Biden takes Georgia to solidify US election victory

US President-elect Joe Biden has won the state of Georgia, the BBC projects, the first Democratic candidate to do so since 1992.

The win solidifies Mr Biden’s victory, giving him a total of 306 votes in the electoral college, the system the US uses to choose its president.

President Donald Trump is projected to win North Carolina, reaching 232 votes.

Mr Trump, who has refused to concede, has for the first time alluded to a possible new administration in January.

Looking subdued, the president stopped short of conceding the race and did not mention Mr Biden by name in his first official appearance since the election during a briefing of his coronavirus task force.

“This administration will not be going to a lockdown,” Mr Trump said at the White House Rose Garden, as the country faces growing outbreaks of the virus. “Hopefully… whatever happens in the future – who knows which administration will be. I guess time will tell.”

The president did not take questions from reporters. Pressure is growing on Mr Trump, a Republican, to acknowledge Mr Biden’s victory and help prepare the transition from one administration to another.

Georgia and North Carolina were the last states to be called in the race for the White House. Mr Biden’s electoral votes equal the tally Mr Trump achieved in his victory over Hillary Clinton in 2016. At the time Mr Trump referred to it as “a landslide”.

A manual recount is to be carried out in Georgia because of the narrow margin between the two candidates, but the Biden team said they did not expect it to change the results there.

President Trump has launched a flurry of legal challenges in key states and levelled unsubstantiated allegations of widespread electoral fraud. His team dropped a lawsuit in Arizona on Friday after it became clear his rival’s lead was unassailable.

Biden’s victory has not yet been made official, and his transition team have not been given access to federal agencies and funding needed to ensure a smooth transition of power.

The Trump administration’s denial of access to classified security briefings could affect Mr Biden’s ability to govern, Biden spokesperson Jen Psaki said.

“You need real-time information to deal with crises of the moment,” she said, highlighting the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. “It’s imperative that our team and our experts have that access”. (Courtesy BBC)


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