12 July 2024

ILMINGTON, Del./WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump falsely claimed victory over Democratic rival Joe Biden on Wednesday with millions of votes still uncounted in a White House race that will not be decided until a handful of states complete vote-counting over the next hours or days.

 

Shortly after Biden said he was confident of winning the contest once the votes are counted, Trump appeared at the White House to declare victory and said his lawyers would be taking his case to the U.S. Supreme Court, without specifying what they would claim.

“We were getting ready to win this election. Frankly, we did win this election,” Trump said. “This is a major fraud on our nation. We want the law to be used in a proper manner. So we’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop.”

Polls have closed and voting has stopped across the country, but election laws in U.S. states require all votes to be counted, and many states routinely take days to finish counting legal ballots. More votes stood to be counted this year than in the past as people voted early by mail and in person because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Earlier in the evening, Trump won the battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio and Texas, dashing Biden’s hopes for a decisive early victory, but Biden said he was confident he was on track to winning the White House by taking three key Rust Belt states.

Biden, 77, was eyeing the so-called “blue wall” states of Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania that sent Trump, 74, to the White House in 2016 for victories once those states finish counting votes in hours or days to come. Trump was ahead in all three states in partial counts, with Democratic mail-in ballots still to be tallied.

“We feel good about where we are,” Biden said in his home state of Delaware, shouting over a din of supporters in cars honking their horns in approval. “We believe we’re on track to win this election.”

Winning those three states would be enough to give Biden an Electoral College victory. Fox News projected Biden would win Arizona, another state that voted for Trump in 2016, giving him more options to get to 270 Electoral College votes.

Biden leads 220 to 213 over Trump in the fight for 270 Electoral College votes, according to Edison Research.