A few days after the November 3 election, many have declared Joe Biden to be the winner, and the next president of the United States. Is this true? In fact, it’s not quite accurate – not yet, anyway.
Usually, the winner of the election is quickly called as it becomes obvious who has the most votes. From time to time, the results aren’t so clear, and candidates choose to question the outcome. This can involve asking for votes to be recounted in certain states or taking disputed states to court. This year’s election is proving to be one of the complicated ones – even though many are already claiming that Biden has won.
Many newspapers and television networks have declared Biden to be the winner of the election. Based on the current vote counts, Biden has won 51.5% of the popular vote, as well as 279 Electoral College votes – nine more than the 270 needed to win. However, Donald Trump and his campaign have several complaints about the vote count, which will take a while to sort out, and could even change the result of the election.
Biden and Harris Declare Victory
Biden appeared before a crowd on Saturday, November 7, to deliver an acceptance speech declaring victory and outline his vision for the next four years. Speaking in Delaware, he said:
“I’ve long talked about the battle for the soul of America. We must restore the soul of America. Our nation is shaped by the constant battle between our better angels and our darkest impulses. And what presidents say in this battle matters. It’s time for our better angels to prevail. Tonight, the whole world is watching America. And I believe at our best, America is a beacon for the globe.”
Also speaking at the event was Biden’s running mate, Senator Kamala Harris. She also gave a victory speech, paying tribute to her mother, an Indian immigrant, for her role in helping Harris become the first woman of color to be nominated for vice president:
“When she came here from India at the age of 19, maybe she didn’t quite imagine this moment. But she believed so deeply in an America where a moment like this is possible. So, I’m thinking about her and about the generations of women — Black women. Asian, White, Latina, and Native American women throughout our nation’s history who have paved the way for this moment tonight.”
The Reality – Results Not Yet Settled
Despite all the declarations that Biden and Harris won, only election officials actually have the power to formally announce the result of a vote.
The final victor likely will not be official for a few weeks, as the Trump campaign has disputed the results in several states, claiming that improper or even fraudulent practices have interfered with a fair vote.
The campaign has already started taking legal action in several states, and there are likely to be recounts in Wisconsin and Georgia.
Will these legal disputes change the result of the election? Nobody knows yet.
Some World Leaders Congratulate Biden and Some Wait
As well as the news media, leaders around the world have started congratulating Biden and Harris, even though their victory is not official. The leaders of nations including France, South Korea, Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, Britain, and Ireland quickly sent Biden their congratulations.
However, not all countries have been so quick to send their well wishes. “We consider it proper to wait for the official results,” said Russia, which has refused to congratulate anybody on winning the election until the final result is settled.