Former Vice President Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States, the Associated Press projected Saturday morning. He defeated President Donald Trump as the country waited anxiously for days for the race to be called.
Unlike the 2016 election, Biden earned more Electoral College and popular votes. The nearly 75 million votes he's accumulated are the most earned by a presidential candidate, surpassing the 69 million votes former President Barack Obama earned in 2008.
Trump is the first one-term president since George H.W. Bush lost to Bill Clinton in 1992.
Biden will be joined in the White House by Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, the United States senator from California who was the first Black woman to be elected attorney general and district attorney in California.
Biden and Harris' campaign focused on stopping the spread of COVID-19 to help families return to work and school. They also promised to build on the Affordable Care Act to expand access to affordable health care , according to their campaign website.
Biden won around 63% of the vote in Monroe County, according to unofficial results from the Monroe County Elections Board. However, Trump won the state with around 57% of the vote — near his 2016 margin.
The states not called by the Associated Press as of 11:30 a.m. Friday morning were Alaska, Nevada, North Carolina and Georgia. Arizona, where the AP projected a win by Biden, has not yet been called by CNN or the New York Times.
Biden made speeches around 12:45 a.m. and around 4:15 p.m. Wednesday saying he was confident he would win, but, unlike Trump, he did not claim victory. Both Trump and Biden spoke yesterday.
"Democracy is sometimes messy. It sometimes requires a little patience as well," Biden said in a speech Thursday afternoon. "That patience has been rewarded now for more than 240 years with a system of governance that's been the envy of the world."
No states were called for either candidate Thursday, but the AP projected Biden wins in Wisconsin and Michigan Wednesday, giving him 26 more votes in the Electoral College.
Both Georgia and Pennsylvania flipped in Biden's favor Friday morning as mail-in ballots continued to be counted. Trump had led those states since election night. Pennsylvania, and its 20 Electoral College votes, were enough to give Biden the 270 votes needed to win.
In his victory speech, Biden focused on the importance of uniting the nation and promised that he is dedicated to working with both Democrats and Republicans to help move the country forward.
“I sought this office to restore the soul of America,” Biden said. “I pledge to be a President who seeks not to divide but unify, who doesn’t see red states and blue states, only sees the United States.”
Biden also said that it was time for there to be more bipartisan work in government and said that for too long people have decided to not get along.
“It’s time to put away the harsh rhetoric, lower the temperature, see each other again, listen to each other again and to make progress we have to stop treating our opponents as our enemies,” Biden said. “They are not our enemies, they are Americans.”
Biden said he believes in the possibilities offered in this country, and that this was reflected in Harris being elected as the first woman of color vice president-elect. But he also said there is a lot of work that needs to be done to combat systemic racism and create more possibility for other people.
Harris, who spoke before Biden, thanked the women who came before her that paved the way for her and praised Biden for choosing a woman as his running mate.
“What a testament it is to Joe’s character, that he had the audacity to break one of the most substantial barriers that exists in our country and select a woman to be his vice president,” Harris.
Harris said while she is the first woman in this office, she won’t be the last.
“Every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities,” Harris said. “Dream with ambition, lead with conviction and see yourselves in a way that others may not, simply because they’ve never seen it before.”