Biden back as favourite after Trump claims he’s ‘already won’ – LIVE

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he fate of the US presidency is hanging in the balance as Donald Trump and Joe Biden fight it out for battleground states that could prove crucial in determining who wins the White House.

The two candidates split territory across the US after polls closed on Tuesday night, with neither candidate securing the 270 electoral college votes needed for victory. Counting is still under way in key battleground states including Pennsylvania and Georgia, where Mr Biden hopes to make up ground.

Mr Biden was back as clear favourite in online betting markets. Mr Trump kept several states, including Texas, Iowa and Ohio, but Mr Biden picked off other key areas, including New Hampshire and Minnesota. Florida, the most fiercely contested battleground on the map, went to Mr Trump. 

Live updates

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Biden just one battleground state away

Joe Biden is just one battleground state away from securing enough electoral college votes to achieve what he called a ‘victory for the American people’.

After securing victories in Wisconsin and Michigan, the Democrat had 264 electoral college votes and needed to secure one of Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina or his home state Pennsylvania to reach the necessary 270 to claim the country’s top position.

Mr Trump, however, must win all four states, and has begun legal action in three of them to either stop the counting of votes or insist his team be provided greater access to scrutinise the process.

The president had earlier falsely claimed victory and threatened to go to the US Supreme Court, as he warned a “fraud on the American nation” was being carried out over the way votes were being counted.

Mr Biden’s campaign said the president’s extraordinary comments, made in the White House against a backdrop of US flags, were a “naked attempt to take away the democratic rights of American citizens”. 

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Kamala Harris: Lawfully cast ballots being counted, a cornerstone of American democracy

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The US election has scrambled seats in the House and the Senate but ultimately has left Congress much like it began, deeply split as voters resisted big changes despite the heated presidential race.

It is an outcome that dampens Democratic demands for a bold new agenda, emboldens Republicans, and almost ensures partisan gridlock regardless of who wins the presidency. 

Or perhaps, as some say, it provides a rare opening for modest across-the-aisle cooperation.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi was on track to keep control of the Democratic House, but saw her majority shrinking and her leadership called into question.

Control of the Senate tilted Republicans’ way as they fended off an onslaught of energised challengers, though a few races remained undecided.

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Still too close to call. So what happens next?

Delays and potential legal battles are looming over the US presidential election, with the result still too close to call.

The contest between Donald Trump and Joe Biden may remain on a knife-edge for days, with both men still in with a chance of winning enough Electoral College votes from the undeclared states to secure the presidency.

Key results are expected in coming hours in Georgia, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, while other swing states are more likely to take several days to declare.

A large part of the delay can be attributed to the Covid-19 pandemic, which has killed more than 230,000 people in the US.

Millions of people voted by post amid the pandemic, leading to delays due to the volume of ballots, how they are counted and the time taken to deliver them.

Mr Trump has already claimed victory in Pennsylvania, though the result is still some way off being officially declared, and has mounted legal action in the battleground states of Georgia, Pennsylvania and Michigan.

His Democratic challenger, meanwhile, has won Michigan and the critical Midwest state of Wisconsin. 

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Trump backers demand Michigan vote centre ‘stop the count’

Dozens of supporters of President Donald Trump chanting “Stop the count!” descended on a vote-tallying centre in Detroit.

It came as Americans on both political sides vented their anger and frustration over the undecided presidential contest at protests around the country

The Detroit protests started soon before The Associated Press declared Democratic candidate Joe Biden had won Michigan.

Video shot by local media showed angry people gathered outside the TCF Centre and inside the lobby, with police officers lined up to keep them from entering the counting area. 

They chanted “Stop the count!” and “Stop the vote!”

In New York City, by contrast, thousands marched past boarded-up luxury stores on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue calling for every vote to be tallied.

The march was largely peaceful, though police made at least 20 arrests after a smaller, rowdier group began protesting police misconduct.

In Chicago, protesters demanding a complete count marched through downtown and along a street across the river from Trump Tower. 

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Michigan’s secretary of state has branded a lawsuit by U.S. President Donald Trump seeking to halt counting of votes as “frivolous.”

Jocelyn Benson said all valid ballots cast in the state had been tabulated securely and acccurately.

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The United States has set another record for daily confirmed coronavirus cases as states around the country posted all-time highs, underscoring the vexing issue that confronts the winner of the presidential race.

The surging cases and hospitalisations reflect the challenge that either President Donald Trump or former Vice President Joe Biden will face in the coming months over the pandemic, with winter and the holidays approaching.

Daily new confirmed coronavirus cases in the US have surged 45 per cent over the past two weeks, to a record 7-day average of 86,352, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Deaths are also on the rise, up 15 percent to an average of 846 deaths every day.

The total U.S. death toll is already more than 232,000, and total confirmed US cases have surpassed 9 million. Those are the highest totals in the world, and new infections are increasing in nearly every state.

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Joe Biden has won Michigan, pushing him closer to 270 Electoral College votes and narrowing President Donald Trump’s possible path to reelection.

Only a handful of battleground states remain uncalled including Georgia, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. 

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Rudy Giuliani: Public taken for “fools” over “crooked” vote count in Philadelphia

Donald Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani was emotional as he slammed officials conducting the count in Philadelphia as “crooked”.

Giuliani claimed the president’s campaign team was barred from observing votes being counted and said: “Do you think we’re stupid? Do you think we’re fools?”

He raged at a press conference: “Not a single Republican has been able to look at any one of these mail ballots.  

“They could be from Mars, as far as we are concerned. Joe Biden could have voted 50 times, as far as we know.”

Giuliani claimed – without proof – that that state has a reputation for voter fraud and he said he would look at “how many dead people voted here”.

“This is a concerted effort of the crooks who run the Democratic Party,” he said.

“We’re not going to let them get away with it. They’re not going to steal this election. This election will be decided by the people.”

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Trump taking legal action in crucial states that could hand Biden the White House