politics

Trump's press conference cut off halfway through, plus everything else happening in the US election right now.

The sun is now setting on the third day of election fallout in the United States. And still we have no firm result in the presidential contest.

Democratic candidate Joe Biden is currently sitting ahead of incumbent President Donald Trump in the race to the required 270 electoral college votes (see our previous article for a simple explanation of how US elections work). 

At the time of writing, Biden has 264 and Trump has 214.

There are still four states in doubt that, combined, offer 60 electoral college votes.

Here's what you need to know about what's happening right now.

The path to victory for Biden and Trump.

In order to win the presidency, Joe Biden only needs to claim just one of the remaining states: Nevada, Pennsylvania, North Carolina or Georgia.

Donald Trump, meanwhile, would need to win most or all of them to stay in the top job.

So where do those states stand?

According to the latest updates available Friday morning, it looks like this:

NEVADA (winner earns 6 electoral college votes)

TRUMP: 592,813 votes
BIDEN: 604,251
Biden leads by 11,438 votes
76 per cent of votes counted

PENNSYLVANIA (20 electoral college votes)

TRUMP: 3,260,869
BIDEN: 3,185,418
Trump leads by 75,451
89 per cent of votes counted

NORTH CAROLINA (15 electoral college votes)

TRUMP: 2,732,084
BIDEN: 2,655,383
Trump leads by 76,701
94 per cent of votes counted

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GEORGIA (16 electoral college votes)

TRUMP: 2,447,223
BIDEN: 2,445,321
Trump leads by 1902
99 per cent of votes counted

The vast majority of votes currently being counted are mail-in ballots, in which Biden has a clear advantage.

While the Democrats urged their supporters to use this method to avoid crowds amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Republican Donald Trump spouted baseless theories that such votes would be vulnerable to fraud.

Speaking of....

Trump accuses Democrats of trying to "steal" the election.

In a press conference this morning (Australian time), President Donald Trump accused the Democrats of trying to "steal" and "rig" the election.

"If you count the legal votes, I easily win," President Trump said.

"If you count the illegal votes, they can try to steal the election from us."

Watch: Donald Trump addresses the nation. Post continues after video.


Video via BBC. 

The President alleged that his observers have been denied access to the vote count in Pennsylvania and Detroit, Michigan (which was recently called in favour of his opponent Joe Biden).

"People know what is happening, and they have seen what is happening. Incidents reported shortly. A tremendous investigation going on and this is a case where they are trying to steal an election, to rig an election and we cannot let that happen," he said.    

"We think there is going to be a lot of litigation, as we have so much evidence, so much proof, and it is going to end up perhaps at the highest court in the land. We will see. But we think there will be a lot of litigation," he said.   

So far, his claims about voting irregularities have proven entirely baseless, and his litigation attempts fruitless.

Three major TV networks in the US cut off the press conference early, concerned about the misinformation being spouted by the President. 

"Here we are again in the unusual position of not only interrupting the president of the United States but correcting the president of the United States," said MSNBC anchor Brian Williams.

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Two states reject Trump vote fraud suits.

US President Donald Trump's campaign has lost court rulings in the closely contested states of Georgia and Michigan, even as it vowed to bring a new lawsuit challenging what it called 'voting irregularities' in Nevada.

In the Georgia case, the campaign alleged 53 late-arriving ballots were mixed with on-time ballots. In Michigan, it had sought to stop votes from being counted and obtain greater access to the tabulation process.

State judges tossed out both the suits on Thursday.

Judge James Bass, a superior court judge in Georgia, said there was "no evidence" that the ballots in question were invalid.

In the Michigan case, Judge Cynthia Stephens said: "I have no basis to find that there is a substantial likelihood of success on the merits."

Bob Bauer, a senior adviser to Biden's campaign, called the various Trump lawsuits a "meritless" distraction and said the strategy was designed to undermine the integrity of the electoral process.

"This is part of a broader misinformation campaign that involves some political theatre," he said.

"They're intended to give the Trump campaign the opportunity to argue the vote count should stop. It is not going to stop," he told reporters on Thursday.

Election legal experts have said Trump's legal strategy is unlikely to have a decisive impact on the outcome of the election.

Trump, Biden supporters protest across US.

A second day of sometimes duelling demonstrations over the integrity of the US presidential election continue in Philadelphia and other cities.

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Supporters of Joe Biden have rallied around the slogan to "Count every vote," believing a complete tally would show the Democratic former vice president had beaten Republican President Donald Trump. 

Biden supporters take to the streets in Pennsylvania. Image: Getty. 

Some ardent Trump backers have countered with cries to "Protect the vote" in support of his campaign's efforts to have some categories of ballots, including some votes submitted by mail, discarded.

Both factions appeared outside a vote-counting centre in Philadelphia on Thursday morning, where election staff steadily worked through a mountain of still-uncounted mail-in ballots that will determine whether Biden or Trump will take Pennsylvania's crucial 20 Electoral College votes.

In Washington, a procession of cars and bicycles, sponsored by activists from a group called Shutdown DC, paraded slowly through the streets of the capital to protest "an attack on the democratic process" by Trump and his "enablers," according to its website.

Most demonstrations in cities around the country have been peaceful and small — sometimes amounting only to a few dozen people with signs standing in a city centre — as Biden's path to victory looks a bit more assured than Trump's, even though either outcome remains possible.


More to come throughout the day...


- With AAP

Feature image: Getty

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