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electoral college vote

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Joe Biden’s presidential election victory was confirmed by the US Electoral College.

In a speech after the announcement, the president-elect said US democracy had been “pushed, tested and threatened” and “proved to be resilient, true and strong”.

He condemned President Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the result.

Later Russian President Vladimir Putin became one of the last world leaders to congratulate Joe Biden on his victory.

Moscow had said it would wait for the official results before doing so. Most other national leaders contacted Joe Biden days after the vote on November 3.

Confirmation by the Electoral College was one of the steps required for Joe Biden to take office.

Democrat Joe Biden won November’s contest with 306 Electoral College votes to Republican Donald Trump’s 232.

Donald Trump, who shows few signs of conceding, has not commented. Shortly after the Electoral College’s vote, the president announced on Twitter the departure of Attorney General William Barr, who had said there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the election, despite President Trump’s claims.

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Speaking in Delaware, Joe Biden praised “ordinary men and women” who had refused to be bullied, referring to the president’s efforts to question and overturn the results, involving legal challenges which have been rejected by courts across the country.

He described the efforts as “a position so extreme we’ve never seen it before”.

“Respecting the will of the people is at the heart of our democracy, even when we find those results hard to accept,” he said.

“The flame of democracy was lit in this nation a long time ago,” he added.

“And we know that nothing not even a pandemic or an abuse of power can extinguish that flame.”

Joe Biden said it was time to “turn the page, as we’ve done throughout our history, to unite, to heal”.

But he warned that, with the coronavirus pandemic continuing to ravage the US, there would be difficult months ahead.

“There is urgent work in front of us,” Joe Biden said.

“Getting this pandemic under control and getting the nation vaccinated against this virus.”

Joe Biden stressed the importance of immediate economic help that was “so badly needed by so many Americans who are hurting today” and rebuilding the economy to be “better than it ever was”.

He was speaking as the coronavirus death toll in the US rose above 300,000.

Normally the electors do not get that much attention but this year, after uncertainty generated by a raft of challenges to results in Democrat-won states by the Trump campaign, the state-by-state vote was in the spotlight.

Solidly Democrat California, with its 55 electors, was one of the last states to vote on December 14 and took Joe Biden across the 270-vote threshold required to win the presidency.

Heightened security had been put in place in some states, including Michigan and Georgia, ahead of voting, which took place in state capitals and Washington DC.

In Michigan – a key swing state Joe Biden won – legislative offices in the state capital Lansing were closed due to “credible” threats of violence.

The vote at the capitol building went ahead peacefully although a group of Republicans tried to enter the building to hold their own vote and were turned away.

Donald Trump has won the Electoral College vote being certified as president, despite a last-ditch effort to deny him the White House.

Six weeks after winning the polls, Donald Trump has secured the 270 votes needed to formalize his victory.

Electors had been flooded with emails, letters and phone calls urging them not to support Donald Trump.

The process is usually a formality, but was beset this year by claims Russian hackers tried to sway the public vote.

Texas ultimately put Donald Trump over the 270 threshold, despite two of its electors voting against him.

Photo AP

According to the New York Times, four Democratic electors also cast their votes for someone other than Hillary Clinton.

The result will be officially announced on January 6 in a special joint session of Congress.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence hailed Donald Trump on Twitter as the results came in: “Congratulations to @realDonaldTrump; officially elected President of the United States today by the Electoral College!”

The movement to block Donald Trump had fought hard to convince Republican electors to abandon their party’s candidate.

Thousands of anti-Trump protesters had gathered at state capitols across the country.

In Pennsylvania, over 200 demonstrators braved sub-zero temperatures, chanting, “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA!” and “No treason, no Trump!'”

In Maine, protesters beat drums and waved signs saying, “Don’t let Putin Pick Our President,” – a reference to allegations that Kremlin-backed hackers tried to sway the election in Donald Trump’s favor.

The Electoral College was set up by the US founding fathers as a compromise between allowing Congress and the people to elect the president.

Technically, Americans cast votes on Election Day for electors, not the candidates themselves.us-electoral-college

The electors are mostly elected officials or party functionaries whose names are not on the ballot. They are generally unknown to the public apart from one or two exceptions such as former President Bill Clinton, who was a New York elector in 2016.

There are 538 electors in all, one for each member of Congress. A candidate needs to take at least 270 electoral votes – half of the total plus one – to win the White House.

