US Election 2020: Biden wins Michigan and Wisconsin

BREAKING NEWS: Biden wins Michigan and Wisconsin and says he’s ‘confident’ he’ll take White House as Trump sues to halt the count and MAGA supporters storm Detroit counting hall in protest

  • Joe Biden has won Wisconsin and Michigan which gives him 264 electoral college votes; he now needs 6 more to claim White House victory 
  • The states still in play are Nevada, North Carolina, Georgia and Pennsylvania, all of which are close races 
  • As his chances at victory shrank on Wednesday, Trump started crying election fraud and demanding recounts
  • His campaign is demanding a recount in Wisconsin and they have filed a lawsuit to demand that vote counting be halted in Michigan and Pennsylvania 
  • The only way he can win now without any recounts or challenges is by sweeping the four remaining states 
  • Biden on Wednesday afternoon said he felt ‘good’ about his chances in Pennsylvania
  • Vote counting there will continue until Friday with a significant number of mail-in votes yet to be counted  

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Joe Biden all but declared election victory on Wednesday afternoon after winning Wisconsin and Michigan as President Trump cried fraud and desperately scrambled to undermine the results.   

CNN has called Michigan for Biden, giving him another 16 electoral college votes which gives him 264 – just 6 away from the 270 he need to claims the White House. He won by some 67,000 votes. 

Nevada, North Carolina, Georgia and Pennsylvania all remain in play.

Trump can now only win if he takes them all. He is ahead by 76,000 votes in North Carolina, 67,000 votes in Georgia and 319,377 in Pennsylvania. He needs to win all three plus Nevada – where Biden is leading by 8,000 votes – to win. Biden only needs Nevada now or any of the others.   

On Wednesday afternoon, as his chances at victory shrank, Trump campaign claimed victory in Pennsylvania despite there being 15 percent of the vote left to to count and despite the fact that officials have until Friday to do it. He also demanded a recount in Wisconsin and filed lawsuits in Michigan and Pennsylvania to halt counting, claiming his people have not been allowed to oversee the process and ensure it is being carried out fairly. 

He has claimed his own victories in Pennsylvania, Georgia, North Carolina and Michigan, claiming ‘there was a large number of secretly dumped ballots’. 

Biden at a press conference on Wednesday, was unperturbed by Trump’s last-ditch efforts to snatch back the likelihood of a second term. 

‘After a long night of counting it’s clear we are winning enough states to win the presidency. I am not here to declare that we won but I am here to report that when the count is finished we believe we will be the winners.  

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Joe Biden on Wednesday afternoon all but claimed election victory as he said he was 'confident' he would win the White House after taking Michigan and Wisconsin. He is pictured with his running mate Kamala Harris by his side

Joe Biden on Wednesday afternoon all but claimed election victory as he said he was ‘confident’ he would win the White House after taking Michigan and Wisconsin. He is pictured with his running mate Kamala Harris by his side 

  

Donald Trump on Wednesday at 2.30am, declaring election victory despite many of the votes still being counted. He has vowed to go to the Supreme Court to challenge what he is calling a 'fraud' outcome so far

Donald Trump on Wednesday at 2.30am, declaring election victory despite many of the votes still being counted. He has vowed to go to the Supreme Court to challenge what he is calling a ‘fraud’ outcome so far 

A breakdown of the electoral college shows how much each state is worth. This was the situation before the first votes started coming in. There have not yet been any major surprises. Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan are the key swing states and Trump won Ohio and Florida

Poll challengers in Detroit are being kept from a counting center after descending there en masse chanting 'stop the votes!' as Trump claimed they were being counted unfairly

Poll challengers in Detroit are being kept from a counting center after descending there en masse chanting ‘stop the votes!’ as Trump claimed they were being counted unfairly

Detroit police escort a poll challenger out after he refused to leave, due to room capacity, at the TCF Center after Election Day in Detroit, Michigan U.S., November 4, 2020

Detroit police escort a poll challenger out after he refused to leave, due to room capacity, at the TCF Center after Election Day in Detroit, Michigan U.S., November 4, 2020

STATES STILL IN PLAY

NORTH CAROLINA 

TRUMP 50.09% 

BIDEN  49.69% 

GEORGIA 

TRUMP 50.08%

BIDEN 48.7%

NEVADA

TRUMP 49.33%

BIDEN 48.69%

PENNSYLVANIA 

TRUMP 52%

BIDEN 46.85%  

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‘We have won Wisconsin by 20,000 votes. In Michigan, we lead by over 35,000 votes and its growing. We have a substantially bigger margin than trump won Michigan in 2016. 

‘Michigan will complete its  vote soon. I feel very good about Pennsylvania. Virtually all remaining ballots to be counted are cast by mail and we’ve been winning 78% of the votes by mail in PA. 

