Virtually looking over the edge of the electoral college, Joe Biden has pulled almost even with Donald Trump in the great state of Georgia in the Presidential race.
Coming out in dribbles of literally dozens of votes over the past few hours, the difference between the Democrat and Trump is 665 votes in favor of the incumbent, right now.
Burning well into the early morning hours on the East Coast, the latest results from the Peach State come in as Pennsylvania continues reporting ballots too. To put the math in the forefront, with 264 electoral votes already, according to the AP, the popular vote leading former Vice President would become the president-elect if he snags either the 20 votes from the Keystone State or Georgia’s 16 votes.
However, as the remaining 1500 Clayton County votes are still being tallied, it could take a while for the Peach State to be officially called for Biden, even if he pulls ahead soon.
For one thing, Georgia has a recount provision for the loser to request if the spread is 0.5% or less, which it just end up being at this point. That recount demand by an already fraud alleging Trump and the Republicans is almost a certainty. Add to that, the Trump campaign filed an “election integrity” lawsuit today that throws a potential spanner in the works.
Without Trump conceding in Georgia or overall, the whole process has the distinct possibility of shoving the mid-December certification of the vote of the electoral college down the calendar.
Hanging on to 214 electoral votes, incumbent Trump currently has a just slightly more than 18,000 vote lead in Pennsylvania – which he flipped from the Democrats in the 2016 race against Hillary Clinton. As about 160,000 votes are still out there, the ex-Celebrity Apprentice host has to win PA to have any hope of retaining the Presidency – and that seems increasingly unlikely as about 54,000 remaining mail-in ballots are counted from the City of Brotherly Love and surrounding Democratic leaning areas.
In an election taking place in the coronavirus pandemic, Biden has been consistently making big gains as more and more mail-in votes are counted in the state of his birth. With all that said, even as vote counting continues, all indications are that there’ll be nothing more significant coming from Pennsylvania until Friday morning.
Yet, this being America 2020, that could change.
On the flip side, the stakes in Georgia are all the greater as that state now also sits in the center of control of the Senate with both incumbent GOP Senators facing early 2012 runoff elections.
Neither Kelly Loeffler nor David Perdue got more than 50% of their respective vote over Democratic challengers Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff. Whether Trump pulls off a Hail Mary re-election or Biden takes the White House, those January 6 elections in Georgia will become a secondary mini-referendum of their own with massive funds and resources going sure to pour in.
Additionally, while the AP and Fox News called Arizona for Biden on Election Night, almost all other outlets are on the fence as the last vote counting goes on in the home of John McCain. Ballots do see Trump increasingly gaining on the ex-VP, trimming back Biden’s lead to a mere 46,000. Also, Trump leaning North Carolina and Alaska have yet to be called as has Biden leading Nevada.
Perhaps the Biden team will be privately proclaiming TGIF and saying their prayers on reaching that magic 270 number in the electoral college before the end of the day.
14th UPDATE, 7:01 PM: Votes counts in battleground states are trending Joe Biden’s way, but the former Vice President likely won’t be taking a victory lap tonight.
Once a solid Red State, Georgia has just become a statistical tie as more Biden votes from the suburbs of Atlanta has cut the former Celebrity Apprentice host’s lead to just over 1,900 votes – with more to come in the next few hours. Additionally, Trump is ahead by barely more than 40,000 votes in Pennsylvania, as more mail-in ballots were unveiled in Montgomery County. In Nevada, the bet is looking good for Biden, who is ahead by about 11,000 votes.
“This has been a methodical climb for Joe Biden, or if you want to call it, a methodical decline for the President of the United States,” noted CNN’s John King tonight of Trump’s crumbling count. “At the White House earlier tonight, he said that this was because of fraud and cheating,” King added. “It is because of math and democracy.”
Still, it aint’ over until the spread is insurmountable, and the Biden campaign isn’t planning on getting in front of its skis.
“I’m now hearing from multiple Biden campaign officials that we will not see the former Vice President deliver remarks here tonight,” correspondent Mike Memoli told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow tonight.
