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Biden projected to win Wisconsin and Michigan

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Follow Thursday's election updates here

CBS News projects Joe Biden is the winner in Wisconsin and Michigan, capturing 26 electoral votes and inching closer to the 270 he needs to capture the White House and deny President Trump a second term.

Biden's victory in two states that were key parts of Mr. Trump's coalition in 2016 significantly limits the president's pathways to reelection, with just four states still considered toss-ups in CBS News' estimates. Biden currently holds a lead of 20,510 votes in Wisconsin with nearly all votes counted, and a lead of roughly 61,000 votes in Michigan.

Even before news organizations began projecting Biden to win Wisconsin Wednesday afternoon, Bill Stepien, the president's campaign manager, said the campaign would "immediately" seek a recount, which is permitted in Wisconsin when the margin of victory is less than 1 percentage point. Biden's lead in the state stands at about 0.6 percentage points.

Stepien said the campaign also moved to file suit in Michigan court to stop officials from counting ballots there, saying campaign observers have been denied adequate access to vote-tallying locations. The campaign followed that announcement with three more legal actions in Pennsylvania, where Biden has cut into the president's lead as votes were counted over the course of the day.

The president has falsely claimed victory in the election, portraying the orderly counting of millions of legally cast votes as an illegitimate effort to steal the election and vowing to challenge the continued counting all the way to the Supreme Court. Elections officials across the country said Wednesday that the vote-counting process has gone smoothly, with few if any irregularities.

CBS News still considers North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Georgia toss-ups, while Biden is likely to win in Arizona and Nevada. Biden is currently projected to win states that control 253 electoral votes, just 17 votes shy of the 270 needed to win the White House. A projected win in Arizona and Nevada would give him precisely 270 votes. The president's total stands at 213.

Find results for all races in the CBS News Election Center, and updates from key states here:

 

Trump's lead shrinks in Georgia

President Trump has seen his lead shrink in Georgia to just 28,827 votes, with 95% of the vote now in. At 12:30 a.m. on Thursday, Mr. Trump had 2,427,542 votes to Joe Biden's 2,398,715 votes. They're separated by a razor-thin margin of 0.6%.

Earlier on Wednesday night as counting continues in numerous counties throughout the state, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said that as of 10:15 p.m., there were approximately 90,735 ballots still outstanding.

Heavily Democratic Fulton County, which has currently reported 94% of its vote, said it expected to finish its counting at some point after midnight. Georgia has so far reported 95% of its vote.

By LaCrai Mitchell
 

Trump's lead narrows in Pennsylvania

President Trump's lead has narrowed to 182,561 in Pennsylvania with 1,066,963 mail ballots still uncounted. About 88% of the vote is in, and Mr. Trump currently leads Biden 50.8% to 47.9%. It's a significant drop from late Wednesday afternoon, when Mr. Trump held a much stronger lead of 379,639 votes over Biden. 

The ballots that are outstanding seem likely to favor Biden. They were cast by mail, and of the 3.1 million mail ballots requests in Pennsylvania, 63% were from Democrats, 25% from Republicans and 12% other. It remains to be seen if there's enough support for Biden among the million or so ballots left to surpass Mr. Trump.

By Zak Hudak
 

Trump campaign sues over ballot counting in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia

Lawyers for the Trump campaign are taking legal action in an effort to prevent former Vice President Joe Biden from reaching the 270 electoral votes needed to win the election. The lawsuits, filed Wednesday, contest ballot counting in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia.

The campaign is demanding access to vote-counting sites in Michigan and Pennsylvania so they can count each ballot, but there are already poll watchers representing both parties in place doing just that.

CBS News projects that Biden has won Michigan, a state which supported Mr. Trump in 2016. Pennsylvania and Georgia, however, still remain too close to call.

Read more here or watch the full story in the player below: 

Trump claims 2020 election is being stolen 01:19
 

With few exceptions, North Carolina results won't be updated until next week

In a nearly hour-long press conference this afternoon, North Carolina State Board of Elections Director Karen Brinson Bell told reporters that, with very few exceptions, North Carolina's election result tallies will not change before November 12 or 13. These are the dates that most county boards of elections have selected to hold meetings, where absentee by mail ballots will be reviewed before being tabulated.