‘We flipped Arizona and the 2nd district in Nebraska. We won the majority of the American people and every indication is that the majority will grow. 

‘Senator Harris and I are on track to win more votes than any ticket in the history of this country – over 70million votes. I’m very proud of our campaign,’ he said. 

‘Only three presidential campaigns in the past have defeated the incumbent president. When it’s finished, God willing, we’ll be the fourth. This is a major achievement.’

Biden said that after the election is resolved, he would help ‘lower the temperature’ and united the country, though he said he wasn’t naive to how ‘deep and hard the opposing views are.’

‘To make progress we have to stop treating our opponents as enemies, we are not enemies,’ Biden said.

‘What brings us together as Americans is so much stronger than anything that can tear us apart.’

At the end of his speech he stated, ‘Now, every vote must be counted.

‘No one is going to take our democracy away from us – not now, not ever,’ he added, a statement clearly aimed at Trump. 

The count is ongoing but in Detroit, angry crowds are demanding that it stop. 

They are being stopped from entering the building – where volunteers are racing to tally up the votes – by police. 

Volunteers have started boarding up windows in the counting center. 

As his chances at victory shrank on Wednesday, Trump’s campaign set forth their plan to undermine the results which includes; 

  • Demanding a recount in Wisconsin, despite Biden winning by more than 20,000 votes which represents around 0.6% of the vote; it is within Wisconsin’s recount rules which allows for anything within a 1 point margin to qualify for a a recount 
  • Filing a lawsuit in Michigan demanding that all vote counting stop because his people weren’t giving proper access to voting sites and couldn’t oversee the counting process to ensure it was fair 
  • Filing two additional actions in Pennsylvania claiming the Senator there has given Biden back-door votes to try to push him out 
  • He says his people were kept too far away from the votes – 25ft – to check they were being counted properly  

They have already demanded a Wisconsin recount and have filed a lawsuit in Michigan asking that the vote counting be halted because they think it is suspicious.

‘The President is well within the threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so. 

‘There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results,’ Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien said in a statement shortly after Wisconsin chief election official Meagan Wolfe announced the state went for Biden. 

‘As votes in Michigan continue to be counted, the presidential race in the state remains extremely tight as we always knew it would be. President Trump’s campaign has not been provided with meaningful access to numerous counting locations to observe the opening of ballots and the counting process, as guaranteed by Michigan law 

‘We have filed suit today in the Michigan Court of Claims to halt counting until meaningful access has been granted. We also demand to review those ballots which were opened and counted while we did not have meaningful access.

‘President Trump is committed to ensuring that all legal votes are counted in Michigan and everywhere else,’ Stepien said. 

Officials in northern Michigan’s Antrim County are investigating possible inaccurate results after the traditionally red county flipped to Joe Biden, the Detroit Free Press reports.

In 2016, Trump won Antrim – which has 23,000 residents – with 62% of the vote, taking 8,469 votes to Hillary Clinton’s 4,448.

But officials, who did not check the unofficial results before posting them, were stunned when it appeared Joe Biden had gained 7,700 votes and was leading Trump by 3,000 votes Wednesday morning.

Antrim County Clerk Sheryl Guy, a Republican, said results on electronic tapes and a computer card appeared to be accurate. But she said they had become scrambled being transported in sealed bags from township precincts to county offices.

Officials are going over the tape of all the results and inputting the numbers manually.

Triston Cole, a Republican who represents Antrim County in the Michigan State House, told Interlochen Public Radio: ‘There is no way that we flipped from 62 percent Trump in 2016 to upside-down this time around’.

In a tweet earlier on Wednesday, the President cried fraud and claimed his overnight majority had ‘magically disappeared’ thanks to ‘surprise ballot dumps’ in Democrat states. 

It is due to a large number of mail-in ballots for Biden being counted after votes for Trump which have predominantly been in person.  Neither the President nor Joe Biden has yet reached the 270 electoral college votes they need to claim the White House and ballot counting will continue throughout the day and even the week.  

Biden has officially won the most votes of any presidential candidate. 

He currently has 69,543,071 votes, which is 50% of the total vote reported so far.

That beats Barack Obama, who, in 2008, won that record with 69,498,516 total votes, according to the Federal Election Commission.

If Biden wins Michigan and Wisconsin – with results due by early afternoon – and then, as expected, takes Nevada tomorrow – he will win the election with the key 270 electoral votes. 

Equally, he could take Michigan, Wisconsin and North Carolina today which would land him a victory, as would winning Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia, though those scenarios seem less likely because votes in both of the southern states are still being counted.  

Then it won’t matter what happens in the Pennsylvania vote which was likely to be the subject of messy Trump legal challenges if he failed to win it when it finally finishes counting votes on Friday. 

The only way for Trump to win is if he snatches back Michigan and Wisconsin today, then wins another 28 points in any combination of Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Nevada. 