“They want to make sure that they have as full a picture of these returns as possible,” Memoli, who is often dubbed the “Biden Whisperer” in media circles for his more than a decade long coverage of the ex-VP. “This is a campaign that has never been quick to lurch on any news event or quick development,” the NBC News reporter added live form Wilmington, Delaware, where a stage has been set up since Election Day on November 3.
“It’s always been about slow and steady, and so simply seeing the margin flip from narrow Trump to narrow Biden in Pennsylvania would not be enough to rush him down here to speak to the country at this point,” Memoli concluded.
After millions and millions of Americans voted early or mailed in because of the dangers of the ravaging coronavirus pandemic, results are proving a bit slower than usual to emerge across the country.
With more buckets of votes coming in from Maricopa County, Biden’s lead in Arizona is currently trimmed a bit to around 46,000 over Trump. Another round of about 250,000 votes from the state are scheduled to be revealed on Friday morning, Arizona officials say. The AP and Fox New called the Grand Canyon State for Biden on Election Night. The likes of NBC, ABC, CNN and CBS, plus the New York Times have not yet put Arizona in the Biden silo.
Still, right now the AP and FNC have Biden with 264 Electoral votes and Trump with 214. Being that 270 is the number needed to win, the Democrat could go way over the top from Georgia’s 16 votes, Nevada’s 6 votes, or Pennsylvania’s 20 votes. North Carolina hasn’t been called yet either, but looks like it will go to the Republican.
In a sign of how much the Peach State has altered in recent years, not only could Biden win it but both GOP Senators are now facing run-offs against their Democratic challengers – which could flip the upper chamber.
13TH UPDATE, 3 PM: Georgia and Nevada are still counting ballots, but the 2020 Presidential election is looking like it will all come down to Pennsylvania by tonight.
A fact that seems to have partially pushed Donald Trump out of his-post election isolation to set an primetime address to the nation from the White House in the next hour. While Trump hasn’t been seen since his early morning remarks on November 4, Joe Biden has come out to speak both yesterday and today, with confidence of victory and urging Americans to remain calm
All over the country, the battleground states that are still counting ballots have seen the spread tighten in favor of the former Vice President – especially in the state he was born in.
“What’s happening now is having enough ballots counted to actually see who the winner is, right?” the Keystone State’s Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar said just now at a press conference in Harrisburg. “The further apart that is the easier it is to tell,” she added.
In northwestern Erie County, Biden has flipped the script and taken a small lead over Trump as more and more mail-in ballots are counted. This Blue resurrection could pick up steam fast and furious once more votes come in from Philadelphia.
“So, it’s very close in Pennsylvania, right?” Boockvar went on to say. “There’s no question …because it is a close race, it’s not quite clear yet who the winner is.”
Earlier in the day, the PA official told CNN that “we definitely could” know if ex-VP Biden or former Celebrity Apprentice host Trump would snare the state’s vital 20 electoral votes.
Having snatched the usually blue Commonwealth from Hillary Clinton in 2016 by 44,000 votes, Trump has to win Pennsylvania to win re-election this year.
Right now, popular vote winner Biden has 264 electoral votes to Trump’s 214, according to the AP. A total of 270 electoral votes is need to clinch the White House.
Boockvar said Thursday that there are 326,000 outstanding ballots in Pennsylvania. In this coronavirus pandemic race, Biden has been averaging around 77% of that mail-in vote. CNN’s John King estimated that if the ex-VP held on to 70% of the remaining ballots he would beat Trump by 40,000 votes and secure the White House.
With the ballot count visible online to everyone and a recent GOP lawsuit tossed by a PA court, no one has identified any of the “fraud” that Trump has alleged is occurring in the state.
Railing from the White House via social media and having lawsuits filed all over the nation, Trump is leading Biden by just over 90,000 votes in Pennsylvania.
12TH UPDATE, 9:41 AM: New results out of Nevada have Joe Biden closing the gap on capturing the Presidency – and it’s driving Donald Trump crazy.
As the nail-biter race narrows further, the latest numbers out of the home of Las Vegas have the former vice president ahead of Trump by approximately 11,000 votes, CNN, MSNBC and Fox News Channel are all reporting.
