Biden called for unity and understanding in his hometown of Wilmington, Delaware, at an unusual time in American history, when the current White House resident showed no sign of intent to give up his rival and continued to tweet that he had won the election while making unfounded accusations that the election had been stolen from him.
After jogging on stage in a mask, Biden repeated his promise to strive for unity, not separation. He promised to rule according to his belief that he would not see the blue and red states, but only the United States.
When the campaign began almost two years ago, it would be unusual to think that Americans would come to a victory rally wearing masks. The fact that they had to do so, and in the race to the outside world in November, was reminiscent of the moment of national extremes that Biden and Harris will inherit in January.
Biden noted that he was striving for the highest position of a nation to restore the soul of America, to restore the backbone of the nation, the middle class, and to ensure that America is once again respected around the world. He admitted that black voters crossed the finishing line in the primary and general elections, increasing voter turnout in key states.
Most striking, however, was Biden’s attempt to convince Trump voters, who also came out in large numbers on election day, because he had the difficult task of leading a highly polarized nation.
For those of you who voted for President Trump, I understand today’s disappointment. I’ve lost a few times myself. But now we have to give ourselves a chance, Biden said. It’s time to put the hard rhetoric aside, lower the temperature, see each other again, listen to each other. And in order to make progress, we must stop treating our opponents as enemies.
Referring to Scripture, he added that it is time to heal in America.
The speech marked a tried and tested turning point between a difficult campaign and the traditional calls for unity after difficult elections. It also meant the tangible beginning of the process of handing over power to the newly elected president of the defeated, who neglected tradition at every stage. And it was a rare moment in the last five years that Trump was not the dominant figure on the national political scene.
The Biden Campaign recognized the historical significance of the moment and opened the event with Kamala Harris, the elected vice-president, presenting her candidacy for the vice-presidency. Harris will be the first woman – and the first woman of color – to act as vice president.
Referring to the legacy of the late Georgian Congressman John Lewis, Harris praised the campaigners for their record rise at a time when this election was about our democracy itself, and said they chose hope, science and truth in electing Biden as their next president.
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She also thanked Biden for his courage in overcoming one of the biggest obstacles in our country and choosing a woman as vice president.
I may be the first woman in this office, but I won’t be the last, because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a land of opportunity.
And the children of our country, regardless of gender, our country has sent you a clear message: Dream with ambition, act with conviction, and see yourself in a way that others cannot, simply because they have never seen it before. And we’ll cheer for you every step of the way.
As Biden and Harris prepared for these victorious speeches, jubilant celebrations erupted in major American cities as supporters took to the streets – shouting, singing, dancing and waving flags as the drivers honked – to celebrate victory and the end of President Trump’s presidency.
The festivities began Saturday in front of the White House when Trump played golf in Virginia. The president, who was brooding, returned in a procession through the crowds at Pennsylvania Avenue in 1600 after stumbling across the intersection. There was no evidence that Trump would extend the traditional invitation to the President-elect to visit the White House because he continued to falsely claim that the election had been stolen from him.
Rejection of concession offer
While Mr Trump has not yet given any public sign of his willingness to relinquish power, Jared Kouchner, the president’s son-in-law and his senior advisor, approached him for concessions in the election, two sources told CNN on Saturday.
Trump has not rebutted the election results, at least not in private, according to sources on CNN. But he continues to insist that his lawyers engage in lawsuits that delay the official certification of results. Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, who works from home after a positive coronavirus test, discussed the next steps with the legal team on Saturday.
Once again, Saturday’s trump cards were unnecessarily pushed onto the ballot papers, tilting the election in Biden’s favour and repeating on Twitter the lie that he had won the election. He claimed that bad things happened during the elections that his observers were not allowed to see, although there is no evidence that GOP observers were systematically excluded from the process throughout the country.
71,000,000 legal votes. The best thing for a incumbent president! Trumpf tweeted on Saturday afternoon. (As the vote count on Saturday went for both men, Biden won 74.5 million votes and Trump 70.4 million).
Mr Trump’s campaign team is expected to continue its efforts to challenge the election results with the next round of legal action on Monday, but so far it has not been able to present credible evidence of electoral fraud that could change the outcome of the race.
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It is not clear how isolated cases of irregularities, even if discovered, would add sufficient legal problems to the case to bring it before the Supreme Court, or call into question the integrity of an election in which Biden ultimately seems to win with sufficient votes, which would probably not lead to challenging a national result in the individual states.
The legal front is increasingly seen as a gathering point for supporters who want to prevent Biden’s presidency from being seen as a declaration of defeat by Trump’s supporters and the president himself. Famous Republican lawyer Benjamin Ginsberg said there was no indication that the president had a case that could change the election results. He told CNN spokesman Erin Burnett that there was still no evidence of systematic fraud or irregularities to challenge the results in either state.
