Live Blog: Voting Out West, Terror in Brussels

By Mark Joyella 

It’s “Western Tuesday,” or at least, it was going to be Western Tuesday until the terror attacks in Brussels.

So instead of wall-to-wall politics tonight, we’ll have a mix of terror and the U.S. presidential race, which focuses on Utah, Arizona and Idaho.

Idaho will be strictly a Democratic contest, but voters in Utah and Arizona will vote in both Democratic and Republican races, and it’s likely results will be in late in the evening.

Here’s what we know so far about coverage:


Brian Williams has anchored breaking news coverage from 5-7 p.m. ET, and will be replaced by Chris Matthews for the two-hour block between 7 and 9 p.m. ET.

At 9 p.m. ET, Rachel Maddow anchors, and is joined at 10 p.m. by Williams for coverage of Brussels and the Western races.

Fox News:

Fox News will be live throughout the evening, with a balance of coverage on Brussels and politics. Bret Baier will lead coverage from New York, with Shepard Smith reporting from London, beginning in the 9 p.m. ET hour.

Bill Hemmer and Martha MacCallum will contribute to coverage from New York.

Bill O’Reilly is live at 8 p.m. ET, and Sean Hannity is live at 10.

Baier, Hemmer and MacCallum return for America’s Election Headquarters live from 11 p.m. ET to 1 a.m. ET, followed by three hours of continuing live coverage with Heather Childers and Eric Shawn.

Fox & Friends First will start Wednesday at 4 a.m. ET.


Anderson Cooper, who came in to anchor at 9 a.m. ET, leads live coverage from Washington between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET, and is joined by Wolf Blitzer from 10 p.m. through 2 a.m. ET. Coverage will be a mix of primary results and developments in Brussels.

8:15 p.m. ET: All Brussels At this hour, with the first returns from out West still two hours away, the cable networks are focused almost exclusively on Brussels. CNN is in a standard AC 360 branding until 10 p.m., Fox News has The O’Reilly Factor until America’s Election Headquarters takes over at 9, and MSNBC has Matthews interviewing John Kasich, but the topic is terror.

CeMTDUvUsAAfASq8:45 p.m. ET: Cruz Challenges Trump to One-on-One Debate In an interview with Bill O’Reilly, Ted Cruz challenged Donald Trump to join him on Fox News for a head-to-head debate (without John Kasich).

Politico reports O’Reilly promised to follow up on the idea:

“You know what? I’ve got an idea. Why don’t you ask Donald Trump to come here and defend himself. Donald is afraid to debate,” Cruz said.

O’Reilly asked if Cruz meant one-on-one (presumably sans Ohio Gov. John Kasich.)
“Bill, you can moderate. He wouldn’t argue that you’re an unfair moderator,” Cruz said.

“Yes, he would,” O’Reilly responded, laughing.

The host then pledged to “follow up” on the debate offer.

9:00 p.m. ET: Idaho Caucus MSNBC, with Maddow anchoring, now reports the Idaho Democratic race is too close to call. At 10 p.m., polls close in Arizona, which presents a big prize on both sides.

“We expect it to be a very very late night around here,” Maddow says.

9:10 p.m. ET: Smith in London On FNC, Shepard Smith reported live from London on European resources being put into action in the global investigation into the Brussels attacks. Smith is on a layover of sorts–he had hoped to make it to Brussels, but will be there by Wednesday morning when he will lead breaking news coverage for the network.

CeMdbBWVIAQekYC9:17 p.m. ET: Fox Business Is Live With competitor CNBC airing Shark Tank, Fox Business Network is in continuous live coverage of both the political contests, but also Brussels.

FBN is in special coverage from 8 p.m. ET through 12 a.m. ET with Cavuto: Coast-to-Coast. Shepard Smith will also appear throughout the evening live from London.

10:00 p.m. ET: Arizona Polls Close And now, on CNN, it is Western Tuesday. The CNN elections theme plays and “America’s Choice 2016” is the banner.

10:07 p.m. ET: Trump’s Tweet Did Donald Trump just threaten Ted Cruz’s wife? Here’s the tweet that many are talking about:

10:15 p.m. ET: Americans Wounded in Brussels Shep Smith reports at least 9 Americans are among the wounded in the terror attacks, including 3 Mormon missionaries from Utah.

10:20 p.m. ET: Did Trump Just Unveil His Nickname for Hillary Clinton? Donald Trump, who branded Ted Cruz “Lyin’ Ted” and Marco Rubio “Little Marco,” has been promising to unveil a nickname for Hillary Clinton. In an interview with Sean Hannity, Trump repeatedly called Clinton “Incompetent Hillary.”

He’s also now using it on Twitter:

11:00 p.m. ET: Late Night Getting Later It was expected results would run late tonight, but the networks are showing long, long lines in each of the Western states, suggesting this could go even longer than initially anticipated.

11:10 p.m. ET: Finally, Some Numbers Suddenly, we have roughly 40 percent of the vote in from Arizona. On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton has a big lead over Bernie Sanders. On the Republican side, Donald Trump leads.

11:20 p.m. ET: Trump Wins Arizona It’s our first projection of the night.

11:23 p.m. ET: Calls for Clinton in AZ The Associated Press and ABC News give Arizona to Hillary Clinton.

CeNBJPkUsAA3VJN11:38 p.m. ET: Sanders Speaks Just as Sanders speaks to supporters in San Diego, a speech carried live on CNN, Fox News Channel’s Chris Wallace asks guest why Sanders is staying in the race.

MSNBC is in a commercial break and misses the top of Sanders’ remarks, joining in progress. Fox News joins the speech as well. At 11:44 p.m. ET, CNN breaks away from Sanders to go to commercial.

CeNGEkpUIAE2mnI.jpg-small12:00 a.m. ET: Clinton Speaks Hillary Clinton addresses supporters in Seattle, saying “I’m very proud to have won Arizona tonight…this is a contest between fundamentally different views of our country, our values, and our future.”