But even as they dared dream of Biden finally entering the White House after decades of trying, and an end to the Trump regime, it was dawning on many Democrats that this was not the new era they had hoped for.

Despite almost every opinion poll predicting an easy Biden victory the election turned into an all-night nail-biter before a route home eventually opened up for Joe Biden.

It most certainly was not the national rejection of Trump they wanted.

THE REAL REASON TRUMP LOST HIS LEAD OVERNIGHT 

President Donald Trump saw his early lead in key state likes Wisconsin and Michigan vanish overnight as mail-in ballots were counted.

Votes cast on Election Day are counted first, followed by the mail-in ballots.

Those mail-in ballots were expected to break for Joe Biden as Democrats urged their supporters to cast their ballots early. Trump, in contrast, pushed his backers to go to the polls on Election Day.

Mail-in ballots generally take longer to count as they have to be checked against voter rolls to confirm it’s a legal ballot from a registered voter – just as when someone who votes in person has to confirm their identity with a poll worker before receiving a ballot.

For example, in Wisconsin, the mail-in ballot envelopes need to be checked against poll books and checked for voter signature, voter address and witness signature requirements before they’re opened. After they’re unsealed, ballots must be smoothed out before they’re fed into tabulating machines. If any ballots are damaged or the machine won’t accept them because they’re too rumpled or creased, the ballot will need to be re-created by poll workers in a time-consuming process dictated by state law, according to local reports.

Additionally, states were dealing with a heavier than usual volume of mail-in ballots because so many voters used that option due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Many of those mail-in ballots came from cities, which tend to contain more Democratic voters.

In Michigan, for example, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson predicted turnout would likely top 5.26 million – the most in state history – and many voters used mail-in ballots.

Several thousand outstanding ballots remained in Detroit on Wednesday, a heavily Democratic area expected to break for Biden, thereby increasing his vote count in the state.

In Pennsylvania, Trump led in early returns but Biden was expected to make up ground as mail-in ballots, particularly in the heavily Democratic areas of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, were counted.

State law forbids election officials from counting those ballots until Election Day. That and the large number of ballots led to the extended counting time.

Pennsylvania received roughly 10 times as many mail-in ballots this year than in past elections, Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar said. She said Wednesday there were more than 1.4 million mail-in ballots still to be counted and those votes are expected to heavily favor Biden.

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Trump still achieved 48 percent of the popular vote and notched up even MORE ballots than he did in 2016, albeit on a much higher turnover.

He also appeared to have made inroads into the black male and Latino demographics and not alienated as many white women as the polls suggested.

Meanwhile there was further disappointment in the Senate which remains tied at 47-47 so far – with little hope of Democrats eventually taking control.

And in another bitter blow to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Republicans even took BACK some House seats, closing the gap to give the Democrats a mere 89 against their 183 seats, with just a few left to call.

All in all, the disappointing night for the Democrat party risks leaving Biden with little chance of enacting a radical agenda of change, frustrating the left wing of his party.

As leading Democrat donor Barry Diller said: ‘It clearly will be that there is no progressive agenda that’s got any steam behind it, given what is likely to happen with a divided Congress.’

Diller, chairman of Expedia and IAC, told CNBC he was ‘humbled’ by the results so far.

He said: ‘I had hoped for a repudiation’ of Trump, but ‘for all the reasons that are kind of obvious that has not happened.’ 

Trump on Wednesday morning tweeted that votes for him were ‘magically disappearing’. 

‘Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key States, in almost all instances Democrat run & controlled. 

Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted. VERY STRANGE, and the “pollsters” got it completely & historically wrong!’ he said.  

He went on: ‘How come every time they count Mail-In ballot dumps they are so devastating in their percentage and power of destruction?’ 

He then reposted a graphic which showed Biden’s numbers by 100 percent in one count in Michigan, saying: ‘WHAT IS THIS ALL ABOUT?’  

At the same time, his campaign manager Bill Stepien laid out their strategy to question the results if Biden wins. 

He outlined the path the campaign saw, which includes a recount in Wisconsin, Trump winning more votes in Michigan and Pennsylvania going their way in greater margins than expected. 

The Trump campaign is also contesting Arizona, which has been called for Biden.

‘If we count all legal ballots the president wins. The votes still being counted will come the president’s way at day’s end,’ campaign manager Stepien said. 

The Trump campaign said they expect the matter to end up in the courts.

‘We are obviously leading a full court press to make sure we have our legal teams are in place to make sure all the legally cast votes are ballot,’ Trump campaign senior adviser Jason Miller said. 

Pennsylvania has said will keep counting mail-in ballots until Friday and it’s unclear when a final result will come in in the other states. Despite the overwhelming uncertainty, Trump held a victory party on Tuesday night and said at the White House.  

