You know which presidential candidate will be in the White House for the next four years.
What you won't know for two weeks or more is who emerged victorious in the race for Sacramento City Council districts 2 and 4.
In District 2, is it former Councilman Rob Kerth? Or developer Allen Warren?
In District 4, did biotech firm manager Steve Hansen get the nod? Or architect Joe Yee?
The same goes for Sacramento's District 7 of the U.S. House of Representatives: Candidate Ami Bera? Or Rep. Dan Lungren?
Don't hold your breath.
Outcomes of some key, tight races likely won't be known until Sacramento County elections workers plow through more than 193,000 outstanding ballots and issue a series of updates over the next two weeks.
The next update is due Friday at 3 p.m.
Turns out, the 2012 general presidential election opened the floodgates to a tidal wave of vote-by-mail ballots.
In all, 59 percent of the county's 698,899 registered voters asked for vote-by-mail ballots. And an astonishing 75,000 of these weren't mailed to county offices or deposited at one of the county's 14 drop-off sites.
Instead, voters carried them into polling places on Election Day. Some even filled them out at the precincts, including some opting to do so in the privacy of a voting booth.
"They enjoy getting it at home and marking it," Registrar Jill LaVine theorized. "And they like the idea of putting it in the ballot box. It's the best of both worlds."
Even so, the volume of vote-by-mail ballots dropped off at the county's collection sites soared, from 5,000 in the June primary to 27,000 for the general election, LaVine said.
The pattern of heavy vote-by-mail balloting has been growing statewide, rising 15 percent in the last two years, according to data from the California secretary of state's office.
Flash-forward to Wednesday the day after the election.
LaVine described what came next, starting with the enormous volume of bags that arrived overnight from the county's 470 polling places carrying the vote-by-mail ballots.
There would be no votes counted Wednesday, she said. Instead, scores of workers would begin pulling ballots out of the bags, putting them into trays for sorting.
The signatures on the vote-by-mail ballots had to be verified, then sorted by precinct. Ballots would be opened, unfolded and inspected for peanut butter and jelly or coffee stains and the like.
"I know what some voters had for breakfast," LaVine quipped.
The actual count resumes at 8 a.m. today.
Among the closest races in the region were two Sacramento City Council contests.
In the race for District 4 a high-profile seat representing Land Park, the Central City and the River Oaks section of South Natomas just 28 votes separated the candidates out of more than 16,000 ballots counted so far. The latest, limited data, had Hansen leading Yee, 49.99 percent to 49.79 percent.
And in north Sacramento, the margin between Kerth and Warren in District 2 had slimmed to 63 votes, with nearly 8,000 ballots counted.
Kerth had held a double-digit lead in early returns but saw that advantage dwindle to 50.2 percent to 49.4 percent by early Wednesday.
"We put up a strong challenge, and I feel like it's not over yet," Warren said.
Uncertainty also prevailed in the Natomas Unified School District, where as of Wednesday just a few hundred votes separated some of the four candidates vying for three seats on the board.
In the Rio Linda-Elverta water district, where nothing seems to go smoothly, the top four vote-getters for three open seats were separated Wednesday by fewer than 300 votes.
Why aren't these numbers good enough to assess candidate strength?
Simple. As of Wednesday, Sacramento County elections officials had processed and tallied a total of 328,516 votes.
That's far short of the more than 500,000 ballots expected to be part of the final count.
The county, as a legal matter, has until Dec. 4 to finish processing ballots.
"Hang on, we'll get there," LaVine said. "We always do."