Election workers count absentee ballots into the early morning, Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 in Milwaukee at a central counting facility. (AP Photo/Stephen Groves)

Election workers count absentee ballots into the early morning, Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 in Milwaukee at a central counting facility. (AP Photo/Stephen Groves)

VIDEO: There’s no winner in the U.S. presidential race. That’s OK

The delay doesn’t signify a positive for one side or the other

America woke up Wednesday morning without a winner of the presidential election. That’s OK.

Critical battleground states including Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania remained without declared winners, leaving both President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden short of the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the White House.

This isn’t necessarily a surprise. In a year turned upside down by the coronavirus pandemic, many states made it easier to vote by mail, and millions chose to do so rather than venturing out to cast ballots in person. That meant a slowdown in the tabulation of results because votes received by mail often take longer to process than ballots cast at polling places.

And the closer the margin in a state is, the more votes are needed for The Associated Press to declare a winner.

There are also roughly 20 states that allow ballots received after Election Day to be counted if they were postmarked by the day of the election. That includes Pennsylvania, one of the key outstanding states.

Some states, including Florida, began counting absentee ballots days before Election Day — and had definitive results within hours of the polls closing. The AP declared Trump the winner in Florida.

The abundance of absentee ballots also has thrown into doubt historical norms, making the arc of the race harder to determine — though one political narrative that held for sure is that the country remains evenly divided between both parties.

None of that means there is anything wrong with the results, or any reason to doubt the vote-counting process. It just means the country doesn’t know who won the presidential election for the time being.

And we don’t yet know when we’ll know.

The delay doesn’t signify a positive for one side or the other — even though it has provoked radically different reactions from each.

Biden took an outdoor stage in Delaware shortly before 1 a.m. Wednesday and said the country needed more time to determine its next president, declaring, “Your patience is commendable.”

“We knew because of the unprecedented early vote, the mail-in vote, that it was going to take awhile,” Biden said. “We’re going to have to be patient until the hard work of tallying the votes is finished, and it ain’t over until every vote is counted.”

READ MORE: Trump prematurely claims victory as world waits nervously, impatiently for U.S. vote count

Trump spent months railing against expanding mail-in voting and suggesting without evidence that it could lead to widespread fraud, while imploring with equal fervour that the election should have a result on the same night the polls closed. In the early morning hours of Wednesday, he told a crowd of cheering supporters at the White House that he would challenge the election results before the Supreme Court, though it was unclear exactly what type of legal challenge he was proposing.

That prompted a statement from Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillion, who said: “If the president makes good on his threat to go to court to try to prevent the proper tabulation of votes, we have legal teams standing by ready to deploy to resist that effort. And they will prevail.”

Vote tabulations routinely continue beyond Election Day, and states largely set the rules for when the count has to end.

The U.S. has endured a presidential race without an immediate winner before. In 2000, a Supreme Court ruling on Dec. 12 — more than a month after Election Day — ended the Florida recount and awarded the presidency to Republican George W. Bush over Democrat Al Gore.

This time, media outlets including The Associated Press and others frequently warned a delayed verdict could occur — suggesting that an election where campaigning was so disrupted wouldn’t escape seeing its conclusion get scrambled as well.

EXPLAINING RACE CALLS: U.S. presidential race too early to call

___

Will Weissert, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Donald TrumpJoe BidenUSA

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A case of COVID-19 has been confirmed by Interior Health at Rutland Senior Secondary Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Case of COVID-19 confirmed at Rutland Senior Secondary

Interior Health lists possible exposure dates as Nov. 23-25, 27

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
First Nations Leadership Council demands justice for victims of Kelowna social worker

Union of BC Indian Chiefs calls actions of Robert Saunders nothing short of ‘complete depravity’

(City of West Kelowna)
Large West Kelowna housing development back on the table

Council considering rezoning to accommodate 184 housing units, project hopes for ~933 by completion

Kelowna videographer Noah van der Eerden details why he thinks Kelowna is the best city in his video. (Noah van der Eerden - YouTube)
Videographer shows off Kelowna’s beautiful sights in heartfelt video

Noah van der Eerden moved to Kelowna from Vancouver two years ago

Children wait using physical distancing after getting their pictures taken at picture day at St. Barnabas Catholic School during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scarborough, Ont., on Tuesday, October 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Update: COVID-19 cases confirmed at more Kelowna schools

Interior Health announced a case has been confirmed at Chute Lake Elementary

A snow moon rises over Mt. Cheam in Chilliwack on Feb. 8, 2020. Friday, Dec. 11, 2020 is Mountain Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Dec. 6 to 12

Mountain Day, Dewey Decimal System Day and Lard Day are all coming up this week

Courtesy of the World Health Organization
UBCO researchers interview caregivers for rural adults’ mental health concern

The researchers are looking for participants who live or have relatives in rural communities

A laboratory technician holds a dose of a COVID-19 novel coronavirus vaccine candidate that's ready for trial on monkeys at the National Primate Research Center of Thailand. (Mladen Antonov | AFP)
WEB POLL: Will you take a vaccine for COVID-19?

Doses are expected to arrive in the new year

Travis Hirlaka, Vernon
PHOTOS: Sunrise paints Okanagan skies

Residents in the Okanagan captured stunning shots of a colourful start to Saturday

Staff and students at Vernon’s Fulton Secondary School were evacuated due to an electrical short that sent one person to hospital Friday, Dec. 4, 2020. (Kerry Hutter photo)
Vernon high school evacuated, one person injured by electrical short

Incident at Clarence Fulton Secondary forced brief evacuation Friday afternoon

Two Canadian petitions are asking to have elected officials removed from office. (Pixabay.com)
COLUMN: Petitions show loss of faith in democratic process

Online petitions from third-party sources have taken aim at elected officials in Canada

Chinook salmon spawning in the Fraser River near Tete Jeune Cache. ((Shane Kalyn photo, property of the Upper Fraser Fisheries Conservation Alliance)
North-Okanagan Shuswap MP petitions government to reform salmon management

Mel Arnold tables petition to allow more angler access to non-threatened Fraser River chinook salmon

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Shuswap Cider Company has applied for a licence that would accommodate a cider manufacturing facility, a tasting room and patio/lounge area at Westgate Market in Salmon Arm. (File photo)
Cider manufacturing facilty, tasting room and patio proposed for Salmon Arm

Council asked to raise a virtual glass to a licence for a cidery and amenities in Westgate Mall

Most Read