Nov. 3, 2020, was election day in the United States, and Americans across the country decide whether to pick Donald Trump or Joe Biden for president. In addition to voting for the president, Americans were also casting votes for Congressmen and women. All 435 seats in the lower chamber of Congress, the House of Representatives, were up for election.
A record-breaking 91 million Americans already cast their ballots ahead of Election Day. The covid-19 pandemic is most likely the primary factor that drove people to cast their ballot early either through the mail or where available in-person early voting in an attempt to avoid long lines and crowds on Election Day. Overall turnout in Tuesday’s election was projected to be the highest in 120 years at 66.9%, according to the US Election Project.
The winner of the election is determined through a system called the electoral college, a body of 538 appointed electors, or delegates, who are apportioned to each state and Washington, D.C. The winner needs 270 electoral votes (apportioned to states by population) to capture the White House.
In every state except two – Maine and Nebraska – the candidate that gets the most votes wins all of the state’s electoral college votes. Due to these rules, a candidate can win the election without getting the most votes at the national level.
Donald Trump and Joe Biden each claim to be ahead in the US presidential election, even as the final outcome hangs on a razor’s edge and both sides gear up for legal action.
On Wednesday afternoon, Biden told reporters in Wilmington, Delaware: “When the count is finished, we believe we will be the winners.” Senior Trump campaign aide Jason Miller said: “By the end of this week, it will be clear to the entire nation that President Trump and Vice-President Pence will be elected for another four years.”
The risk of a prolonged contested election remains as Trump’s campaign has filed a lawsuit in the undecided state of Georgia, asking a judge in Chatham County “to ensure the state laws are being followed on absentee ballots,” AP reported. The filing includes an affidavit in which a registered poll worker claims he saw at least 53 late ballots mixed in with others, according to The Hill. The campaign has also filed lawsuits in Michigan and Pennsylvania over vote counting.
Meanwhile, different media outlets are showing different results for the electoral votes. The time and date we know the official results of the 2020 election depends on a variety of factors. First, each state will continue to count the popular vote and certify the results in the days — and even weeks — after Election Day.
Stock markets around the world stayed strong on Thursday despite a looming and potentially prolonged legal battle over the results of the elections. Australian markets hit a more than one-week high while in Japan, the Nikkei average climbed 410.05 points, or 1.73 percent, to 24,105.28, its highest since Oct. 3, 2018.In Europe, the FTSE 100 index and the STOXX 600 were also up after markets opened.
The winner of the 2020 presidential election is scheduled to be inaugurated on January 20, 2021. Till then, days of court battles and political uncertainty lie ahead. The next President will shape not only America’s destiny for the next four years but the international political landscape, too. The whole world keeps watching with bated breath.