Those numbers saw the White House cloistered incumbent let loose a series of tweets this morning with claims of “Stop The Fraud!” As they have repeatedly over the past few days, the Jack Dorsey-run social media platform tagged POTUS for being potentially “misleading about an election or other civic process”:
STOP THE COUNT!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 5, 2020
Big legal win in Pennsylvania!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 5, 2020
All of the recent Biden claimed States will be legally challenged by us for Voter Fraud and State Election Fraud. Plenty of proof – just check out the Media. WE WILL WIN! America First!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 5, 2020
STOP THE FRAUD!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 5, 2020
This newest round of Nevada votes is from Clark County, the jurisdiction that includes the heavily unionized Sin City. Nevada was a key state for Biden and running mate Sen. Kamala Harris. Both members of the Democrats’ ticket visited the state and Vegas repeatedly over the campaign.
As ballot counting continues in Georgia (16 electoral votes) and the vital battleground state of Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes), the AP currently has popular vote-winning Biden with 264 electoral votes. Scattering lawsuits all over the nation to stop further vote counting, the former Celebrity Apprentice host has 214 electoral votes.
There has been some ballot counting stoppage in the Keystone State, but as the overwhelming pro-Biden mail-in votes are being tallied, Trump’s lead has slimmed to around 115,000 votes. That is without the full count in Philadelphia, which is 12% of the state’s population and expected to be strongly in the former veep’s favor. So far about 83% of the metropolis’ vote has been counted as the consequence of the coronavirus pandemic continues and more and more mail-in ballots are being scanned.
Regardless of the outcome in Pennsylvania, If Biden snags Nevada’s 6 electoral votes, he will hit the magic number of 270 and be the 46th POTUS. Trump has to win Pennsylvania to win, which is why his team has instigated a number of legal challenges. For instance, there are 29,000 ballots in Allegheny County that will not even be counted until tomorrow due to lawsuits from the GOP over various discrepancies.
In the Peach State, Trump has a 14,000-vote lead, but Biden has been chomping into that as more votes come in from the suburbs of Atlanta. While AP and Fox News called Arizona for Biden on Election Night, there is still votes being counted there and the former VP’s lead has been trimmed to around 60,000.
Which is a long way of saying that if you have any nails left to bite over the presidential election results, Nevada is betting you have more, if you know what we mean?
As well as wall-to-wall coverage on the cable newsers, the broadcast networks are planning for more primetime specials. NBC has just announced a 9-11 PM ET Decision 2020 special with Lester Holt and Savannah Guthrie anchoring. Chuck Todd, Andrea Mitchell and Kasie Hunt will be joining Holt and Guthrie. Like they did on November 4, ABC and CBS will surely be following with similar specials soon too.
11TH UPDATE, NOV 4, 12:51 PM: The election of 2020 is starting to look a lot like the election of 2000.
Keeping the promise that the incumbent made in his speech early this morning, Donald Trump’s campaign has just filed with the Supreme Court to put the brakes on the ongoing vote count in Pennsylvania.
“Given last night’s results, the vote in Pennsylvania may well determine the next President of the United States,” the motion from the re-election effort says (READ IT HERE).
“And this Court, not the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, should have the final say on the relevant and dispositive legal questions, the filing adds. “The interests of justice and judicial economy strongly favor its participation in these proceedings,” it goes on to say of the nation’s highest court and it newly minted conservative majority
“Trump’s Campaign is moving to intervene in the existing Supreme Court litigation over the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s unlawful extension of the mail-in ballot receipt deadline,” said Trump 2020 Deputy Campaign Manager Justin Clark on Wednesday as the filing occurred. “The law is on President Trump’s side: as the Eighth Circuit just said, to change the ballot receipt deadline is in fact a change of the time, place, and manner of the election—and only a state legislature or the United States Congress can do that under the Constitution.”
This comes without any evidence or even true accusations that the Pennsylvania court is stained. In fact, visible to anyone who wants to go online and watch, the Keystone State ballot count currently has the former Celebrity Apprentice host ahead ironically. Having said that, with a win in Wisconsin earlier today, the mail-in ballots do seem to be trending Joe Biden’s way – which could prove almost enough to put the former VP over the top of the 270 electoral votes needed for victory.
