Joe Biden elected US President; Kamala Harris becomes vice-president

Lalit K Jha
·5-min read

Washington, Nov 7 (PTI) Joe Biden, who triumphed over incumbent US President Donald Trump in a divisive, bitter and closely-fought presidential election, appealed to fellow Americans on Saturday that it is time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind and come together as a nation.

The 77-year-old Democrat, who became the oldest man ever to be elected to the White House, will be the 46th president of the United States, after securing a major victory in Pennsylvania, the state where he was born put him over the 270 electoral votes needed to win.

Biden will win Nevada, picking up another state after winning the presidency. There are six electoral votes at stake in Nevada. This brings Biden's current electoral vote total to 279, CNN reported.

'I am honoured and humbled by the trust the American people have placed in me and in Vice President-elect Harris,” Biden said in his first statement after America's major news outlets declared him the winner of the November 3 elections, thus making him the President-elect.

“In the face of unprecedented obstacles, a record number of Americans voted. Proving once again, that democracy beats deep in the heart of America,” he said.

'With the campaign over, it's time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation. It’s time for America to unite. And to heal,” Biden said.

'We are the United States of America. And there’s nothing we can’t do, if we do it together,” said the President-elect.

Before becoming the Democratic presidential nominee, Biden served as vice president under former President Barack Obama. He is also Delaware's longest-serving senator.

Senator Kamala Harris, 56, who is of Indian origin, has become the first ever woman vice president-elect of the United States. She would also be the country’s first Indian-origin, first Black and first African American vice president of the country.

Biden and Harris would be sworn in as the President and Vice President of the country on January 20.

“America, I’m honoured that you have chosen me to lead our great country. The work ahead of us will be hard, but I promise you this: I will be a President for all Americans - whether you voted for me or not. I will keep the faith that you have placed in me,” Biden said in a tweet after the US media projected him as the winnner of the November 3 election.

'This election is about so much more than” Joe Biden “or me. It’s about the soul of America and our willingness to fight for it. We have a lot of work ahead of us. Let’s get started,” tweeted Vice President-elect Harris.

Biden ran twice unsuccessfully for president - in 1988 and 2008.

Trump, a Republican, was playing golf in Virginia when major media outlets called the race. He is now the first incumbent president to lose reelection bid after George H W Bush in 1992.

Trump, 74, was in no mood to concede the race and declared himself as the winner of the November 3 presidential election.

'I WON THIS ELECTION, BY A LOT!' tweeted Trump. His campaign has vowed not to give up and has launched several law suits in some battleground states.

Counting of ballots is still ongoing in Pennsylvania, Arizona, Nevada and Georgia. Biden has the lead in all the four states, which according to major media outlets is unlikely to be reversed.

'Former vice president Joe Biden is projected to win Pennsylvania and its 20 electoral votes, according to Edison Research, putting him over the 270 needed to win the presidency,” The Washington Post reported.

The call came about 11:30 a.m. Saturday (local time), after a report of more counted votes from Pennsylvania.

'Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. was elected the 46th president of the United States on Saturday, promising to restore political normalcy and a spirit of national unity to confront raging health and economic crises, and making Donald J. Trump a one-term president after four years of tumult in the White House,” The New York Times said.

Biden’s victory amounted to a repudiation of Trump by millions of voters exhausted with his divisive conduct and chaotic administration, and was delivered by an unlikely alliance of women, people of colour, old and young voters and a sliver of disaffected Republicans.

Former US presidents Obama and Bill Clinton on Saturday congratulated Biden and Harris on their historic electoral victory.

“I could not be prouder to congratulate our next President, Joe Biden, and our next First Lady, Jill Biden. I also couldn’t be prouder to congratulate Kamala Harris and Doug Emhoff for Kamala’s groundbreaking election as our next Vice President,” Obama said in a statement.

“We’re fortunate that Joe’s got what it takes to be President and already carries himself that way. Because when he walks into the White House in January, he’ll face a series of extraordinary challenges no incoming President ever has – a raging pandemic, an unequal economy and justice system, a democracy at risk, and a climate in peril,” Obama said.

America has spoken, and democracy has won. Now we have a President-Elect and Vice President-Elect who will serve all of us and bring us all together. Congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on your momentous victory!” Bill Clinton said in a tweet. PTI LKJ ZH AKJ MRJ MRJ