John Henley He explains:
What usually happens?
The US presidential election is not won by the national popular vote. The winner in each state collects the votes of the electors – and needs a total of 270 votes to take over the White House.
The outcome is clear in most elections – if not officially confirmed – by the end of the night. The major American media “invites” each state for a candidate. Although this projection is not based on a final vote count, it is almost always accurate.
This means that the Electoral College votes can be accurately counted and the winner declared. In 2016, it happened at 2.30 am in Washington when Trump reached the requested number 270.
Why didn’t this happen this time?
Mainly due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a large number of voters – around 68% of the total, compared to 34% in 2016 – cast their ballots early, including by mail.
Mail counting is slower because the signatures of voters and witnesses and their addresses must be checked, and ballots settled before they are entered into the counting machines. Some states begin this verification process long before Election Day, which means that the count itself can begin once polling closes. But others do not allow this.
What countries are we talking about?
Five states yet to be named: Nevada, Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Alaska. She invited several news organizations, including the Associated Press and Fox News, Arizona’s Decision Making Office Joe Biden. However, the Trump campaign says this call was made too soon. Next update is not due until 9 PM ET on Thursday.
Alaska will almost certainly end up in the Republican row.
Pennsylvania Officials say they expect most of the votes to be counted by Friday.
The Democratic challenger is narrowly ahead in Nevada, where only late postal ballots of democratic leanings remain. Officials said no further results will be announced at Nevada Until midday ET on Thursday.
In North Carolina, while Trump is clearly the favorite, the state accepts mail-order ballots through November 12 – though that’s expected to make little difference.
What else complicates things?
Almost half of the states will accept postal votes arriving after Election Day as long as they bear a postmark no later than November 3, so postal delays may mean that some ballot papers are not processed until days later: Pennsylvania said results will not be considered fully until the deadline. For Friday.
There was reportedly an increase in the number of temporary ballots made by people who requested to vote by mail but then decided to go to the polling station in person instead. These need to be carefully checked to ensure that no one votes twice.