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Biden Takes Lead in Georgia, Trump Camp Files Legal Challenges - Other Swing States Still Counting

11-04-2020
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Trump and Biden

While votes continue to be counted in key battleground states, the race for the White House remains too close to call. 

The magic number that Democrat Joe Biden and Republican President Donald Trump are looking for is 270 electoral votes. The Electoral College was a system set up in the US Constitution to give all states a voice in the outcome, to prevent bigger states from dominating the whole country. Neither candidate had the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win, but Biden continues to lead the race for the White House. 

All eyes are on Georgia Friday morning as the nation waits to see who will win the state and its coveted 16 electoral votes.  Biden took the lead in Georgia in the early morning hours, overtaking Trump. 

By 6:10 am ET, Biden led Trump by 1,096 votes overall after votes were counted in Clayton County. With 99% of Georgia's expected vote in, the race is still neck and neck, with Biden winning 49.39% of the vote, and Trump winning 49.37%. According to Georiga law, a candidate can request a recount if the margin is less than 0.5 percent of cast votes.  

Currently, Biden has 264 electoral votes and Trump has 214, according to projections from the Associated Press. Other election experts dispute that count, saying it should be 253 to 214 because Arizona is too close to call. 

SWING STATE WINS

As the critical battleground states of Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Nevada continue counting votes, President Trump’s campaign filed lawsuits Wednesday in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Georgia, laying the groundwork for contesting battleground states election results. The new filings demand better access for campaign observers to locations where ballots are being processed and counted, and absentee ballot concerns, the campaign said. 

In Georgia, the Trump campaign along with the Georgia Republican Party filed a lawsuit against the Chatham County Board of Elections asking a judge to order the county to secure and account for ballots received after 7:00 pm on Election Day. Chatham County Superior Court Judge James Bass dismissed the lawsuit after a one-hour hearing.

The lawsuit alleges that a Republican observer watched a poll worker take unprocessed absentee ballots from a back room and mix them into processed absentee ballots waiting to be tabulated. In Georgia, ballots must be received by 7:00 pm on Election Day in order to count. Chatham County contains Savannah and leans Democratic. County officials testified that all ballots had been received on time. 

State party Chairman David Shafer said in a statement Wednesday night that they planned to sue in a dozen counties.

Earlier Wednesday, The Associated Press called the presidential race in Michigan for Biden with its 16 electoral votes. He just needs 6 more electoral votes to reach the 270 electoral vote threshold. Nevada with its 6 electoral votes will not release its election results until 9:00 am Thursday. 

The Trump campaign has also filed a lawsuit in a Michigan state court demanding access to locations where ballots were being counted. The campaign said it is calling for a temporary halt in the counting until it is given “meaningful access” in numerous locations and allowed to review ballots that already have been opened and processed. Trump is running slightly behind Biden in Michigan. 

Also on Wednesday, the Associated Press reported Biden won the state of Wisconsin. Earlier in the day, Trump 2020 Campaign Manager Bill Stepien announced there are problems with the vote in Wisconsin and so the campaign will seek a recount.  

"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," Stepien said.

So far, Biden is leading in the electoral and popular votes, and The Associated Press reported Wednesday morning that the former vice president won Arizona, turning the red state blue. However, with 90% of the expected vote reporting, the Trump campaign insists he still has a fighting chance at claiming the state after all the votes are counted. Biden's lead narrowed Friday as Arizona officials continue to count votes, but the former vice president still holds an edge over Trump, 50.06% to 48.54%.

Trump won the key swing states of Ohio and Florida, and he's pulled off a big win in Texas which hadn't been seen as a swing state in the past. 

CHECK OUT our LIVE Election Map for the latest results

Both men told supporters during speeches early Wednesday morning that they are on the path to victory.

"We believe we are on track to win this election," Biden told supporters in Delaware, urging them to be patient. 

Shortly after, in a speech at the White House, Trump said he believed he had won the election and vowed to go to the Supreme Court over disputed ballots. 

OVERALL STATE WINS - SUBJECT TO CHANGE:

The Associated Press has reported President Donald Trump has won Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Kansas, Missouri, Idaho, Utah, Florida, Texas, Iowa, and one district in Maine.    

Democrat Joe Biden has carried the majority of Maine, Virginia, Vermont, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Delaware, Rhode Island, Maryland, New Mexico, New York, the District of Columbia, Colorado, New Hampshire, California, Oregon, Washington state, Hawaii, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. 

Swing states are the key to winning enough electoral votes to win this election, so here's what you need to know so far about them:  

DECIDED - BUT SOME ARE BEING CHALLENGED:

Florida -  President Trump wins this battleground state with its 29 electoral votes. It's the biggest prize among the perennial battleground states. 

Arizona - According to the AP, Joe Biden wins Arizona with its 11 electoral votes. But other election experts are saying that race is still too close to call.

Ohio - Donald Trump has won in Ohio. This state is important because no Republican president has ever won the White House without carrying The Buckeye State's 18 electoral votes.

Wisconsin - According to the AP, Joe Biden has won The Badger State and its 10 electoral votes.  The Trump campaign has announced it will ask for a recount. 

Michigan -  According to the AP, Biden has won The Wolverine State and its 16 electoral votes.  The Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit in a Michigan state court demanding access to locations where ballots are being counted.

UNDECIDED:

Pennsylvania - In 2016, The Keystone State surprised a lot of people when its citizens voted for Trump. The race is close again this year for the state's 20 electoral votes, according to pre-election polls.  Although, only one poll ultimately counts -- the one taken on Election Day at the ballot box. State officials have said it may take a few days before the final results are known. 

North Carolina - Both candidates and their stand-ins included frequent visits to North Carolina seeking its 15 electoral votes. This is not a red or blue state - it's now considered a purple state. Back in 2008, Barack Obama barely won by 0.3 percent and then lost the state in 2012 to Mitt Romney by 2 percent. Western Carolina University political scientist Chris Cooper told the Citizen Times, North Carolina was the most-important swing state in deciding the election.

Georgia - The Trump campaign and the Georgia Republican Party have filed a lawsuit against the Chatham County Board of Elections asking a judge to order the county to secure and account for ballots received after 7:00 pm on Election Day.
 

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