11 pm: A quick update of what has happened so far:

  • Democrat Joe Biden has edged closer to victory in the US presidential elections, but six states – Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina and Pennsylvania – are still too close to call. CNN gave Biden a 253 to 213 lead in Electoral College votes, which are largely based on a state’s population. 
  • US President Donald Trump has said all states recently claimed by Joe Biden would be legally challenged by his team for voter fraud and state election fraud. The president, however, has not provided any proof.
  • Donald Trump also twice made false claims and asked for the ballot counting to be stopped. He tweeted: “STOP THE COUNT!”
  • Joe Biden’s campaign spokesperson Jen O’Malley Dillon has accused US President Donald Trump of “continuing to push a failing strategy” of lawsuits.
  • A Georgia court has dismissed the Trump campaign’s lawsuit over absentee ballots in the state. The campaign has filed lawsuits in Pennsylvania and Michigan and is considering filing one in Nevada as well.

10.48 pm: A Georgia judge dismisses US President Donald Trump campaign’s lawsuit over absentee ballots in the state, reports The Guardian. The campaign argued that election officials were attempting to count invalid ballots in the state but it could not produce any evidence. The campaign has filed lawsuits in Pennsylvania and Michigan as well, according to AP.

10.31 pm: Joe Biden’s campaign spokesperson Jen O’Malley Dillon accuses US President Donald Trump of “continuing to push a failing strategy” of lawsuits, reports BBC. She says the lawsuits are nothing but an attempt to delay Biden being the next president of the United States.

10.30 pm: Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says counting will be over by noon in the state, according to The New York Times. Trump’s lead in the state has shrunk to 18,540 votes.

9.55 pm: US President Donald Trump says all states recently claimed by Joe Biden would be legally challenged by his team for voter fraud and state election fraud. He still hasn’t provided any evidence but claims there is plenty of proof if people “just check out the media”.

9 pm: A quick update of what has happened so far:

  • Democrat Joe Biden has edged closer to victory in the US presidential elections, but six states – Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina and Pennsylvania – are still too close to call. CNN gave Biden a 253 to 213 lead in Electoral College votes, which are largely based on a state’s population. 
  • Donald Trump twice made false claims and asked for the ballot counting to be stopped. He tweeted: “STOP THE COUNT!”
  • Georgia’s Secretary of State will hold a news conference. Currently, there is a 33,000-vote margin between Trump and Biden, and there’s around 90,000 votes remaining to be counted.  
  • The Trump campaign is planning to file a lawsuit in Nevada, claiming that around 10,000 votes were cast by people who no longer live in the state.

8.52 pm: As officials in key battleground states continue to tally legally cast ballots, President Donald Trump is again making false claims on Twitter.

“ANY VOTE THAT CAME IN AFTER ELECTION DAY WILL NOT BE COUNTED,” says Trump. Twitter immediately flagged the post as disputed and possibly misleading.

8.45 pm: According to The Washington Post, in Western Pennsylvania’s Allegheny County, where Biden was leading over Trump, election officials have ended their count but will review an estimated 35,000 absentee ballots before declaring a final tally.

8.38 pm: It has been two days since Election Day. But six states remain too close to call, and both Donald Trump and Joe Biden have pathways to the 270 electoral votes needed to win the race to the White House.

8.28 pm: Even as President Donald Trump demanded that vote counting be halted in his standard all-caps tweet, his top former aide, Kellyanne Conway, urges people to be patient and let every legal vote be counted.

“They spent three years investigating the President, impeaching the President,” Conway tells Fox News. “We can’t wait three hours, three days, three weeks to get a result in our great sturdy democracy as to whom the next President will be? I mean, what is the rush, all of a sudden? Let’s be patient. Let’s take a deep breath. Let’s count every legal vote. I think it’s a time to be methodical and not emotional.”

8.22 pm: The head of an international observer mission to the US elections accuses Donald Trump of a “gross abuse of office”, reports AFP. The president has alleged fraud in the vote counting, without offering evidence.

“The most disturbing thing was that with presidential fanfare of the White House, that is, with all the insignia of power, the American commander-in-chief called for an end to the count because of his purported victory,” says Michael Link, who works for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

8.18 pm: Joe Biden leads over Donald Trump by less than 10,000 votes in Nevada, reports The New York Times.