Additionally, there are approximately 117,000 absentee mail ballots that were requested by voters, from whom the state board has not received a ballot for just yet. Voters had until Tuesday at 5 p.m. to get their absentee mail ballots postmarked in order to still be counted. Bell said her team will be looking out for those 117,000 absentee ballot requests in the next 8 days and will need to check these ballots to make sure they're appropriately postmarked. They will also be matching these ballots up with voter history information.

Information is still being collected on the number of provisional ballots cast and the state board has sent the county boards surveys for them to complete so that the NCSBE can get a better sense on where the provisional ballots are in the state. Bell said her office will have a report on the provisional ballots by noon Thursday at the latest. Counties will meet to consider provisional ballots on November 13.

Bell said that when the state uploaded its last set of unofficial election night results at 12:28am, nearly 5.5 million ballots had been cast — 977,000 absentee by mail ballots, 3.6 million ballots cast during one-stop early voting, and approximately 900,000 ballots cast on Election Day.  

By LaCrai Mitchell
 

Trump campaign files lawsuit in attempt to halt vote in Georgia

The Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit in a third state, Georgia, in an attempt to halt vote counting. The president's campaign has also filed lawsuits to halt ballot counting in Pennsylvania and Michigan. 

CBS News projected Joe Biden won Michigan earlier Wednesday, taking the "blue wall" state back for Democrats after it voted for Mr. Trump in 2016. Pennsylvania and Georgia are left standing as toss-ups, according to CBS News presidential results, joined only by North Carolina. 

Like its previous lawsuits, the Trump campaign has claimed that absentee ballots received after Election Day should not be counted. In August, however, a federal judge ruled that Georgia mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day can be accepted up to three days after polls close.  

"President Trump and the Georgia Republican Party have filed suit to require all Georgia counties to separate any and all late-arriving ballots from all legally cast ballots to ensure a free, fair election in which only legal, valid ballots count," said Justin Clark, Mr. Trump's deputy campaign manager and senior counsel, in a statement.

Georgia secretary of state Brad Raffensperger said that as of 4 p.m. ET Wednesday, there were roughly 200,000 votes left to be counted, and counting could take place into Thursday morning.

"We're on pace to accomplish that responsibly, ensuring that the vote of every eligible voter is heard," he said in a statement. "It's important to act quickly, but it's more important to get it right."

By Audrey McNamara
 

Pelosi says the people have spoken

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in a Dear Colleague letter Wednesday, said it's clear the people have spoken and she declared Joe Biden as the next president. CBS News has not yet projected a winner in the race and neither Biden nor President Trump have reached 270 electoral college votes. 

"The American people have made their choice clear and are sending Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to the White House," the letter said. 

But House Democrats are sure to be doing some soul-searching, after losing seats in the House. It's also seeming more likely that Republicans will hold the Senate, halting any Democratic legislative agenda. 

"Our Democratic House Majority, working in partnership with the Democratic White House, will now have the opportunity to deliver extraordinary progress.  Together, we will continue to deliver on our successful For The People agenda: lower health care costs, bigger paychecks by building green infrastructure and cleaner government," Pelosi wrote.

Thousands of votes are still being counted and neither candidate has yet won the race. 

By Kathryn Watson
 

Georgia secretary of state says 200,000 ballots still need to be counted

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said that as of 4 p.m. ET Wednesday, there were roughly 200,000 votes left to be counted. CBS News has estimated Georgia is a toss-up. 

Raffensperger said the state expected vote counting would take place into Wednesday night and even Thursday morning.

"We're on pace to accomplish that responsibly, ensuring that the vote of every eligible voter is heard," he said in a statement. "It's important to act quickly, but it's more important to get it right."

In addition to Georgia, North Carolina and Pennsylvania remain toss-ups, with elections officials continuing to count ballots in each of those states, too.

By Melissa Quinn
 

Pence, Kushner and Meadows met at Trump campaign headquarters to discuss path forward

Vice President Mike Pence, Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows met at the Trump campaign's headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, on Wednesday to discuss the campaign's path forward, according to two senior campaign officials. 

By Nicole Sganga
 

U.S. cyber chief: "No evidence" foreign adversary blocked voting or changed tallies

Chris Krebs, the director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), said that after the final day of voting and with millions of votes cast, the federal government has "no evidence any foreign adversary was capable of preventing Americans from voting or changing vote tallies."

"We will remain vigilant for any attempts by foreign actors to target or disrupt the ongoing vote counting and final certification of results," Krebs said in a statement. "The American people are the last line of defense against foreign influence efforts and we encourage continued patience in the coming days and weeks."