As votes in Nevada and Michigan are also being counted and look good for Biden, the move to the Supreme Court sure looks like a move of desperation for the incumbent. The Trump campaign has also linked itself to a lawsuit by the Pennsylvania Republican Party over tossing out ballots that arrive more than three days after the election. Last week, the state’s Supreme Court gave such ballots the green light as long as they were postmarked by November 3.
10TH UPDATE, 11:29 PM: The Associated Press has now also called the great state of Wisconsin for Joe Biden.
That moves the former VP’s electoral count up to 248 to Donald Trump’s 214. Of course, after a long nail-biting night, there are still several states counting ballots. Right now, both candidates have a plausible route to victory, with things looking a little better for Biden.
Team Trump has already declared it wants a recount in the Badger State.
9TH UPDATE, 11:03 PM: CNN just called Wisconsin for Joe Biden, putting the Democratic nominee closer to an electoral college victory over Donald Trump.
Trump and his campaign say that they will request a recount in the state, where Biden has a lead of about 20,000 votes. So far, AP has not officially proclaimed Wisconsin for the ex-veep.
Meanwhile, with karma galore, Al Gore, who lost a recount and court battle over Florida’s electoral votes and the 2000 election, went on Twitter proclaiming every vote needs to be counted:
In America, no one person or political party can alter the unassailable principle that the rule of law prevails. Every vote must be counted in this election, and the will of the American people will determine the outcome. We must remain calm. Democracy will win the day.
— Al Gore (@algore) November 4, 2020
Right now, with Michigan in flux, Biden holds leads in Nevada and Arizona, but trails Trump in Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Georgia.
The Trump campaign also said that it filed a lawsuit in Michigan to halt vote counting until they can gain access to numerous locations to observe the opening of ballots and the counting process.
8TH UPDATE, 10:12 AM PT: As election officials in Wisconsin indicated today that they were finished counting ballots, with Joe Biden holding a slim lead, Donald Trump’s campaign said that they would request a recount.
Campaign manager Bill Stepien said in a statement, “Despite ridiculous public polling used as suppression tactic, Wisconsin has been a razor thin race as we always knew it would be. There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results. The president is well within his threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so.”
A recount raises the possibility of a protracted post-Election Day challenge, perhaps something not seen since the 2000 presidential race. But last cycle, Green Party candidate Jill Stein initially requested a recount, and it resulted in a net gain of 131 votes for Trump in the state.
7TH UPDATE, 5 AM PT: Joe Biden has taken a slim lead in his bid to flip the key battle state of Wisconsin. As much as 3% of votes have yet to be counted, but commentators are saying the margin, around 30k, will be tough to overturn for Donald Trump. Ben Wikler, chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, tweeted that “there’s no realistic path for Trump to pull ahead” in the state, though the social media platform since has labeled the tweet as “misleading” due to its policy on not allowing candidates or officials to declare results before the official call.
6TH UPDATE, 1:30 AM PT:The Associated Press is calling Arizona for Biden, with the former VP securing roughly 52% of the vote to flip the state and its 11 electoral votes away from the Republicans. If verified, that will be only the second time the Democrats have won in Arizona since 1948.
5TH UPDATE, 11:59 PM PT: The electoral numbers are all over the place, the candidates have spoken in speeches that were neither really victory nor concession remarks and no determination yet on who controls the Senate late tonight.
Welcome to Election night 2020.
As Donald Trump’s team rages over Fox News calling Arizona for Joe Biden, pivotal states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia are in flux as votes are still being counted. At this point, the best we can say is we will update when those ballots are finalized, whether that be Wednesday or later.
4TH UPDATE, 9:10 PM PT: Donald Trump is projected to win Ohio, NBC News projects, dashing hopes for Democrats that it could have been a Joe Biden pickup.
Meanwhile, Fox News projected that Texas would go to Trump, after hopes that the former VP had a shot at scoring an upset. As well as continuing the Democrats’ winning streak in Minnesota, Biden was the projected victor in Virginia, a state that has turned more solidly blue in recent cycles after being a swing state.
