American former Vice President Joe Biden has called for patience and unity as the United States continues to count votes from the presidential election.
Biden spoke Friday from Wilmington, Delaware as his running mate Kamala Harris stood nearby. “We’re going to win this race with a clear majority, with the nation behind us,” he said.
But, he asked Americans to be patient and wait for all the votes to be counted.
Biden said that he had won a mandate from voters to solve major problems facing the country, including the coronavirus crisis, the economy, climate change, and racism. He called for an end to political warring in the United States.
“We may be opponents, but we’re not enemies. We’re Americans,” he said.
Biden expanded his lead over President Donald Trump in the states of Pennsylvania and Nevada. He also has a lead in Georgia and Arizona. Trump is ahead in North Carolina and Alaska.
Biden currently leads with 253 electoral votes. Trump has 214. Biden only needs to win Pennsylvania with its 20 electoral votes to win the required 270 Electoral College votes and the presidency.
The Trump campaign said in a statement Friday, “this election is not over.” Trump himself spent the day on Twitter, accusing Pennsylvania’s governor, election officials, and state courts of illegal actions in the voting process. He wrote, “U.S. Supreme Court should decide!” Some of Trump’s posts were labeled by the social media site as “misleading.”
The Trump campaign has since asked the U.S. Supreme Court to set aside a very small number of late-arriving mail ballots in Pennsylvania. State election officials have already done that voluntarily.
Friday night, Biden led Trump by nearly 29,000 votes in Pennsylvania, 22,000 in Nevada, and 30,000 in Arizona. In Georgia, state officials said Biden’s lead of more than 4,000 votes could result in a recount.
Across the nation, Biden has received more than half of the votes that have been counted. He has more than 74 million votes, a record amount in American elections. Trump has about 70 million votes.
Late Friday, Trump wrote on Twitter, “Joe Biden should not wrongfully claim the office of the President.” The president, however, had claimed victory on election night, November 3.
Speaking from the White House on Thursday, Trump repeated his claim that he had won the election. He accused Democrats of trying to “steal” the election. Trump said, “If you count the legal votes, I easily win. If you count the illegal votes, they can try to steal the election from us.” He did not provide evidence of the existence of illegal votes or other claims of wrongdoing.
Several members of Trump’s own Republican Party were quick to denounce his comment.
Larry Hogan, the Republican governor of the state of Maryland, wrote on Twitter, “There is no defense for the President’s comments tonight undermining our Democratic process. America is counting the votes, and we must respect the results as we always have before.” He added, “No election or person is more important than our Democracy.”
Pat Toomey, a Republican Senator from Pennsylvania, told CBS News on Friday, “The president’s speech last night was very disturbing to me because he made very, very serious allegations without any evidence to support it.”
Mitch McConnell, the Republican Senate majority leader tweeted, “Every legal vote should be counted.” He added, “And the courts are here to apply the laws & resolve disputes.”
Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a Trump ally, told Fox News that he fully supported the president. Graham said he was providing money from his own campaign to help Trump’s legal efforts.
Trump’s campaign has also opened legal actions in Michigan, Georgia and Nevada and called for a recount of the votes in Wisconsin. Judges in Georgia and Michigan quickly dismissed Trump campaign lawsuits there on Thursday.
I’m Caty Weaver.
Hai Do wrote this story for Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.
Words in This Story
mandate – n. the power to act that voters give to elected leaders
undermine – v. to make something weaker or less effective
disturbing – adj. upsetting or troubling
allegation – n. a statement saying that someone has done something wrong