Biden, Harris Win
Wait...Not Over Yet, Trump Plans to Fight Back
Last updated 11/13/2020 at 3:39pm
The 2020 Election has sure been filled with a whirlwind of emotions – from numerous disagreements to a continuous fight to the finish line. Tensions continued to rise as the counting of ballots stretched over a few days, but on Nov. 7, the presidential race was called, and former Vice President Joseph R. Biden and Kamala Harris came out victorious, elected as the 46th President and Vice President, respectively, of the United States of America.
After securing Pennsylvania early that morning, Joe Biden secured 20 electoral votes, pushing him past the necessary 270 to win, defeating President Donald Trump, after the Associated Press called the race. He held a 30,952-vote lead after it determined that the remaining ballots left to be counted would not allow President Trump to catch up. He is the first incumbent president to lose reelection since George H.W. Bush in 1992. President-elect Biden received 290 electoral votes, while Trump secured 214.
Biden received more votes for a president compared to any other candidate in U.S. election history. He officially surpassed numbers of former President Barack Obama’s 2008 popular vote at around 8 a.m. EST on Nov. 4.
Vice President-elect Harris also makes history as the first black woman to become VP, and the first person of South Asian-descent elected VP, becoming the highest-ranking woman ever to serve in government.
Amid the celebrations of victory across the country, the fight is far from over. President Trump said in previous statements that he would fight back and said the people deserve a fair election. A peaceful transfer of power, forget about it.
In a statement, he said he will not concede, and added, “Beginning Monday (Nov. 9), our campaign will start prosecuting our case in court to ensure election laws are fully upheld and the rightful winner is seated.” As the days continued of ballot counting, he claimed fraud, after many states began to flip and numbers were too close. He also added, “The simple fact is this election is far from over. Joe Biden has not been certified as the winner of any states, let alone any of the highly contested states headed for mandatory recounts, or states where our campaign has valid and legitimate legal challenges that could determine the ultimate victor.”
Trump earlier repeated his unsupported allegations of election fraud and illegal voting on Twitter. One of his tweets, quickly flagged as potentially misleading by Twitter, claimed: “I WON THIS ELECTION, BY A LOT!”
Despite his claims, President-elect Biden put out a statement, “With the campaign over, it’s time to put the anger and harsh rhetoric behind us come together as a nation. 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.” He added on his Twitter page, “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.”
He addressed the American people in Wilmington, Delaware in his first speech after winning the election, “Let’s give each other a chance. It’s time to put away the harsh rhetoric, we have to stop treating our opponents as our enemies. They are not our enemies. They are Americans.”
Biden also added that they were prepared for this type of reaction from President Trump and his campaign, and are prepared to fight.
Harris addressed all and said, “While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last. Because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.”
Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, will also be a first for the nation. After Harris is sworn into office in January, Emhoff will become the nation’s first Second Gentleman of the United States.
No winner was called Nov. 3 as Democrats failed to land the decisive early knockout blow they were hoping for, and Republicans hope for a “landslide” victory was out the door. Neither candidate conceded, both expressing the results would lean in their favor. Many states remained uncalled for, and Biden continued to lead the electoral votes. The last time the result was not clear within a few hours was in 2000, when the winner, George W. Bush, was not confirmed until a Supreme Court ruling was made a month later.
This election is exactly what many described it would be, and is surely one of the most monumental and defining elections in decades, determining the fate of America for the next four years.
The 2020 election is nothing remotely close to the 2016 election when Hillary Clinton conceded to Donald Trump in a razor-thin electoral marathon. Despite her Electoral College loss, she won the popular vote. But a newly-elected president was named.
The United States showed up with the highest electoral turnout in a century, and many waited in long lines at the polls to cast their votes, on top of an unprecedented number of people voting by mail amid the coronavirus pandemic.
As the presidential race began, Biden led quickly with a significant lead before Trump won key states, closing in on the gap. However, never managed to gain a lead. In many key states, election officials couldn’t start counting mail-in ballots until Election Day, while others have processed those already. Several key states were expected to finish counting by the end of Nov. 4 and Nov. 5.
In the midst of the counting of ballots, Trump requested many things – from a recount in Wisconsin to which his campaign could not do until counties finished their canvassing process, which will happen some time between now and Nov. 17, to halting the counts in Michigan and Pennsylvania.
He added that there was “major fraud” happening, including “surprise ballot dumps” causing his lead in several states to disappear.
Michigan was called for Biden, and if Arizona held, which it did, placed him on the cusp of 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency. He needed one more state with at least three in his reach – Nevada, Georgia or Pennsylvania. Nevada was in his favor, despite a long anticipated count, however, not Pennsylvania or Georgia.