Meanwhile, Trump campaign is planning to file a lawsuit in Nevada, claiming that around 10,000 votes were cast by people who no longer live in the state, according to Fox News. An announcement for the same will be made during a press conference.

8 pm: Donald Trump is once again demanding election officials to stop counting valid ballots. “STOP THE COUNT!,” the president tweets.

7.22 pm: As of Thursday morning in the United States, Donald Trump had 49.57% of the total votes counted in Georgia, while Joe Biden had 49.2%, reports The New York Times. “We should be done no later than noon time today,” says Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

7.17 pm: Meanwhile, there are close to 50,000 votes still left to be counted in Georgia, reports CNN.

7.15 pm: Trump campaign will make a major announcement in Las Vegas, according to US media.

7.05 pm: Here is a chart showing the changing situation in key states of Arizona and Pennsylvania.

7 pm: Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden says “every vote must be counted” as the Trump campaign has launched legal bids to stop the counting.

6.55 pm: Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey tells CNN that he is confident about Joe Biden winning the state. “We’ve only seen with Philadelphia about maybe 70 or so percent of the vote counted,” he says. “A lot’s going to come in this morning. And when that comes in, that alone, just in Philadelphia, might be enough to have the margin go in Joe Biden’s direction.”

Pennsylvania is among the key states deciding the results of US presidential election.

6.15 pm: Legal experts tells Reuters that US Supreme Court may not have final say in presidential elections. “It’s extremely early on but at the moment it doesn’t seem apparent how this would end up where the US Supreme Court would be decisive,” says Ned Foley, an election law expert at Ohio State University.

They also point out that if Joe Biden wins 270 votes without needing Pennsylvania, the likelihood of a legal fight is diminished.

“I think the court would summarily turn away any effort by the president or his campaign to short-circuit the ordinary legal process,” says Steve Vladeck, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin School of Law.

6.06 pm: Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Wisconsin are among the handful of states up for grabs to determine the final outcome of the election. Joe Biden currently has 243 electoral college votes, and Donald Trump has 213. They need 270 to win the race to the White House.

5.58 pm: In Georgia, officials are saying that they would keep counting all night until all the ballots are tallied. Trump’s lead there is slowly dwindling.

5.52 pm: Dmitri S Peskov, the spokesperson for Russian President Vladimir V Putin, says the developing situation does not allow them to comment about the US presidential elections, reports The New York Times. “We would, of course, prefer to take a pause and wait for some kind of clarity on what is going on,” he tells reporters.

5.40 pm: Former United States Vice President Joe Biden is leading in Pennsylvania, reducing an initial gap of 10 percentage points to 3% points, or about 200,000 votes, according to The New York Times.

5 pm update:

It is now Thursday morning in the US. Election Day was on Tuesday, and results are still awaited from six states. Though Trump has alleged this is due to voter fraud, this is in fact because millions of Americans have voted using mail-in ballots due to the coronavirus outbreak. Mail-in ballots typically take days to be counted.

Here’s an update on where the remaining states are at in terms of counting:

  • Arizona: The state was called for Biden on Wednesday, by both AP and Fox News. But Trump has since made big gains here. Around 86% of votes have been counted, according to CNN. Biden leads 50.5% of the vote to Trump’s 48.1%. Arizona has 11 electoral votes. Results may take up to a few more days, as around half-a-million votes are still to be counted.
  • Georgia: Around 96% of votes have been counted here, and the race is extremely tight. Trump leads 49.6% to Biden’s 49.2% of votes. Results might be out later on Thursday, local time. Georgia has 16 electoral college votes.
  • Nevada: The lead here is slim too, with Biden leading 49.3% over Trump’s 48.7%. So far, around 86% of the vote has been counted. The state has six electoral votes.
  • North Carolina: Trump leads in the state, which has 15 votes in the electoral college. He is up 50.1% against Biden’s 48.7%. Around 95% of the votes have been counted here. 
  • Pennsylvania: A controversial state with a massive number of electoral votes – 20. Around 89% of votes are in, and Trump is up 50.7% against Biden’s 48.1%. Trump has filed a case to throw out postal ballot votes in the state though, which analysts have said were likely to be overwhelmingly for the Democrats. The results are not likely to be out here before Friday local time.
  • Alaska: Only around 56% of the vote in the state has been counted, with Trump leading with 62.9% of votes. Biden is behind with 33% of the votes. The state has three electoral college votes.