With states still counting ballots, Krebs said CISA will continue supporting states and localities as they near certification deadlines and the official outcome of the general election. 

By Melissa Quinn
 

CBS News projects Biden wins Michigan

CBS News projects that Biden has won Michigan, another state which supported Mr. Trump in 2016 but flipped back to blue this year. With Michigan's 16 electoral votes, Biden now has earned 253 electoral votes, bringing him ever closer to the 270 needed to win. 

If Biden wins Nevada and Arizona, both of which are trending likely Democratic, he will secure exactly 270 Electoral College votes.

Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien said earlier Wednesday that the president's reelection campaign has filed a lawsuit in Michigan state court to stop the counting of ballots, citing inadequate access to vote-tallying locations.

Several states have hundreds of thousands of uncounted ballots, including Pennsylvania, another Rust Belt state which Mr. Trump carried in 2016. North Carolina and Georgia also remain too close to call.

By Grace Segers
 

Biden predicts "we will be the winner" of the election

Biden says he's confident he'll emerge victor... 06:28

Biden projected confidence in brief remarks to reporters in Wilmington, Delaware, on Wednesday afternoon, and urged Americans to unify despite the country's divided politics.

"I'm not here to declare that I've won," Biden said, contrasting himself with Mr. Trump, who falsely claimed victory early on Wednesday morning. "But I am here to report that when the count is finished, I believe that we will be the winner."

Biden added that he felt "good" about his chances in Pennsylvania, and was "confident we'll emerge victorious."

Biden also repeated a line that he began to use towards the end of the campaign, saying that he would be a president for all Americans.

"There will be no blue states and red states when we win, just the United States of America," Biden said. He also urged Americans to "lower the temperature, to see each other again, to listen to one another, to hear each other again."

Biden implicitly rebuked the president, who has cast doubt on the legitimacy of counting legal ballots.

"Now, every vote must be counted. No one is going to take our democracy away from us," Biden said.

By Grace Segers
 

International observers see no evidence of "systemic wrongdoing" in U.S. elections

International election observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), a security-oriented intergovernmental organization of 57 countries of which the U.S. is a member, said in a press conference Wednesday that "allegations of systemic wrongdoing" in the U.S. elections "have no solid ground," but warned that "legal uncertainty and unprecedented attempts to undermine public trust" threatened to tarnish the outcome.

The OSCE sends election observers to countries around the world to "assess the extent to which elections respect fundamental freedoms and are characterized by equality, universality, political pluralism, confidence, transparency and accountability." At the invitation of the State Department, it has observed 9 US elections since 2002. 

"Counting and tabulation are ongoing and should continue in accordance with the law and OSCE commitments. Nobody, no politician, no elected official, nobody should limit the people's right to vote," Michael Georg Link, special coordinator and leader of the short-term OSCE observer mission, told journalists.

"Making sure that every vote is counted is a fundamental obligation of all branches of government. Baseless allegations of systematic deficiencies, notably by the incumbent President, including on election night, harm public trust in democratic institutions," he said.

By Haley Ott
 

Trump campaign says it's suing to halt vote count in Pennsylvania

Continuing a salvo of legal challenges meant to thwart Biden's chances, the Trump campaign announced it is taking action on three different fronts in Pennsylvania. 

The campaign says it's suing to halt the counting of votes over concerns about "transparency," moving to intervene in existing Supreme Court litigation over Pennsylvania's three-day extension for mail-in ballots and filing suit to challenge an extension of the deadline for mail-in and absentee voters to provide proof identification.

"We are suing to stop Democrat election officials from hiding the ballot counting and processing from our Republican poll observers — observers whose only job is to make sure every valid ballot is counted, and counted once," deputy campaign manager Justin Clark said in a statement. "The eyes of the country are on Pennsylvania, but Pennsylvania has kept eyes off of the absentee ballot counting process all along, and that must stop today." 

Clark claimed Democratic elections officials in Philadelphia and elsewhere in the state have "forced our observers to stay 25 feet or more from the counting process, leaving no meaningful way whatsoever for our observers to do their jobs." Clark said the suit, in an unspecified court, is meant "to temporarily halt counting until there is meaningful transparency and Republicans can ensure all counting is done above board and by the law."

Trump campaign officials said moments later on a call with reporters that they believe they have won in Pennsylvania, even though no news outlet has called the race and hundreds of thousands of ballots have yet to be counted. Mr. Trump currently leads by 379,639 votes and remains a toss-up in CBS News' projections.