‘Nearly 100 million people cast their ballot before Election Day in the belief — and with the assurances from their state election officials — that their ballot would be counted. Now Donald Trump is trying to invalidate the ballot of every voter who relied on these assurances,’ she continued. 

‘If the president makes good on his threat to go to court to try to prevent the proper tabulation of votes, we have legal teams standing by ready to deploy to resist that effort. And they will prevail.’  

Trump provided little clarity about what he has in mind for his legal team after claiming falsely early Wednesday that he already ‘won’ the election.

Trump said he was ‘going’ to the Supreme Court, when in fact the course of action would be for Republican lawyers to sue in individual states and county jurisdictions seeking to stop or modify the count in some way.

If, for example, Republicans allege that there is a problem in the county in Allegheny County, PA, they first must go to court there, appeal through the Pennsylvania courts system and then if they are not satisfied, go to a federal court. Federal court decisions are appealed to the federal appeals circuit, and from there to the Supreme Court.

It is also up to the Supreme Court to decide whether it even hears a case. It can simply decline to take it which leaves in place whatever ruling the federal appeals circuit has made.

Three different federal appeals circuits are potentially involved in the Midwestern states.

Pennsylvania is in the Third Circuit, which had a majority of Trump and George W. Bush appointees; Michigan is in the Sixth Circuit which is majority Republican appointed, and Wisconsin is in the Seventh, against majority Republican.

‘So we’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court,’ Trump said in a speech to supporters at the White House where he railed against TV networks for making election calls that went against him while pointing out the battleground states where he holds leads over Joe Biden.

‘We want all voting to stop. We don’t want them to find any ballots at four in the morning and add them to the list,’ Trump said.

His chief legal obstacle is that states, who oversee elections under the Constitution, are fulfilling their obligations by counting votes lawfully cast. Seeking to stop the count before all votes are accounted for would likely run into constitutional protections for ‘one person, one vote’ grounded in the Equal Protection clause. 

Votes being counted in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday. Pennsylvania is likely to be the last state to return a result

Votes being counted in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday. Pennsylvania is likely to be the last state to return a result

Trump has repeatedly claimed mail-in ballots are fraudulent. However, lawyers representing his campaign and Republicans have already gone to court seeking to stop states from counting mail-in ballots after Election Day.

In the case of Wisconsin, the Supreme Court already upheld Wisconsin’s voting laws requiring mail-in ballots be received by Nov. 3 to get counted. What was holding up results there was simply the process of ballots already in.

‘We will win this. As far as I’m concerned, we already have won,’ Trump told supporters. 

Pennsylvania is further behind in completing its count, with less than three-quarters of the vote in around 4 am. Before the election, there was reporting in the Atlantic that amid a dispute over ballots, the Republican legislature could try to send a set of pro-Trump electors if the state’s vote remained undecided or contested in December.

The state was already the site of a pre-election battle that had the Supreme Court deciding 4-4 to allow mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day to come in for three days after the election.

The decision itself would appear to contradict Trump’s claim that he has already ‘won’ based on an election that has not yet been certified with ballots still allowed to come in.

In just one example of the kind of multi-front campaign GOP lawyers could have in mind, a Republican congressional candidate has sued suburban Montgomery County outside Philadelphia claiming the state improperly began its count too early. The suit accuses the county of making ‘arbitrary standards’ – even as Trump complains about the process of deciding the election taking too long.

The astonishing move was immediately condemned by his own party. 

Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro tweeted, ‘No, Trump has not already won the election, and it is deeply irresponsible for him to say he has.’

Fox News was also critical of Trump’s approach.

‘This is an extremely flammable situation and the president just threw a match into it,’ said Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace, who moderated the first presidential debate. ‘He hasn’t won these states.’

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican who advises Trump and helped him with debate prep, believed the president would come to regret it.

‘It’s a bad strategic decision. It’s a bad political decision,’ Christie said.

Former GOP Sen. Rick Santorum, speaking on CNN, copped it up to Trump being stressed, old and it being 2 a.m. and suggested he would walk back his comments tomorrow and say every vote needs to be counted.

‘I was very distressed by what I just heard the president say,’ Santorum said.

Trump at around 2.30am this morning with Melania after a press conference where he called the result a 'fraud' on the American people

Trump at around 2.30am this morning with Melania after a press conference where he called the result a ‘fraud’ on the American people 

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks on election night in the East Room of the White House as First Lady Melania Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence look on. Trump spoke shortly after 2am with the presidential race against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden still too close to call

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks on election night in the East Room of the White House as First Lady Melania Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence look on. Trump spoke shortly after 2am with the presidential race against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden still too close to call

Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Lara Trump, Eric Trump, Tiffany Trump and Michael Boulos all appear on election night in the East Room of the White House in the early morning hours of Wednesday

Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Lara Trump, Eric Trump, Tiffany Trump and Michael Boulos all appear on election night in the East Room of the White House in the early morning hours of Wednesday 

Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump appear on election night in the East Room of the White House

Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump appear on election night in the East Room of the White House

Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump appear on election night in the East Room of the White House. Donald Trump Jr had earlier shared an Instagram snap of the elaborate viewing party posing with his siblings Eric and Ivanka and their children saying: ‘In the game. Let’s do this.’ Lara Trump also shared a snap with Guilfoyle with a celebratory emoji

Biden was handed Arizona by Fox News, and later by the Associated Press, in a call which the White House was disputing. Both he and Trump are now effectively in a stalemate which can only be ended by the lengthy process of counting mail-in ballots.