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) November 4, 2020
James Carville appeared on MSNBC and was asked about his prediction that Biden would have the race wrapped up by 10 PM ET. “Every Democrat put the razor blades and Ambien back in the medicine cabinet. We are going to be fine,” he said. While acknowledging he was wrong about the Latino vote in Florida, he was confident of Biden’s prospects in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.
With the Keystone State, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin still not called, the ex-veep is expected to make public remarks soon-ish. No word if Trump will be speaking tonight.
3RD UPDATE, 8:31 PM PT: Fox News projected Joe Biden would win Arizona, a pickup of a state that Donald Trump won four years ago.
Jason Miller, a senior adviser for the Trump campaign, tweeted, “WAY too soon to be calling Arizona…way too soon. We believe over 2/3 of those outstanding Election Day voters are going to be for Trump. Can’t believe Fox was so anxious to pull the trigger here after taking so long to call Florida. Wow.”
Fox News called Florida earlier in the evening but other networks have not called it yet.
On ABC News, George Stephanopoulos said that although it was still early to establish how the results will ultimately play, said, “This is looking a little bit right now like a replay of 2016,” albeit the network has yet to call Arizona for Biden. Nate Silver, the Fivethirtyeight election expert, had moved Trump’s chances of winning to 33 percent, from 10 percent at the start of the day.
Grinding into the early morning on the East Coast, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin are still counting votes. In a reality that may take days, both campaigns seem resigned to no one claiming victory tonight and looking like a potentially protracted battle that has shades of the 2000 race between Al Gore and George W Bush.
2ND UPDATE, 8:02 PM PT: Joe Biden was the projected winner of California, which comes as no surprise, on an evening that seems to have dashed Democratic hopes of a blue wave.
“There’s a lot of math to go,” MSNBC’s Brian Williams said after the call of the Golden State and Oregon and Washington.
Network anchors were starting to talk about no winner being known on Tuesday night and instead a long wait until states count the vote.
“What we are getting is people are sticking to their party lines for the most part,” said Joy Reid.
UPDATE, 6:40 PM PT: Democrats will retain control of the House of Representatives and expand their majority by at least five seats, Fox News’ Decision Desk projected.
The projection was made at 9:18 PM ET.
Meanwhile, Mitch McConnell easily won reelection to another term in the Senate, but the question was whether he would return as majority leader.
Democrats saw their first Senate seat slip of the night, as John Hickenlooper defeated Cory Gardner.
So far, network coverage of the results has been a big deep dive on data.
On Fox News, Chris Wallace talked of Trump’s lead in Florida and Biden’s underperformance among Hispanics. He thinks that the president’s warning about socialism resonated with Cuban Americans.
“I think that had an impact,” Wallace said. “I think just, you know, in the end, some people just feel more comfortable with Donald Trump as the leader over the next four years than with Joe Biden.”
PREVIOUSLY, 4:11 PM PT: The time has finally arrived, as the first polls closed in ket swing states that will decide whether Donald Trump is reelected or ousted in favor of Joe Biden.
Polls closed at 7 PM ET in Georgia and the eastern part of Florida, and North Carolina’s cutoff was scheduled for 7:30 PM ET, although some precincts had extended hours.
CNN called Indiana, where polls closed at 6 PM ET, for Trump, but that was expected.
Earlier, CNN and other outlets revealed the results of exit poll information that revealed what issues were most important to voters, but it was difficult to discern whether the data was more favorable to Trump or Biden.
Statistical guru Nate Silver cautioned, “Nothing I’ve seen or heard about the exit polls give me confidence that they’ve figured out how to balance the different types of votes that are coming in. Lots of weird, somewhat incongruous results based on what’s been reported. I would ignore.”
Networks were cautioning viewers not to read too much into the early returns, given the potential disparity in those who voted early or by mail or who voted in person. That was the case with Kentucky, which initially showed a Biden lead but it flipped before the final results were in. Most of the networks have been presenting results in context of the expected vote, rather than precincts reporting as they have done in previous cycles.
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