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White House race on knife edge

White House race on knife edge
(L-R) President Donald Trump (Republican) and Joe Biden (Democrat)
WASHINGTON, NOV 4 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 11/4/2020 12:49:24 PM IST

Trump vs Biden: Tight race down to key states

President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden are battling it out for the White House, with polls closed across the United States-- and the American people waiting for results in key battlegrounds still up for grabs.

Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden has bagged the critical battleground state of Wisconsin, and holds narrow leads in swing states of Michigan, Nevada and Arizona, while President Donald Trump leads in Georgia and North Carolina. President Trump will “immediately” seek a recount in Wisconsin, said the Republican candidate’s campaign manager. 

“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 the threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so,” said campaign manager Bill Stepien in a statement.

Biden has won at least three of four of Maine’s electoral votes, according to projections, to widen his slim lead over Trump in the race to reach 270 votes needed to win the presidential election. In an incredible reversal of fortunes, the former vice-president has also taken a sudden lead in Michigan. Biden’s campaign has said its legal teams are “ready to deploy” if Trump presses ahead with his “outrageous” threat to move the Supreme Court to stop election counting. In a statement, Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon called Trump’s statement that he will “be going to the US Supreme Court” and that he wants “all voting to stop” “outrageous, unprecedented and incorrect”.

While President Trump has promised to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on a presidential race that is still too close to call, the nation’s top judicial body may not be the final arbiter in this election, legal experts said.

Election law experts said it is doubtful that courts would entertain a bid by Trump to stop the counting of ballots that were received before or on Election Day, or that any dispute a court might handle would change the trajectory of the race in closely fought states like Michigan and Pennsylvania. With vote-counting still underway in many states in the early hours of Wednesday morning, Trump made an appearance at the White House and declared victory against Democratic challenger Joe Biden.

“This is a major fraud on our nation. We want the law to be used in a proper manner. So we’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop,” he said. The Republican president did not provide any evidence to back up his claim of fraud or detail what litigation he would pursue at the Supreme Court.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the election still hung in the balance. A handful of closely contested states could decide the outcome in the coming hours or days, as a large number of mail-in ballots cast amid the coronavirus pandemic appears to have drawn out the process. However, legal experts said that while there could be objections to particular ballots or voting and counting procedures, it was unclear if such disputes would determine the final outcome.

Till Wednesday night (IST) Biden had 238 electoral votes and Trump 213. The magic number of electoral votes is 270.

 

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