But with 2020 doing 2020 things, Biden managed to flip Georgia with roughly a little over 10,500 votes, as well as Pennsylvania, two states that were largely in favor of Trump.
Under Pennsylvania law, a recount is automatic when the margin between two candidates in a statewide race is less than 0.5 percentage points. Biden’s lead over Trump was on track to stay outside of the margin.
In Georgia, Doug Collins will lead the Trump recount effort, where President-elect Joe Biden holds a razor-thin lead. According to The AP, Biden currently leads Trump by over 10,000 votes, or 49.5 percent to 49.3 percent, with 99 percent of precincts reporting in Georgia, which hasn’t vote for a Democratic presidential candidate in nearly 30 years.
As said by ABC News political director Rick Klein, no one wants this, but acknowledge a possibility that there are voting irregularities that tie up certain results in certain precincts, counties or states, which prevent a clear winner, in which, legal battles ensue and congress or the next Supreme Court could intervene. Then knowing who the next president could be delayed for a few weeks.
Even in that scenario, things should hopefully be sorted out by Dec. 14, when the Electoral College convenes and electors from each state cast their votes.
On Jan. 6, Congress tallies those Electoral College votes and makes the final decision. But this will be ongoing.
Many see this as a victory and a cause for celebration, but again, it is not over. With Trump fighting back, it can be a long process until Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are officially President and Vice President. We may have to wait weeks for this race to be over.
(The Democrats retained control of the House for two more years, while the Senate remained Republican-controlled).
**NOTE: Information regarding the presidential election above is as of print time, Nov. 9, 4 p.m.
In one of the most watched races in San Diego County, Republican Darrell Issa and Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar went head-to-head for the 50th Congressional District seat. On Nov. 7, Issa secured the win, claiming 54% of the votes over Campa-Najjar’s 46%.
The seat was left vacant in January, after the resignation of Duncan Hunter Jr. in light of a corruption scandal.
The 50th congressional district encompasses the central and northeastern parts of San Diego County and a small part of Riverside County. This area includes Santee, Lakeside, Poway, Ramona, La Mesa, Alpine, Winter Gardens, Borrego Springs and Spring Valley.
Campa-Najjar led the way, hoping he could swing the district blue, but as the votes continued to be counted, Issa managed to gain and maintain the lead, despite predicting a “decisive victory on Election Night, which did not happen.
In a statement, Campa-Najjar thanked his supporters, as well as congratulated Issa on the win, and added, “I look forward to working with him in service of the district I love.”
Issa served nine terms in the 49th district before announcing he would not run for re-election in 2018.
Of the three Borrego Springs races (Borrego Springs Fire Protection District and Borrego Springs Unified School District), only the Borrego Water District was an election as the other two were unanimous with the number of candidates running filling in the respective positions. Three candidates were running for two seats on the Board of Directors, where Diane Johnson retained her seat on the board. She is joined by Tammy Baker.
Below is a summary of the ballot propositions that passed:
Prop. 17: Restore Former Felon Vote, Passed with an unofficial 59% of the vote.
Proposition 17 restores the rights of felons on parole to vote, changing the state Constitution to give the vote to an estimated 50,000 people, who supporters said have paid their debt to society and should be able to choose their representatives and future policies. California felons who had completed their prison sentences had been long denied the right to vote until they finished parole.
Supporters of Prop 17 have also pointed out that a recent parole commission report that found felons with voting rights were less likely to commit future crimes.
Others say the right to vote shouldn’t be granted until parolees have proven they’re rehabilitated and allowing paroles to vote denies justice to victims. Republican State Sen. Jim Nielsen, who said restoring these rights early to felons would be like a “slap in the face” to their victims who should have the assurance that criminals are punished fully.
Prop 17 also allows parolees to run for office if they’re registered to vote and haven’t been convicted of perjury or bribery.
Meanwhile, a separate ballot measure that would allow some 17-year-olds to vote in primary elections did not pass.
Prop. 22: App-Based Drivers as Contractors, Not Employees, 58% to 42%
Proposition 22 is one of the most controversial bills of the 2019 Legislative session. When it passed last year, AB 5 established criteria that essentially made it more difficult for app-based companies to classify workers as independent contractors instead of employees. In May, the state sued Uber and lyft, alleging they misclassified drivers as independent contractors under the new labor law.
Considering Prop 22 – basically changes the classification rules for the gig economy and designates drivers as independent contractors, who are entitled under state law to the same protections afforded to employees, like minimum wage, overtime and worker’s comp. But Prop 22 includes a mandate that app-based drivers are provided with benefits like minimum compensation, healthcare subsidies, vehicle insurance and training. The ballot measure overrode AB 5 that was signed in Sept. 2019, on the question of whether app-based drivers are employees or independent contractors.