‘We feel good about where we are, we really do. I’m here to tell you tonight, we believe we’re on track to win this election,’ Biden told supporters gathered outside the Chase Center just after midnight. He pointed to the gain of Arizona and Minnesota, which NBC News said was leaning Biden minutes before he came onstage.

 

Trump's tweets through the night were flagged by Twitter as being misleading. He  is claiming that election fraud has taken place

Trump’s tweets through the night were flagged by Twitter as being misleading. He  is claiming that election fraud has taken place

‘And we’re still in the game in Georgia, although that’s not one we expected,’ Biden said. ‘We feel real good about Wisconsin and Michigan. And, by the way, we’re going to win Pennsylvania,’ he said, getting copious honks from his drive-in crowd.

Biden said he was ‘encouraged,’ especially, by turnout in Philadelphia, which is adjacent to Wilmington.

‘Look, we could know the results as early as tomorrow morning. 

‘It may take longer as I’ve said all along,’ he said. ‘It’s not my place or Donald Trump’s place to call who wins this election, that’s the decision of the American people.’

‘I am optimistic about this outcome,’ he said.

Right before he exited he told the crowd that he and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris, would be talking tomorrow.

As Biden was pulling in, the jumbotrons, which were playing MSNBC, announced that President Donald Trump had officially won Florida – the first sign Tuesday that the U.S. was in for a long night.

Big swaths of potentially Democratic votes were outstanding in places like Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Detroit and Atlanta when Biden appeared.

Trump tweeted immediately after Biden’s speech to accuse Biden of fraud and say he was ‘winning BIG’ and would make his own statement.

‘Votes cannot be cast after the Poles are closed!’ he tweeted from the White House residence – spelling polls incorrectly, but making clear that the battle will be over late-arriving mail-in ballots.

Trump tweeted that ‘they are trying to STEAL the Election’. His accusation was flagged almost immediately by Twitter as ‘misleading’ 

After 1am, Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional district – which is worth one electoral vote – was called for Biden.

Trump won the rest of state, collecting four electoral college votes.   

The gain for Biden is notable because it will prevent a 269-269 tie between the two presidential candidates. In 2016, Trump won all three of Nebraska’s Congressional districts and thus all of its five electoral votes.

Trump snatched the biggest electoral prizes of the night in the closing minutes of Tuesday, as he took Ohio, Florida and Texas.

But Biden scored the first takeaway of the evening as he was also given Arizona, making the western battleground the first state to change hands from 2016.

The gain provided Biden a precarious path to victory even if he were to lose one of three Midwestern states with tight races that are part of his battle plan.

But that means the election now hinges on results which are certain to take well into Wednesday and probably even longer to be determined.

In Wisconsin, outstanding ballots in the state are coming in from red counties, including Brown County, where Green Bay is located – and where Trump held a rally on October 30. Those ballots, however, are from the mail-in category, which tend to tilt Democratic.

If Biden snags Wisconsin, he just needs Georgia, Pennsylvania or Michigan to win 270 Electoral votes.  

Keeping Ohio, Florida and Texas also suggested that polls had badly underestimated Trump’s support in the key battlegrounds – with some giving Biden double-digit leads with days to go, only for it to evaporate.

TRUMP’S LEGAL OPTIONS TO STOP ‘ALL VOTING’ AFTER CLAIMING ELECTION FRAUD AND VOWING TO GO TO THE SUPREME COURT

Trump provided little clarity about what he has in mind for his legal team after claiming falsely early Wednesday that he already ‘won’ the election, calling Tuesday’s election a ‘fraud on the American people’, and demanding that ‘all voting stop’.

Trump said he was ‘going’ to the Supreme Court to stop the counting of votes, when in fact the course of action would be for Republican lawyers to sue in individual state and county jurisdictions that seek to stop or modify the count in some way.

If, for example, Republicans allege that there is a problem in the county of Allegheny County, PA, they first must go to court there, appeal through the Pennsylvania courts system and then if they are not satisfied, go to a federal court. Federal court decisions are appealed to the federal appeals circuit, and from there to the Supreme Court.

It is also up to the Supreme Court to decide whether it even hears a case. It can simply decline to take it which leaves in place whatever ruling the federal appeals circuit has made. 

