EXPLAINER: Why does The Associated Press call US elections?

Why has The Associated Press tallied votes and declared winners in U.S. elections since the middle of the 19th century? Because the Founding Fathers didn’t establish a national clearinghouse for counting the vote, and the states all do it a little differently.

So every U.S. election night, The Associated Press counts the nation’s votes, tallying millions of ballots and determining which candidates have won their races. It’s been done that way since 1848, when the AP declared the election of Zachary Taylor as president.

Here’s the rundown on the AP’s role in election race calling:

HOW DID THE AP GET THIS JOB?

Basically, no

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