage on ABC before retiring. I am so glad this is over with today. I am praying it is a decisive win and it does not drag out for weeks. Here hoping Americans made the right decision.

  13. Ace says:

    Since I seriously doubt we will actually find out who the winner is tonight, I’ll be avoiding the TV entirely and going to the movies instead. (-:

  14. Monica says:

    I’ll be watching the coverage to make sure romney wins and then I’m going to watch covert affairs. I will check the newspaper in the morning to see who won.

  15. MGL says:

    Fox News. MSNBC or NBC now, is not even fair. So very biased.

  16. Angel says:

    TV election news fast until the morning where I will be surprised if a winner has been declared.

  17. Rebecca says:

    Cannot wait for this day to be over! I live in MASS so On top of all MA ads, I also get to view the NH ads. This madness needs to end.

    Side note, SOA is going to be bananas the rest of the season.

  18. Rain says:

    I made sure to leave a few things unwatched on my DVR to give myself some entertainment tonight. I never understand why they have a full night of coverage when it’s just the same stuff over and over. Save it for the news!

  19. Sheryl Baines says:

    Where is the channel information for Latinos and African American tv stations?

  20. Melanie says:

    Flashpoint on Ion. It is AMAZING!!

  21. Kim (@AD76) says:

    And for those of us who don’t want to watch election coverage there’s always The Big Bang Theory on TBS. Thank GOD.