US election 2020: Biden wins Georgia recount as Trump setbacks mount

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US President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia has been confirmed by a recount, as legal efforts by Donald Trump’s allies to challenge his defeat were dismissed in three states.

The Democrat beat his Republican rival in Georgia by 12,284 votes, consistent with the audit required by state law.

Mr. Biden said he was confident Mr. Trump knew he wasn’t getting to win and had shown “incredible irresponsibility”.

The Democrat is about to require an office in January because of the 46th US president.

Mr. Biden’s victory margin within the public vote overall stands at quite 5.9 million. His victory within the US body system, which determines who becomes president, is projected to be 306 to 232.

What happened in Georgia?
On Thursday, Georgia’s Secretary of State, Brad Raffensperger, said the hand audit of ballots had not altered Mr. Biden’s victory within the state.

“Georgia’s historic first statewide audit reaffirmed that the state’s new secure paper ballot electoral system accurately counted and reported results,” Mr. Raffensberger, a Republican, said during a statement.

“This may be a credit to the diligence of our county and native elections officials who rushed to undertake and complete such a momentous task during a short period of your time .”

The recount found the error rate was no greater than 0.73% in any county and Mr. Biden’s margin of victory over Mr. Trump remained at under 0.5%. The results are going to be certified on Friday.

Trump campaign senior legal adviser Jenna Ellis said the audit had gone “exactly as we expected” because, she said without evidence, the state had recounted illegal ballots.

But Gabriel Sterling, a Republican who is Georgia’s electoral system implementation manager, told CNN on Thursday: “One of the large complaints is these machines somehow flipped votes or changed votes or did stuff. They didn’t, a minimum of not in Georgia. We proved it.”

During the audit in the week, nearly 6,000 untallied votes were found – paring back Mr. Biden’s lead slightly – but they were the results of human error and not fraud, Mr. Sterling has said.

Officials in Floyd County have fired their election manager over the matter, local media reported on Thursday.

What did Mr. Biden say?
He was speaking after a virtual meeting with governors, including Democrats and Republicans, about the coronavirus crisis.

Asked about Mr. Trump’s lack of concession, Mr. Biden said the president was sending “incredibly damaging messages… to the remainder of the planet about how democracy functions” which he would be remembered, “as being one among the foremost irresponsible presidents in American history”.

“It’s hard to fathom how this man thinks,” he continued, adding: “It’s just outrageous what he’s doing.”

Of the election result, the Democratic president-elect – who is thanks to starting in January – said: “The overwhelming majority of individuals believe it’s legitimate.”

Republican Senator Mitt Romney later echoed Mr. Biden during a tweet.

“Having did not make even a plausible case of widespread fraud or conspiracy before any court of law, the President has now resorted to overt pressure on state and native officials to subvert the desire of the people and overturn the election,” he wrote.

“It is difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action by a sitting American President.”

What of the legal challenges?
In a matter of hours on Thursday, Mr. Trump’s allies were dealt with legal setbacks in Georgia, Arizona, and Pennsylvania.

Republicans lost their final lawsuit in Georgia as a court rejected their effort to dam the results’ certification, which is thanks to happening on Friday. The judge who dismissed the case was appointed by Mr. Trump last year.

In Arizona, a judge rejected a lawsuit filed last week by the state Republican Party seeking a replacement audit of ballots in Maricopa County, home to Phoenix – the capital and largest city.

In Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign lost its bid in state court to throw out quite 2,000 postal ballots.

At a Thursday briefing, Mr. Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani continued to get out unsubstantiated conspiracy theories and accusations of electoral fraud.

He railed against the reporting of his team’s legal challenges, saying the media had shown an “irrational pathological hatred for the president”.

Mr. Giuliani also said the campaign was withdrawing its last remaining lawsuit in Michigan. He said it had achieved its aim of stopping the certification of the end in one key county.

However, the vice-chairman of Wayne County’s canvassing board said an effort by its two Republican members to rescind their earlier certification of the result was invalid, and therefore the certification was binding.

Source: bbc news

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