WASHINGTON (AP) – Former Vice President Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump in the 2020 election Saturday to become the 46th president of the United States.
The Democrat will lead a nation gripped by the historic pandemic and a confluence of economic and social turmoil. Biden’s victory came after more than three days of uncertainty as election officials sorted through a surge of mail-in votes that delayed the processing of some ballots. Biden crossed 270 Electoral College votes with a win in Pennsylvania.
Biden, 77, staked his candidacy less on any distinctive political ideology than on galvanizing a broad coalition of voters around the notion that Trump posed an existential threat to American democracy. The strategy proved effective, resulting in pivotal victories in Michigan and Wisconsin as well as Pennsylvania, onetime Democratic bastions that had flipped to Trump in 2016.
Biden also had a margin of more than four million votes on Trump, which could grow as votes are still being counted in some states. Trump is the first incumbent president to lose reelection since Republican George H.W. Bush in 1992. He issued a statement Saturday morning saying he would not concede until all legal ballots are counted, alleging Biden “has not been certified as the winner of any states,” and his campaign will begin a prosecution case on Monday
Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris also made history as the first woman, first Black person, and first person of South Asian descent to become vice president. The former presidential candidate and senator from California will be the highest-ranking woman in American government. Her husband, lawyer Douglas Emhoff, will become the nation’s first ‘second gentleman.’ Former second lady Jill Biden, who has a doctoral degree in educational leadership, plans to continue her teaching career while First Lady of the United States.
Biden issued a statement Saturday morning, saying he “will be a President for all Americans – whether you voted for me or not.” He campaigned pledging large government responses in contrast to the Trump administration’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, race relations and more.