4.35 pm: It makes complete sense that the drama of Donald Trump’s first – and possibly only – presidential term would not with a simple decision on the night of November 3. Especially because that day capped an American election season that saw the highest turnout in a century. This included a massive increase in mail-in votes because of the Covid-19 crisis.

Read more: US election takeaways: Biden on the verge of victory, Trump’s tantrum, major pre-poll survey errors

3.45 pm: More than half a million votes remain to be counted in the crucial state of Arizona, which has been called by Fox News and AP for Biden, but where Trump has made leads today, reports CNN. However, Arizona’s secretary of state suggests that the counting could still take “several days”.

2.50 pm: Like in 2016, before this election too, pollsters suggested that the Democratic candidate, Biden was miles ahead of Trump. However, it’s evident now that the race is extremely slim between the two presidential contenders.

The Washington Post also points out that Trump got more votes in this election than in 2016.

“But the inescapable reality of the election results is that Trumpism remains a powerful current in American politics. It’s akin to political tendencies in other parts of the world where strongmen have co-opted democracies. The president’s brand of demagogic nationalism, his ceaseless campaigning through every year of his term and his unrepentant embrace of divisive messaging and tactics have clearly mobilized tremendous support.”

— Ishaan Tharoor, The Washington Post

2.27 pm: These are the latest numbers from the state of Georgia, which has 16 electoral votes. Trump has a slim lead of just over 22,500 votes.

2.23 pm: Biden now has 72 million votes, making him by far the most voted for candidate in US presidential history. Former President Barack Obama picked up 69.5 million votes in his first win in 2008, reports ABC News.

Donald Trump has 68.5 million votes so far.

However, this is no guarantee of a win since Biden needs the electoral college numbers. In the 2016 election, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had 2.8 million votes more than Trump did, but she lost the electoral college 232-306.

2.09 pm: In Arizona, Biden currently holds 50.5% of the popular vote, and Trump 48.1%.

2.07 pm: Joe Biden’s lead in Arizona narrows, reports say. He is around 68,000 votes ahead of Trump now, according to CNN.

1.48 pm: A hearing on Wednesday in a United States election case captured in miniature the challenge for the Trump campaign as it gears up for what could become an all-out legal assault on the US presidential election results in key swing states: it is easy enough to file a lawsuit claiming improprieties – in this case, that Pennsylvania had violated the law by allowing voters whose mail-in ballots were defective to correct them – but a lot harder to provide evidence of wrongdoing or a convincing legal argument.

“I do not understand how the integrity of the election was affected,” said US District Judge Timothy Savage, something he repeated several times during the hearing. (However the judge rules, the case is unlikely to have a significant effect. Only 93 ballots are at issue, a county election official said.)

Read more: Can Donald Trump sue his way to a second term in the White House?

1.30 pm: A quick update:

  • The election still has not been called in seven states, including multiple swing states. Counting continues in Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.
  • CNN’s projections say Biden holds 253 electoral college votes, and Trump 213.
  • Protests are on in parts of North America, some for all votes to be counted, and some against the counting of mail-in ballots. 
  • Trump has filed cases in three states – Pennsylvania and Georgia (both of which have not been called yet), and Michigan – laying the groundwork to contest the election results.

1.22 pm: There are protests at vote-counting centres in Detroit too, AP reports. Trump supporters are chanting “Stop the count!” and demanding counting be stopped, claiming the votes are fraudulent.

There are also agitations in other parts of the US, demanding that all votes be counted. Gatherings are on in New York City, Portland, Seattle and other places, according to AP.

Portland was on the boil following the killing of African American George Floyd by a white former police officer, and was at the centre of hundreds of protests over racial inequality. The National Guard has been kept on standby in Portland, says AP.

People pray for Kamala Harris at Kula Devi temple in Thulasendrapuram, Tiruvarur district, on Tuesday. (Image credit: PTI)

12.20 pm: Counting in Georgia’s Fulton County – the state’s most populous – is still on, with around 14,000 ballots left, CNN reports. The county’s elections director, Richard Barron, tells CNN that he feels responsible for getting the votes counted as quickly as possible.

“Georgia is one of the last few states that hasn’t been called,” Barron tells CNN. “It’s our responsibility to get these things counted tonight if we can, to at least help the process along so that people have peace of mind that all the votes are counted in Georgia.”