Three different federal appeals circuits are potentially involved in the Midwestern states.

Pennsylvania is in the Third Circuit, which had a majority of Trump and George W. Bush appointees; Michigan is in the Sixth Circuit which is majority Republican appointed, and Wisconsin is in the Seventh, against majority Republican.

‘So we’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court,’ Trump said in a speech to supporters at the White House at 2.30am where he railed against TV networks for making election calls that went against him while pointing out the battleground states where he holds leads over Joe Biden.

‘We want all voting to stop. We don’t want them to find any ballots at four in the morning and add them to the list,’ Trump said.

His chief legal obstacle is that states, who oversee elections under the Constitution, are fulfilling their obligations by counting votes lawfully cast. Seeking to stop the count before all votes are accounted for would likely run into constitutional protections for ‘one person, one vote’ grounded in the Equal Protection clause.

Trump has repeatedly claimed mail-in ballots are fraudulent. However, lawyers representing his campaign and Republicans have already gone to court seeking to stop states from counting mail-in ballots after Election Day.   

In the case of Wisconsin, which still had considerable outstanding vote Wednesday morning, the Supreme Court already upheld Wisconsin’s voting laws requiring mail-in ballots be received by November 3 to get counted. What was holding up results there was simply the process of ballots already in. 

‘We will win this. As far as I’m concerned, we already have won,’ Trump told supporters.

Pennsylvania is further behind in completing its count, with less than three-quarters of the vote in around 4am. Before the election, there was reporting in the Atlantic that amid a dispute over ballots, the Republican legislature could try to send a set of pro-Trump electors if the state’s vote remained undecided or contested in December.

The state was already the site of a pre-election battle that had the Supreme Court deciding 4-4 to allow mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day to come in for three days after the election.

The decision itself would appear to contradict Trump’s claim that he has already ‘won’ based on an election that has not yet been certified with ballots still allowed to come in.

In just one example of the kind of multi-front campaign GOP lawyers could have in mind, a Republican congressional candidate has sued suburban Montgomery County outside Philadelphia claiming the state improperly began its count too early. The suit accuses the county of making ‘arbitrary standards’ – even as Trump complains about the process of deciding the election taking too long.

 

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Ohio, with its 18 Electoral Votes, is a state Trump carried in 2016, but it represented an opportunity for Biden. He made a quick visit to Cleveland one of his final trips of the campaign.

Biden also eyed Florida as a prime electoral prize, but it was only a part of several electoral vote scenarios his team prepared to execute.

Having Florida and Ohio in his column handed the president key pieces of his 2016 successful electoral map – depriving Joe Biden of an early prize that would have sent a powerful signal had he won it.

However, the AP and other networks stopped short of calling Florida for Trump, given the close margin, outstanding vote, and the state’s history of close and contested elections.

A Trump loss in Florida had been potentially devastating. Instead, he was on track to keep a state where public polls had Biden with a narrow lead. Trump made Florida, a regular battleground, his official residence after moving it from New York.

Biden is leading Trump in Arizona. The projected victory means he can take away the state’s 11 electoral votes from the 306-vote coalition Trump assembled four years ago. 

That means Biden now needs to win two of the three Midwestern states which Hillary Clinton lost in 2016 to get to 270 electoral college votes. But with Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin all saying that mail-in ballot counting is going to run into Wednesday and even later, that means there is no rapid resolution in sight.

Biden made Arizona a top target, hoping to bank on demographic changes there. He got another boost when Cindy McCain, widow of the late Arizona Senator John McCain, endorsed him and campaigned with him. John McCain has been a regular Trump target, and his vote in the Senate helped kill a GOP effort to repeal Obamacare.

With Florida out of reach, Biden could still look to North Carolina, but he was trailing Trump there with 95 per cent of the vote in. Trump also held a narrow lead in Iowa with 84% of precincts reporting. In Georgia, Trump was leading 53 to 45, with 80% of precincts reporting.

Adding to the confusion and drama of the evening, each state counted its votes differently – with some running through early votes quickly, and others starting with Election Day votes, and mail-in ballots continuing to be the wild card.

The first sign of trouble for the Democrat began with disappointing vote totals coming in from Miami-Dade County in Florida. Biden ran ahead of President Trump there – but was only up 53 to 46% with 95% of precincts reporting. 

That wasn’t enough to match Hillary Clinton’s totals, and didn’t appear to be enough to offset Trump advantages in other rural parts of the state. It was a sign that Biden hadn’t done what he needed to do to lock down support among the state’s many Cuban-American, Venezuelan-American, and other Hispanic voters. 

Improvements over Clinton’s numbers outside Tampa and around Jacksonville might not be enough to make up the difference, and the state was too close to call with 94% of precincts reporting, although Trump was holding on to a narrow lead.

