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Black Smoke Rises: No New Pope on First Ballot

The Papal Conclave Day One
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Tuesday evening, a plume of black smoke rose out of the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, signifying that the first round of balloting to elect a new pope had passed without any nominee receiving the necessary two-thirds majority.

If you were betting on a first-ballot election (and you definitely shouldn’t have been), you’re out of luck. This is normal and was the expected result; no new pope has been elected on the first ballot in centuries, and all recent elections have taken at least three tries.

Another round of voting will take place Wednesday morning; if that is unsuccessful, then a third ballot will be held that evening. The ballots will continue until a candidate receives the required two-thirds majority.

Cardinal Angelo Scola still remains the leader in most betting markets, but he is no sure thing. For a look at the top candidates, click here.

[CNN]

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