On Tuesday, gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) futures for December delivery increased $31.80 to settle at $1,715 per ounce, while silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) jumped 91 cents to close at $32.03.

Both precious metals climbed higher and outperformed the broad market as Americans headed to the polls to vote in the presidential and congressional elections. The outperformance may be accredited to President Obama’s likelihood of being re-elected as the next president, which would avoid any turbulence with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Challenger Mitt Romney is on record with saying that he would replace Bernanke if elected, raising concerns about loose monetary policy.

Christopher Vecchio, currency analyst at DailyFX, says, “Generally speaking, polls have been favorable to the current President, and with the stock market up some 70 percent or so during Obama’s tenure – which has predicted all but two elections in advanced democratic economies since the financial crisis of 2007 – an Obama victory is expected.”

As the chart below shows, silver was the best performing asset in the market on Tuesday, with gold not too far behind.

In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) gained 1.70 percent, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) jumped 2.60 percent. Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) and Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) increased 3.50 percent and 1.50 percent, respectively. Silver names such as First Majestic Silver (NYSE:AG) and Silver Wheaton (NYSE:SLW) both climbed more than 1 percent higher.

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Disclosure: Long EXK, AG, HL, PHYS