In 2016, Donald Trump won 306 electors from 30 states.

If no candidate reaches 270 in the Electoral College, the House of Representatives must vote on the next president.


Saturday Night Live began their weekly show with the defeated Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney drowning his sorrows – with milk.

Jason Sudeikis reprised his role as Mitt Romney during the cold open, sneaking dairy products on the back of his expansive balcony.

“Darn it all to heck,” he began.

Numerous members of his family – including Kate McKinnon as his wife Ann and Taran Killam as his sons Tag, Matt, and Josh – came outside to try and comfort him, to no avail. Taran Killam as Tag said that his father’s loss made him want to “punch America in the face”.

SNL took it aim on the Republican presidential candidate, after he lost the Electoral College vote tally 332 to 206 in Tuesday’s election. In the skit, Mitt Romney’s family was throwing a dignified post-election soiree, but Jason Sudeikis had retired to the balcony to chug Vitamin D milk.

Mitt Romney himself was pictured with a gallon of chocolate milk following the disappointing loss.

Jason Sudeikis’ son, Taran Killam as Tag Romney, came out to ask what more he wanted to accomplish.

“I have so much I want to do,” Jason Sudeikis said.

“I want to find out how mayonnaise is made.”

After “cracking open” another carton of milk, Taran Killam as Matt comes out, begging his father to come into the house.

“Paul Ryan is doing feats of strength in the living room,” he said.

Saturday Night Live began their weekly show with the defeated Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney drowning his sorrows with milk

Saturday Night Live began their weekly show with the defeated Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney drowning his sorrows with milk

Jason Sudeikis responded with vitriol.

“I would’ve liked to see him carry Wisconsin.”

A concerned Taran Killam then asked: “Have you been drinking? You smell like a dairy.”

Jason Sudeikis offers his son a drink, but Taran Killam sounds horrified.

“I’m only 38!” he said.

A third son, Josh, tries to entice his father into the party.

“Donald Trump is doing a very amusing thing where he’s racist,” Taran Killam said.

But it’s not until Kate McKinnon comes out again that Jason Sudeikis really gets fired up. He kisses her on the lips, causing Kate McKinnon to say in shock: “My, oh my, what has gotten into you?”

Jason Sudeikis responds: “Oh, I don’t know, about 10 gallons of milk.”

On Weekend Update, Seth Meyers celebrated “four…more…years…of gridlock”, showing pictures of Republicans Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner.

Noting how the president won many unemployed and student voters, Seth Meyers noted: “Basically, Obama became president the same way Budweiser became the king of beer.”

Seth Meyers also commented on the David Petraeus scandal, noting the name of biographer Paula Broadwell’s biography on him, entitled All In.

“When they first started working on the book, it was called <<Just The Tip>>.”

Seth Meyers was joined by Jay Pharoah, playing the newly re-elected President Obama. Asked if he was surprised by the result, Jay Pharoah responded: “A little. Come on Republicans, what happened? This was yours to win!

“Five-dollar gas, eight percent unemployment, I even gave you a first-debate head start! and on top of that, I’m Black.”

But Jay Pharoah said that as a second-term president, he wasn’t going to concede to those who were against him.

“Look out!” he said.

“From here on out, we do it my way! Republicans don’t want to talk of immigration? Fine. Meanwhile, a gay Hispanic woman is born every 15 seconds.”

Speaking of what has traditionally been a bipartisan dead end between him and Boehner, he said: “Fine, you wanna be unreasonable, fine let’s be unreasonable. The military? Gone! If you want to go to war with Iran, you have to send in Ted Nugent.”

The “president” seemed to be energized, and kept bouncing his shoulders. When Meyers commented, Jay Pharoah responded: “Seth, I’m in a good place.

“I want to thank Mitt Romney. Governor, I admire your tenacity, even though watching you run for president was like watching someone in roller skates trying to climb stairs.”

Though he said he was glad for four more years in office, Jay Pharoah’s closing remarks were over how awful his job is.

“Mainly, this is a terrible job and I hate it,” he said.

Also appearing on Weekend Update were a gay couple from Maine, which just passed a gay marriage law, and a drunk uncle to talk about the election recount.

Anne Hathaway, who plays Fantine in the upcoming movie version of Les Miserables, hosted for a third time, and Rhiannon was the musical guest.

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