Joe Biden has been officially confirmed as the next President of the United States of America. This comes after he cleared the Electoral College’s 270 votes needed to take the US presidency.
The latest hit to Donald Trump’s dwindling hopes of staying in power came late on Monday as California electors confirmed they were rubber-stamping the Democrat’s win, after a massive five million margin last month in the USA’s largest state.
The Electoral College took on added importance this year because of Mr Trump’s refusal to concede the election, despite a comfortable win for Mr Biden. Presidential electors across the nation are casting the votes for the nation’s next president – normally considered a formality after votes are counted.
However, Mr Trump has continually made unfounded claims that the election was ‘rigged’, though countless legal challenges have been thrown out across the USA. There have been concerns about safety for the electors, an idea virtually unheard of in previous years. In Michigan, legislators from both parties reported receiving threats. Legislative offices there were closed on Monday over threats of violence
Even with the Electoral College’s confirmation of Mr Biden’s victory, some Republicans continued to refuse to result, but their opposition had no practical effect on the electoral process, with the Democrat to be sworn in on January 20.
Electors are casting paper ballots in gatherings in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The results will be sent to Washington and tallied in a January 6 joint session of Congress presided over by vice president Mike Pence. When all the votes are in, Mr Biden is expected to have 306 electoral votes to 232 for Mr Trump – but needs only 270 to win. In the popular vote count, Mr Biden beat Mr Trump by more than seven million votes nationwide.