Biden secures early lead, but swing states still in play.
President Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden are engaged in a tight race to the White House being watched with bated breath across the world from India to Jamaica.
With Kamala Harris, the daughter of an Indian mother and Jamaican father on the Democratic ticket, people in India were glued to the tube as the race headed for a nail biting finish.
As midnight fell in the American capital, Biden had secured an early lead in electoral votes, but with swing states including Florida, North Carolina, Georgia and Pennsylvania, still in play networks were unwilling to hazard a guess
Biden picked up the first battleground state of the night, New Hampshire, a small prize that Trump tried to steal from Democrats.
Biden won California, the nation’s biggest electoral haul, and other predictable victories including Colorado and Virginia, two former battlegrounds that have become Democratic strongholds.
Trump’s wins included Kansas, North Dakota and other conservative bastions.
At midnight RealClear Politics gave 200 electoral votes to Biden-Harris team as against 165 to Trump-Mike Pence in the race to the 270 finish line.
In Wilmington, Delaware, cars were beginning to turn in to the drive-in party planned by Biden’s campaign, NPR reported.
One get-out-the-vote volunteer invited to the party told NPR she had been working in Philadelphia and thinks the former vice president will carry the state once absentee ballots are eventually counted.
NPR cited people close to the White House as saying late Tuesday they were bullish on Trump’s chances.
Trump invited guests to a party in the East Room that featured large televisions tuned to Fox News, NPR reported. It
Kellyanne Conway, who helped Trump win his first campaign, said in a tweet that “it feels like 2016,” and two former Trump White House officials also invoked the night the president shocked the world and won. “It feels like déjà vu,” one official said.
Trump adviser Jason Miller said, “We will win Florida,” and said he still feels good about Ohio. Barry Bennett, another Trump associate, noted that “GOP turnout is very big.”
With more than 100 million people having voted by postal ballot and early in-person voting, election officials have cautioned that the winner of the presidential election may still be unknown when election night is over.
Rules in some states don’t allow election workers to begin the labor-intensive work of processing mail-in ballots until Election Day.
And with a record number of voters casting their ballots by mail, the influx could delay final tallies for days.
In six particularly key states — Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — the margin of victory is expected to be slim, so it may be hard to know who won until their mail ballots are fully counted.