Joe Biden all but declared the White House was his Friday night and said he had a real mandate for radical change as he made a brief appearance after plans for a grander victory party collapsed when the presidential race wasn’t called.
‘We’re going to win this race,’ he said inside the Chase Center in Wilmington, Delaware, speaking for seven minutes with running mate Kamala Harris at his side.
Biden hoped to celebrate a presidential victory on Friday but the counting process continues in the key states of Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada, where he is expanding his lead against President Donald Trump.
Pennsylvania alone would take him to 273 electoral college votes, while if Arizona and Nevada declare before the Keystone state, he would hit 270. If he takes all four – which appears very likely, he would have 302 electoral college votes, the same as Trump, but in contrast, a thumping popular vote majority of more than four million.
Pennsylvania could be called Saturday, as could Nevada and possibly Arizona; Georgia is so close that it is certain to have a recount.
Biden never mentioned Trump directly as he spoke but presented a drastic change of tone, saying that the ‘purpose of our politics isn’t total, unrelenting warfare.’
‘No, the purpose of our politics, the work of our nation, isn’t to fan the flames of conflict, but to solve problems, to guarantee justice, to give everybody a fair shot and to improve the lives of our people.’
‘We may be opponents – but we are not enemies. We are Americans,’ he continued. That didn’t stop him from boasting about wins, however.
‘One of the things I’m especially proud of is how well we’ve done all across America,’ he told a crowd of socially distanced reporters and staff. ‘We are going to be the first Democrat to win Arizona in 24 years. We are going to be the first Democrat to win Georgia in 28 years.’
‘And we re-built the Blue Wall in the middle of the country that crumbled just four years ago: Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin.’
Biden did not answer questions on whether Trump should concede. He did indicate he expects a result in the presidential contest on Saturday.
‘I hope to be talking to you tomorrow,’ he said.
He counselled patience as the vote tally continues and anxious Americans wait to learn who will be their next president.
‘I know watching these vote tallies on TV moves very slow and does as low it goes, it can be numbing. Never forget, the tallies aren’t just numbers, they were represent votes and voters. They exercised this fundamental right to have their voice heard.
‘What’s becoming clearer each hour, is that record number of Americans of all races, faiths, religions, chose change over more of the same. It given us a mandate for action on COVID, the economy, climate change, systemic racism. They made it clear, they want the country to come together, not continue to pull apart. The people spoke,’ he said.
Ironically, minutes after he finished speaking, it was revealed that the White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has become the latest person there to test positive for COVID-19.
Meadows, 61, was last in the White House on Thursday, CNN reported.
He would in theory be critical to a handover of power, but Biden indicated that he and Harris have started the transition process without saying whether they had received help from the Trump administration.
‘We are not waiting to get the work done. We are starting the process,’ he said.
And he vowed to bring the country together.
Biden said he believed people were sick of politics being so nasty.
‘No matter who you voted for, I am certain of one thing: the vast majority of those 150 million Americans who voted, they want to get the vitriol out of our politics. We are not going to agree on a lot of issues, but at least we can agree to be civil with one another. We have to put the anger and the demonization behind us it’s time for us to come together as a nation to heal. It’s not going to be easy, but we have to try.
‘My responsibility as president will be to represent the whole nation and I want you to know that I will work as hard for those who voted against me as those who voted for me. That is the job. That is the job. It’s called the duty of care for all Americans,’ he said.
Trump is yet to react to Biden’s remarks, however on Twitter he retweeted a series of posts supporting his claims of voter fraud and cheating as he spoke.
Among the tweets was one by co-founder Real Clear Politics Tom Bevan who criticized Fox News’s early call in Arizona, where Biden currently leads by a slim margin.
Bevan called the move ‘totally unnecessary’while pointing to how they waited hours to make a call in Florida when Trump was up by three points.
Biden is just 17 electoral votes shy of winning the presidency, while Trump trails behind with 213 electoral votes.
He currently has a 0.4% lead with 49.6% of the state’s total vote, compared to Trump’s 49.2%. The Associated Press waits for a candidate to have a 0.5% lead to call a race. Anything below that difference would require a recount, as per state law.
Earlier on Friday night, Justice Samuel Alito announced all Pennsylvania counties must segregate ballots that arrived after Election Day, following an appeal lodged by Republicans earlier to exclude those votes from the total count.
Click here to read more.
Source: Daily Mail