Florida has a long history of close elections and contested counts, and networks were loath to make final calls even with Trump leading 51 to 48 with 94% of precincts reporting. 

An early lead for Biden in Texas also slipped away, with Trump leading 51 to 47 with 80% of precincts reporting.

None of those state results were final, and there were also encouraging signs for Biden, including outperforming Clinton in some suburban areas that were key to Trump’s victory. 

In a sign that Democrats’ vast fundraising had failed to bring about success, the $100million spent by Jaime Harrison to unseat Lindsey Graham in South Carolina failed, with the Republican winning by a projected margin of as much as 10 points. 

President Trump watched returns in the upstairs residence of the White House with family and close advisers. Downstairs in the East Wing, Trump supporters watched returns on TV screens showing Fox News and snacking on fast food, including French fries and hamburgers.

Biden is at his home in Wilmington, watching the votes come in with his family.   

Trump won eight electoral votes from Kentucky, five from West Virginia and 11 from Indiana, while Biden took three for Vermont.   

The Supreme Court extended deadlines in North Carolina and Pennsylvania for officials there to accept mail-in ballots, a blow to Republicans.

Trump, in particular, has railed against the Pennsylvania decision and has threatened legal action in the state against any disputed ballots.  

Nancy Pelosi SHRINKS her Democratic majority in the House despite believing Republicans were outspent and outgunned – and faces nightmare of AOC-led Squad getting even larger – as Senate is tied at 47-47

Speaker Pelosi's majority shrank overnight

Speaker Pelosi’s majority shrank overnight

Democrats went into Tuesday night expecting to pad their majority in the House, but instead Republicans were able to unseat several incumbents and close the gap.

Both parties’ assumption going into Election Day was that Democrats would be able to snatch at least a dozen more seats from GOP incumbents, adding to their majority in the lower chamber.

The opposite outcome ensued, however, with Republicans picking up several seats and defending representatives in at-risk districts.

Now, Democratic leadership led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have to think hard about what went wrong and answer difficult questions on how their ideal Election Night was knocked so hard off track.

Republicans could very likely have a net gain of 10 House seats.

Pelosi led the House with 232 seats compared to Republicans’ 197 going into Election Day, but it now appears that the GOP will have somewhere north of 200 seats, holding a solid minority with more power than they’ve had the last two years.

The Democratic leader along with Chairwoman of House Democrats’ campaign arm Rep. Cheri Bustos of Illinois predicted a sunny outcome for Democrats Tuesday, claiming they would defend the 2018 gains and flip districts previously thought to be in safe Republican territory.

Madison Cawthorn, 25, of North Carolina becomes the youngest member of the House

Madison Cawthorn, 25, of North Carolina becomes the youngest member of the House 

‘I think we are going to see some wins in these deep red districts that over time you’re going to see going from ruby red to purple to even blue,’ Bustos said Tuesday. 

She also leaned into the uncertainty of this years’ election, adding in her remarks ‘this is an Election Day that may end up looking like an Election Week.’

While Republicans overall are declaring Tuesday a win for their Party in the House, more progressive Democrats, including all four members of the ‘squad’, earned a win in their House races.

Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York; Ilhan Omar of Minnesota; Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts; and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan all solidly won reelection bids in their respective districts.

They also added a few new members to their ‘squad,’ to the dismay of Pelosi – a more establishment Democrat whose views often don’t line up with those in the more progressive arm of the Party.

Cori Bush, who won in Missouri’s 1st District, was immediately embraced by the ‘squad.’

The group also added its first two male members with Jamaal Bowman, who won his race in New York’s 16th District, and Mondaire Jones in New York 17.

Bowman said, ‘2018 was just the beginning when my sisters in The Squad were able to win their positions.’

‘Now we’re more than doubling up, in terms of those who are coming in with an unapologetically progressive platform rooted in centering racial and economic justice,’ he added.

Although Ocasio-Cortez was currently the youngest member of the House, elected at 29 and now 31-years-old, Republicans will now hold that seat with Madison Cawthorn in North Carolina.

The 25-year-old is taking over former Rep. Mark Meadow’s seat in North Carolina’s deep red 11th District after he vacated the seat earlier this year when he became the White House Chief of Staff earlier this year.

Potentially the biggest House win for Republicans was flipping Minnesota’s 7th District seat red after trying to unseat Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson there for decades and 15 terms.

Peterson, 76, has held his seat in the midwest state since 1991, but was solidly beat out by Republican Michelle Fischbach who earned 53.6 per cent of the vote to his 39.8 per cent. Only Minneapolis, the state’s largest city, and its suburbs voted for Peterson’s reelection, yet again.

With the help of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF), the GOP had the funds and organization to mobilize House race efforts.

The GOP added several women to their ranks Tuesday night.