The White House said the public probably wouldn’t see the president on his return from a Saturday night round of golf, but that he was close to the crowd asking for his tee-off in Washington, D.C.
A joyous meeting took place across the White House at the Black Lives Matter Plaza, near where Trump’s government angered the activists in June by evacuating peaceful protesters with pepper spray, flash and rubber bullets during a demonstration against police violence, just before Trump went to take a photo, holding the Bible in front of the historic Saint Mary’s Church.
Although Mr. Trump may not accept that he lost, many world leaders did so on Saturdays by sending congratulatory messages to Biden and Harris.
As a sign of how quickly the global reality is changing after the American elections, some leaders who cared about Trumps, including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, were quick to congratulate the newly elected president.
In perhaps the most remarkable message, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Maudie, who spoke at major campaign events in India and the United States, twittered a picture of Biden whispered in his ear at a previous meeting. Maudie sent a separate tweet in which he congratulated Harris and celebrated his Indian descent. She said her success was a source of great pride for Native Americans and their Hittis, the Tamil term for the caress used by the elected vice president.
Difficult administrative task
Many prominent Republicans fell silent on Saturday, but there were a few exceptions, including former Governor Jeb Bush of Florida, who lost the 2016 nomination, and Senator Mitt Romney of Utah, who was nominated Republican in 2012. Trump’s inability to resign and congratulate his opponent may have removed the normal courtesy of the Republican leaders, who remain intimidated by him and depend on the presidential basis for their prospects of re-election in 2024.
While Biden has done an impressive job sending the outgoing president and restoring the Democratic Blue Wall in the Midwest, he is aware of the enormous challenges he faces in running the country, given his subtle victories in key states. Moreover, despite the fervent hope of defeating Trump and its parties in the elections, the Democrats have in fact lost seats in the American House of Representatives, even though they retain the majority. Despite the massive fundraising, the Democrats also failed to make the most of the break in the GOP-controlled Senate. The balance of power in the chamber depends on two likely re-elections in Georgia in January.
During his campaign, Biden set ambitious goals – from a fundamental overhaul of tax legislation to aggressive efforts to combat the climate crisis and expand Obamacare – while trying to maintain the unity of his party and inspire the loyalty of the Progressive Democrats who supported Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.
The pressure on the left side was already visible on Saturday. I think he has a very, very strong mandate, Sanders said in an interview with CNN Anderson Cooper. It’s time for the workers to be heard and for their pain to be heard.
But the political reality of a still polarized nation, a divided government in Washington and the complexity of solving the national crisis in Covida 19 are likely to reinforce Biden’s ambitions.
In his speech on Saturday night, Biden promised to bring the pandemic under control, so Americans can regain their most precious moments, from visiting grandchildren to weddings and graduations. He stressed that on Monday he will appoint a group of leading scientists and experts to his Coronavirus Task Force, which will develop an action plan to be launched immediately after the inauguration in January.
The Task Force is led by three co-chairs: former Chief Surgeon Vivek Murty, former FDA commissioner David Kessler and Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, university lecturer in medicine and epidemiology at Yale University School of Medicine, CNN reported Saturday.
Biden’s plan to fight the virus, he said, will be rooted in science and based on compassion, empathy and care.
As throughout the campaign, Biden talked about the pain many Americans experienced during the pandemic, referring to the loss of his own son, Bo Biden, a former attorney general at Delaware who died of brain cancer at the age of 46.
Biden quoted a Catholic hymn – On Eagle Wings – which, according to him, meant a lot to his family and Bo Biden, because he recorded the faith that sustained him.
I hope this year can bring comfort and relief to the 230,000 Americans who have lost a loved one to this terrible virus. Biden said my heart was given to each and every one of you.
According to CNN’s Arlette Saenz, there was another Bo recall when fireworks lit up in front of the Chase Center: One of the songs played during the show was A Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay, one of Bo Biden’s favorite bands.
On Saturday, former President Barack Obama outlined the difficulties his former vice president would face when he asked Americans to put aside their political differences and give him a chance, along with your support.
When he enters the White House in January, he will face a series of extraordinary challenges that the new president has never experienced before: a raging pandemic, an uneven economic and judicial system, an endangered democracy and an endangered climate, Obama said in a statement. I know he will do this work based on the interests of every American, whether or not he had the right to vote.
Obama noted that the election results at all levels show that the country is still deeply and bitterly divided.
Not just Joe and Kamala, but each of us will have to do our part – get out of our comfort zone, listen to others, turn away the heat, and find a common language from which to move forward.
This story has been updated.
Caitlan Collins contributed to this report.