People colour in an electoral map of the United States at the country’s embassy in Ulaanbaatar, the Mongolian capital, during an election-night watch party on Nov. 4.
BYAMBASUREN BYAMBA-OCHIR/AFP via Getty Images
- Deadlocked: Donald Trump and Joe Biden continued the fight for several U.S. states on Wednesday morning after a presidential election night in which they each predicted victory, but the outcome was too close to call. With millions of mail-in ballots still being counted, it could be days before Americans know who wins.
- States in play: The candidates are each projected to win some battleground states Arizona for Mr. Biden, Florida and Texas for Mr. Trump but others, including Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan and North Carolina, are up in the air. Those states matter because they are rich sources of Electoral College votes; heres a primer on how the college works.
- Congress: Many state congressional races are also too close to call and its unclear who will end up controlling the Senate, whose current Republican majority has been crucial to Mr. Trumps agenda and his impeachment trial earlier this year.
A Trump supporter watches a live broadcast of the President in Las Vegas on election night.
John Locher/The Associated Press
The candidates’ next moves
- Legal challenges ahead: Mr. Trump claimed on election night, without evidence, that the vote was a major fraud on our nation and threatened to fight the results to the Supreme Court, where, a week earlier, his third appointed judge was sworn in. The Globe and Mails Sean Fine explains what a court decision might involve.
- Global reaction: World leaders took a wait-and-see approach when commenting on Tuesday nights results, and several foreign ministers, such as Spains and Britains, said it was too early for Mr. Trump to say he won.
- Markets: Investors girded for days of disruption to equity, debt and currency markets on Wednesday after many of them bet on a decisive Democratic victory that hasnt arrived. Oil prices rose after Mr. Trumps premature declaration of victory: His hard-line views on Iran and support of OPEC production cuts are seen as bullish for oil.
The results we know (and dont) so far
The results you see in this map, and any other electoral maps youll see today, are projections based on the votes counted so far, the margin of victory between candidates and the patterns observed in past elections. (These projections are from the Associated Press wire service; heres a primer on their methodology for calling or not calling a particular state.) But the vote that actually matters is on Dec. 14, when the Electoral College picks the president based on their home states’ final results. To win the presidency, Joe Biden or Donald Trump need at least 270 Electoral College votes.
Some states (often dubbed battleground states or purple states) matter more than others in the presidential race because theyve got lots of Electoral College votes that have changed hands between Republicans and Democrats over the years. Heres how some of those races are turning out.
Marian Collin Franco, 20, helps collect provisional ballots on election day at a county courthouse in Erie, Pa.
Greg Wohlford/Erie Times-News via AP
Too close to call
- Pennsylvania: This state was critical to Mr. Trumps victory in 2016, and Mr. Biden, who grew up there, has been trying to take it back for the Democrats. Crucially, its a state where mail-in ballots will continue to be counted up to three days after election day as long as they have a postmark of Nov. 3 or earlier.
- Michigan: This state includes some of the U.S. neighbourhoods hit hardest by COVID-19, sowing some discontent with the Trump administrations handling of the pandemic. But its white working-class voters have also been vocal supporters of Mr. Trump.
- North Carolina: Democrats have been making some inroads into what was once a reliably red state, and recent court decisions there have overturned state laws that Black voters argued discriminated against them.
Trump supporters cheer outside of the Versailles restaurant in Miami on election night.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Projected for Trump
- Florida: Mr. Trump, whose Mar-a-Lago mansion in this state is considered his second White House, has been working hard to maintain the Republican base here. So far, his margin of victory in Florida bigger than it was against Hillary Clinton in 2016.
- Texas: This state has been reliably Republican for decades, though Mr. Biden had hoped that an upset was possible.
Musicians perform at the Burton Barr Library polling station in Phoenix on election day.
OLIVIER TOURON/AFP via Getty Images
Projected for Biden
- Arizona: This Sun Belt state has a long history of voting Republican, or producing GOP presidential nominees like John McCain or Barry Goldwater. But its increasingly moderate suburban voter base, including a fast-growing Latino population resentful of Mr. Trumps Mexican border policy, have changed things in the Democrats’ favour.
What happens if theres no definite winner?
States still have weeks to sort out who won their elections and how their Electoral College votes should be allocated. The key question for now is when they will stop counting the ballots. Each state has different rules for when the count of mail-in ballots starts (some didnt begin until election day, others counted them as they arrived) and when it ends. Its common for parties or candidates to challenge counting methods in court or demand recounts, which could be extra-chaotic in a pandemic that has pushed many states’ counting centres to their limits.
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If, in the end, Mr. Trump and Mr. Biden are tied at 269 votes each, then the newly elected House of Representatives will have to choose between them in January. Such a vote, called a contingent election, hasnt happened since 1825. It would involve every states delegation of legislatures choosing as a bloc whether to support Mr. Trump or Mr. Biden, and whichever one gets 26 states or more wins.
Commentary and analysis
Elizabeth Renzetti: A long four years capped by one of the longest days yet
Editorial: This election was a referendum on Americas soul and its not over
Simon Houpt: The rise of Trump fact-checks exposes the medias built-in vulnerability to misinformation
Compiled by Globe staff
With reports from Adrian Morrow, Tamsin McMahon, John Ibbitson, Evan Annett, The Associated Press and Reuters
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