11.39 am: Georgia’s DeKalb County has finished counting, and its final tally is approximately 83% for Biden and 16% for Trump, reports CNN.

Georgia has 16 electoral votes, making it an important state for both candidates.

Biden needs 17 electoral votes to take him to the 270-mark required for a win.

11.08 am: These are the states that have not finished counting yet – Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.

Alaska is not expected to finish counting votes perhaps for many days.

11.03 am: Trump supporters have gathered outside election centres in Arizona’s Maricopa County. Local sheriff deputies have been stationed inside the election centre as several protestors are armed, reports The Guardian.

Though multiple news organisations called Arizona for Biden yesterday, Trump has been catching up.

Election officials in Maricopa County are plan to release one more tranche of votes before breaking for the night, CNN reports. Maricopa County is the state’s most populous county.

10.57 am: “After a long night of counting, it’s clear that we’re winning enough states to reach 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency,” Joe Biden said earlier, in his hometown of Wilmington, Delaware. “I’m not here to declare that we won. But I am here to report, when the count is finished, we believe we will be the winners.”

Read more: US polls: ‘It’s clear we’re winning enough states,’ says Joe Biden as Donald Trump trails

10.47 am: More than 90,000 votes still remain to be counted in Georgia, reports CNN.

10.44 am: A month-old video of Democratic leader Bernie Sanders speaking about the election has gone viral since Wednesday for its eerie accuracy. Sanders told comedian Jimmy Fallon last month that Trump will try to “suppress the vote”. He said that most mail-in ballots are likely to be for the Democrats, and that though initial counting might favour the Republicans – since more Republicans prefer to walk into a voting booth and cast their ballot – the results won’t be clear until every vote is counted.

“The election is 3 November and we won’t know the results until days later,” Sanders said. “When do you think we’ll know the results?”

Sanders went on to imitate Trump alleging the mailed ballots were fraudulent.

This is exactly what has happened over the last 24 hours – Joe Biden’s lead has increased following counting of mail-in ballots, while Trump has insisted the mailed ballots are fraudulent and should not be counted.

10.36 am: Protests are being held across the country, both in favour of vote counting continuing after Trump’s threats to stop it, as well as in support of stopping ballot counting.

A crowd in this video is outside Clark County Election headquarters in Nevada, demanding that vote counting be stopped.

10.33 am: Biden has said he will rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement, which the US formally exited on Wednesday.

10.23 am: Meanwhile, two House Democrats tell The Hill they are considering backing a challenger to Speaker Nancy Pelosi after a dismal show in the elections on Tuesday. “Pelosi needed to hammer Trump but instead she chose to let him slide,” one former senior Democratic aide tells The Hill. “Last night should have been a bloodbath for Republicans.”

10.05 am: Kamala Harris is on the threshold of the White House. An Indian American has broken through. In this way and many others, Indians have wrought almost unbelievable annals in the history of migration. But no one could have anticipated this moment, playing out with every eyeball in the world swivelled in her direction.

Read more:

How Indian Americans moved from the fringes to the US political mainstream

10.01 am: There are still about 20,000 mail-in ballots to be counted in Georgia’s Fulton County, Director of Registration and Elections Richard Barron tells CNN.

9.56 am: After Donald Trump derided vote-counting as a “major fraud on our nation” and said his campaign would move the Supreme Court, several Republicans opposed his stance, ABC news reports. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, told reporters that “claiming you’ve won the election is different from finishing the counting.”

9.52 am: Democrat Gary Peters holds on to his Senate seat in Michigan, defeating Republican challenger John James.

9.35 am: In Arizona, dozens of protesters with pro-Trump flags and signs gathered outside a ballot-counting centre, and chanted “let us in!” and “count the votes” and “we love Trump”, as they questioned the integrity of the election system, The Washington Post reports.

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump hold signs as they gather in front of the Arizona State Capitol Building to protest about the early results of the 2020 presidential election, in Phoenix, Arizona, on November 4. [Credit: Edgard Garrido/ Reuters]

9.31 am: As Joe Biden’s path to victory widens, here’s a look at how some of the leading newspapers of United States covered the Election Day:

9.21 am: The margin between President Trump and Biden continues to narrow in Georgia, where counting is still underway, The New York Times reports. The state has not backed a Democrat for president since 1992.

Meanwhile, a Biden campaign adviser tells CNN they “feel good” about Georgia, along with Arizona and Pennsylvania.