‘We defied the odds. It’s the night of the Republican women,’ House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told Politico early Wednesday Morning. ‘The Democrats never solved one problem in their majority. They promised they would govern differently, and they didn’t.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scored the first important win of the election night, with networks calling his race for reelection soon after the polls closed in Kentucky

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scored the first important win of the election night, with networks calling his race for reelection soon after the polls closed in Kentucky

Republicans beat two South Florida Democratic incumbents in the Miami area, which usually goes strongly blue – especially in presidential elections.

Democratic Rep. Donna Shalala, who at 78 at the time was the oldest freshman woman ever elected, lost her seat to broadcast journalist Maria Elvira Shalazar in Florida’s 27th District. And Democratic Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell lost her seat to Republican Carlos Gimenez, a Cuban American, who won the 26th District seat.

Incumbent Democrats were also defeated by GOP candidates in New Mexico, Oklahoma and South Carolina and Republicans were able to hold onto vulnerable districts in places like Texas and elsewhere.

Nancy Mace took Rep. Joe Cunningham’s House seat in South Carolina 1st District.

Republican candidate Nicole Malliotakis is ahead in New York’s 11th District, which includes Staten Island – and is on track to beat incumbent Democrat Max Rose with a 15.8 per cent margin as of Wednesday morning.

Democratic Reps. Xochitl Torres Small of New Mexico and Kendra Horn of Oklahoma will also both vacate their seats for Republicans to take over in January.

In Virginia’s 7th District, which spans a large area west, north west and south west of Richmond, Republican Nick Freitas is on track to defeat Democrat incumbent Abigail Spanberger.

Lindsey Graham (above voting in a mask) beat out his challenger, Jaime Harrison, who became a potent fundraiser, and as the race tightened Graham was forced to go on Fox News repeatedly to ask national viewers to make contributions to his reelection effort

Lindsey Graham (above voting in a mask) beat out his challenger, Jaime Harrison, who became a potent fundraiser, and as the race tightened Graham was forced to go on Fox News repeatedly to ask national viewers to make contributions to his reelection effort

In the Senate, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scored the first important win of the election night, with networks calling his race for reelection soon after the polls closed in Kentucky.

It was a result that political experts had forecast – but it dashed the hopes of Trump ‘resistance’ members who poured contributions into the race in hopes of turning back a prime facilitator of the president’s agenda.

McConnell, the architect of the strategy to push through a quick confirmation for Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, was leading Democrat Amy McGrath 56% to 40%, with about two-thirds of the state’s vote counted.

McConnell, who also helped push through Trump’s tax cuts and confirmed a raft of appeals court judges, also designed the strategy to block President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nomination of Merrick Garland.

What is still unknown is whether he will return to the Senate next year as majority leader or as minority leader. 

He won in a what was looking to be a difficult year for incumbent Republicans after spending 36 years in the Senate, defeating McGrath, a former Marine fighter pilot, as President Donald Trump carried the state.

Democrats made McConnell a top target even with ample other opportunities on the map, funneling $88 million to McGrath and shattering records compared to $55million for McConnell, a proven fundraiser.

Both Biden and Donald Trump have been eyeing Pennsylvania as one of the key swing states in the White House race. 

Pennsylvania accounts for a significant 20 electoral votes meaning both Republicans and Democrats – as well as pollsters – believe the outcome of the state could dictate the entire race. Concerns are mounting that Trump will declare victory in the state long before votes are counted or that he will attempt to stop mail-in votes being counted after election day. 

Denver mayor John Hickenlooper (above) defeated Colorado Senator Cory Gardner

Denver mayor John Hickenlooper (above) defeated Colorado Senator Cory Gardner

Democrats are thought to be more likely to vote by mail-in voting given Trump’s constant rhetoric that the process is ‘rigged’. 

Colorado Senator Cory Gardner became the first major political casualty Tuesday night, after former governor and Denver mayor John Hickenlooper defeated him.

Gardner was considered one of the most endangered Republican incumbents on the ballot Tuesday, running in a state where Joe Biden was running strongly against President Trump.

His defeat would take the GOP’s narrow Senate majority down to 52 votes – however should Republicans knock off Alabama Democratic Sen. Doug Jones it would be a wash.

Gardner trailed Hickenlooper in opinion polls going into election day, and Hickenlooper overcame some of his own stumbles after he was forced to pay a state ethics fine. He ran for president this year and stumbled, but was considered a top Democratic prospect in his state.

Like other Senate Republicans, Hickenlooper became tied to Trump, who was viewed negatively in the state. Although he once criticized Trump during the 2016 campaign after the ‘Access Hollywood’ tape, Gardner, a former leader of his party’s campaign wing, didn’t put much distance between himself and the president.

He said he thought Trump was moral and ethical when asked about it during a candidates’ debate. ‘I wish he could be more specific in his communications with the American people,’ Gardner added.  

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