(UPDATED with statements from President-elect Biden & Vice President-elect Harris) Joe Biden will be the next President of the United States of America.
The former Vice President defeated Donald Trump today after a hard fought and historic race framed as the most important election of a lifetime.
Kamala Harris, his running mate, made history as the first woman elected to the vice presidency. The junior senator from California shattered a glass ceiling that eluded Geraldine Ferraro in 1984 and Sarah Palin in 2008, not to mention Hillary Clinton’s 2016 POTUS bid.
Biden was declared President-elect by the AP and multiple networks with 273 electoral votes
“I am honored and humbled by the trust the American people have placed in me and in Vice President-elect Harris,” the soon-to-be 46th POTUS said in a statement Saturday morning. “In the face of unprecedented obstacles, a record number of Americans voted. Proving once again, that democracy beats deep in the heart of America,” he added
“With the campaign over, it’s time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation,” Biden said. “It’s time for America to unite. And to heal. We are the United States of America. And there’s nothing we can’t do, if we do it together.”
The newly minted POTUS-elect also took to social media:
America, I’m honored that you have chosen me to lead our great country.
The work ahead of us will be hard, but I promise you this: I will be a President for all Americans — whether you voted for me or not.
I will keep the faith that you have placed in me. pic.twitter.com/moA9qhmjn8
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) November 7, 2020
“This election is about so much more than @JoeBiden or me,” now Vice President-elect Harris said in a tweet of her own after the election was called. “It’s about the soul of America and our willingness to fight for it. We have a lot of work ahead of us. Let’s get started.”
Following the crippling consequences of the coronavirus pandemic on the nation this year, Biden’s accession to the White House came after days of battleground state ballot counts, Senate races, lawsuits and unsubstantiated allegations of fraud by the ex-Celebrity Apprentice host. Out of an inconclusive result on November 3, the call of Pennsyvania today sealed the deal for the Democrat.
Predicted by insiders and operatives on both sides even as polls showed a wide lead for Biden, the extremely time race will likely play itself out further in more legal action and bitter partisan divisions – especially with the Senate seemingly remaining in the GOP’s control.
Serving as Barack Obama’s Vice President from 2009 to 2017, Biden is only the second Catholic after John F. Kennedy to occupy the Oval Office in the Republic’s history. Marred by family loss, including the 2015 death from cancer of his eldest son and former Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, the career politician has often talked about how his faith has carried through his own stories of personal tragedy and hardship.
At 77-years of age, former Delaware Senator Biden is the oldest person ever elected to the presidency.
Although the former Veep led in the polls right up to the end, his third bid for the presidency looked to be in peril early in the primary season, when he trailed in Iowa and New Hampshire. However, a resounding victory in South Carolina was the jolt his campaign needed. By the time Super Tuesday rolled around three days later, two of Bieden’s more moderate rivals, South Bend, IN Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Amy Klobuchar, dropped out. They quickly endorsed Biden, as former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, faltered. By the the next month, even Biden’s chief rival Sen. Bernie Sanders was backing him.
Having secured the nomination, Biden’s campaign was prepared for a hard fought, close race, but the dynamics of the campaign changed considerably as COVID-19 raged across the country, forcing widespread closures and lockdowns. As America tragically led the world in confirmed cases and more than 230,000 Americans died from the virus, the ex-VP’s campaign throughout contrasted their approach to the pandemic, rooted in science, and seemed to benefit by Trump’s carnival-like approach to communication of the crisis.
With nail-biter of an Election Night and the fallout in the immediate days Biden’s victory today will generate a sigh of relief in Hollywood, which showered his campaign with donations, support and endorsements.
In the waning days of the campaign, figures like Harrison Ford and Eminem lent their names to pro-Biden spots. And even though the coronavirus forced Biden to hold virtual events, it didn’t hurt his fundraising. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, showbiz sources gave more than $10 million to Biden’s campaign, compared to just $1.1 million to Trump.
Of course, pinned in by partisan realities and a certain further fight with Trump during what would be a transition under normal circumstances, now getting ready for the hard job of governing begins for President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.