9.15 am: A quick recap:

Democrat Joe Biden is six electoral votes short of clinching the White House after flipping Michigan and Wisconsin two battleground states Trump had won in 2016 over Hillary Clinton. The Democrat also won Arizona. States still up for grabs include Nevada (6 electoral votes), Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes) and Georgia (16 electoral votes).

Trump’s campaign, meanwhile, prepared for legal maneuvers and filed lawsuits to stop counting of mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia.

8.44 am: Twitter has labeled half of President Donald Trump’s posts since Wednesday after he repeatedly and falsely declared victory and cast doubt on postal ballot votes counted. At least six of his tweets since Election Day were hidden as Twitter warned “some or all of the content shared is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process”.

7.51 am: Bob Bauer, a lawyer for Democrat Joe Biden’s campaign warned on Wednesday that Trump “will be in for one of the most embarrassing defeats a president ever suffered before the highest court in the land” if he asks it to invalidate ballots counted after Election Day, AFP reports.

7.45 am: What does Trump’s lawsuit in Georgia say?

Trump’s election campaign and the Georgia Republican Party have filed a lawsuit in Georgia seeking to force Chatham County to secure and account for ballots received after 7pm ET (5.30 am IST) on Election Day, Al Jazeera reports. Chatham County contains Savannah and leans Democratic.

Georgia is the third state in which the Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit related to counting ballots in the tight presidential election.

The lawsuit brought claims that Republican challengers had inadequate access to ballots received after 7 pm on November 3. The lawsuit further claims a “significant degree of confusion may still exist regarding whether ballots received after 7:00 pm can be legally counted in Georgia – and they cannot.”

7.43 am: Trump’s lead in Georgia drops below 40,000 votes as ballot counting continues, CNN reports.

7.35 am: It’s 9 pm in the United States and this is where the election results stand. Remember, each candidate needs 270 electoral votes to win presidency:

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden leads the race for the White House with 253 electoral votes. President Trump has 213 electoral votes, according to CNN.

Source: CNN

The New York Times reports that Biden has won 253 electoral votes while Trump is at 213. As per the projections made by Fox News, Biden is at 264, while Trump trails at 213.

6.49 am: Biden urges his supporters to keep faith in the process, after Trump files lawsuits against postal ballot counting in several key states. “I am confident we will emerge victorious,” he says, adding that this would not be his victory alone. “It will be a victory for the American people, our democracy, for America.” Biden has received more than 71 million votes, the most in the history of the United States.

6.44 am: Earlier, Joseph Biden said it was “clear” that he would reach 270 electoral votes and win the presidency, although he did not claim victory immediately.

“I’m not here to declare that we’ve won, but I am here to report that when the count is finished, we believe we will be the winners,” Biden said in a speech at an event center in Wilmington. “I will govern as an American president. There will be no red states and blue states when we win. Just the United States of America.”

6.30 am: Donald Trump’s campaign files lawsuits to stop counting of mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia, laying the groundwork for contesting battleground states as he slips behind Biden in the hunt for the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the White House, AP reports.

The Trump campaign is also seeking to intervene in a Pennsylvania case at the Supreme Court that deals with whether ballots received up to three days after the election can be counted, deputy campaign manager Justin Clark said.

6.29 am: Joe Biden is declared the winner of Michigan and Wisconsin, two key swing states that President Trump won four years ago, AP reports. Biden’s victories in the Great Lakes states take him to 264 electoral votes, meaning he is one battleground state away from crossing the threshold and becoming the president-elect.

Here’s a quick recap of what happened on Wednesday:

  • The race to the White House between Donald Trump and Joe Biden is still too close to call in battleground states. Counting is underway in Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.
  • Biden held narrow leads in Wisconsin, Michigan, Nevada. Meanwhile, Trump has been projected to win Florida, Ohio, Texas and Iowa.
  • Trump’s campaign manager said he was confident that the president will win the elections if all “legally cast” ballots are tabulated, while Biden’s campaign manager also maintained that the former vice president is on track to become the next president of the United States.
  • Earlier in the day, Trump falsely claimed he had won the election, even as millions of votes were uncounted. He also said he would go the US Supreme Court to fight for the win if needed.
  • After this, the Biden campaign criticised Trump’s victory claim as “outrageous, unprecedented, and incorrect” and a “naked effort to take away the democratic rights of American citizens”.