Electoral College votes Joe Biden as next US President

PTI, Dec 15, 2020, 9:21 AM IST

Washington: The Electoral College has voted Joe Biden as the President and Indian-origin Senator Kamala Harris as the Vice President of the United States, bringing to an end the legal battle unleashed by incumbent Donald Trump who has been alleging widespread voter fraud in the presidential elections.

In accordance with the Constitution and federal law, the Electoral College cast its votes on Monday for the President, the elections for which were held on November 3. The Electors met in their respective states following certification of the results.

The development brings to an end the legal battle unleashed by President Donald Trump against the elections, which he lost both in terms of the popular vote as well as the majority in the 538-member electoral college. Typically, the meeting of the Electoral College is merely a formality. However, it received international attention because of unsubstantiated allegations of massive voter fraud by Trump.

“The presidential election took place over a month ago. The result is not in doubt. In almost any other year, both major parties would have fully and publicly accepted the will of the American people by now. The peaceful passing of the torch: a hallmark of our grand democracy,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said.

“After no evidence of widespread voter fraud was found in the country; after state election officials corroborated the accuracy of the results in every state in the country; after the Trump campaign’s legal team racked up an astonishing win-loss record of 1 and 59; after the Supreme Court summarily dismissed two ludicrous efforts by Republicans to invalidate the results in swing states; will the Republican Party in Congress—here in the Senate—finally acknowledge the results of an election that was determined over a month ago?” he asked.

Hillary Clinton, former secretary of state and 2016 presidential candidate, voted for Biden as an electoral college member in New York.

“I believe we should abolish the Electoral College and select our president by the winner of the popular vote, same as every other office,” she said.

“But while it still exists, I was proud to cast my vote in New York for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris,” Clinton added.

Results of the electoral college votes rolled in from across the country throughout the day.

Congressman Dan Kildee, chief deputy whip of House Democratic Caucus, said, “Despite continued attempts by the President and his Republican enablers to spread conspiracy theories and overturn the election, today’s actions make clear that the will of the people will not be subverted.”

“This election is over, and President-elect Joe Biden won our state by over 150,000 votes––14 times Donald Trump’s 2016 margin. Americans must come together to support our new president and unite to defeat the coronavirus,” he said.

Republican Senator Rob Portman said, “The orderly transfer of power is a hallmark of our democracy, and although I supported President Trump, the Electoral College vote today makes clear that Joe Biden is now President-elect.”

Trump has not conceded the defeat in the elections yet. He filed several unsuccessful lawsuits against election results alleging that there were massive voter fraud and electoral malpractice.

“I think we need to respect this process the founding fathers established, and we must respect the will of the voters. As I’ve said previously, the Trump campaign had every right to pursue recounts and legal challenges. That has now happened over the past six weeks, and although there were instances of fraud and irregularities, it has not been shown to be widespread enough to change the result of the election,” Portman said.

“States must take seriously the proven examples of fraud and irregularities, prosecute anyone who engaged in it, and review voting systems to maintain the integrity of our elections. The transition process and briefings for the Biden team began three weeks ago at the direction of President Trump, and I commend him for that,” he said.

Senator Jeff Merkley said as the Electoral College voted Joe Biden the next President of the United States, it is time for Trump and all who have enabled him to “end their attack on our democracy”.

“Today”s electoral college votes confirm what we”ve known for weeks – what SCOTUS declared and what a record number of voters decided: Joe Biden won. Republicans must end their attempts to undermine this election and get to work for the American people,” Senator Ben Cardin said.

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