The moves in Pennsylvania are the third action the president's campaign has taken on Wednesday to contest the vote count in key battleground states. Earlier, Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien said the campaign will seek a recount in Wisconsin and file suit in Michigan to stop the counting of votes.

By Kathryn Watson
 

Iran's supreme leader ridicules Trump over election comments

As sanctions bite, Iran watches U.S. election... 02:43

Iran gave its first official reaction to the U.S. election on Wednesday, with the very top of the Islamic Republic's cleric-led government, the supreme leader himself, aiming ridicule squarely at Mr. Trump on the president's platform of choice.

"What a spectacle!" tweeted Ali Khamenei. "One says this is the most fraudulent election in US history. Who says that? The president who is currently in office. His rival says Trump intends to rig the election!"

In Tehran, the Trump administration's policy of harsh sanctions is really hurting. A good example: On Election Day in the U.S., CBS News visited a lab managing the testing program for Iran's serious COVID-19 outbreak. They can't make nearly enough, because sanctions have choked off Iran's access to foreign equipment and chemicals.

Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said that some in the government preferred a Biden win, as it might lead to an easing of sanctions as part of new nuclear negotiations.

Iran's foreign minister on U.S. election 04:42

But the hardliners in the government torpedoed that idea. Khamenei, who has the final say on all matters as supreme leader, has made it clear that he believes the U.S. is not to be trusted.

Meanwhile, many exhausted Iranians have pretty much given up hope of life improving anytime soon, no matter who's in the White House.

—Elizabeth Palmer and Tucker Reals

 

Biden projected to win Wisconsin

With a lead of just over 20,000 votes and nearly all ballots counted, CBS News projects that Biden is the presumptive winner in Wisconsin, pending any possible recounts. The Trump campaign has already announced that it will "immediately" ask for a recount in the state, which a candidate is entitled to do when the margin of victory is less than 1 percentage point.

Biden's victory in Wisconsin brings him closer to clinching 270 electoral votes. Michigan and Pennsylvania, two other Rust Belt states which could be critical for Biden, have yet to be called and remain toss-ups.

By Grace Segers
 

Judge could call postmaster general to testify over missed ballot sweep deadline

A federal judge indicated he may call Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to testify about why the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) missed an Election-Day deadline to sweep locations in several states for left behind mail-in ballots.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan, who issued the original order, expressed disappointment with USPS at a hearing on Wednesday. Sullivan pressed government lawyers about the administration's actions — or lack thereof — in complying with his order yesterday. 

"Now you can tell your clients this in no uncertain terms... I am not pleased about this 11th hour development last night," Sullivan said to government counsel. "You can tell your clients that someone may have a price to pay for that."

The sweeps were ordered to begin at 12 p.m. ET and be completed by 3 p.m. ET. Attorneys for the Justice Department, which is representing the Postal Service, said a processing was previously scheduled to take place on Election Day from 4 to 8 p.m., before most polls closed.

USPS also claimed that it needed more manpower to conduct such a thorough inspection, saying it was "unable to accelerate" the review process "without significantly disrupting pre existing activities" on Election Day

Sullivan contested the claim on Wednesday, telling the lawyers that the government should have said on Tuesday if it could not comply. 

"Yesterday, it was the government's job to tell me that I could make appropriate adjustments to the order," Sullivan said. "Now it sounds like you didn't know the timing of when they would be there."

Justice Department attorney Joseph Borson apologized for not setting realistic expectations.

"What the issue was, is that when the order came in, the postal inspectors were not physically in the sites," Borson said. "And there wasn't enough time given their other law enforcement duties and other election duties to get them on site by 3 p.m."

Sullivan's order came after USPS revealed that more than 300,000 ballots were received but unable to be traced to their destination, according to data analyzed by the NAACP. The sweeps were ordered in six key battleground states, including Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia, which have yet to be called for either candidate. 

The court is scheduled to hear testimony from Kevin Bray, who currently serves as the executive lead for mail processing in the 2020 elections. Bray is expected to answer questions about the sweep, as well as the supposed 300,000 ballots that may still be in the system.

By Audrey McNamara
 

Trump campaign sues to halt counting of votes in Michigan

Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien said the president's reelection campaign has filed a lawsuit in Michigan state court today to stop the counting of ballots, citing inadequate access to vote-tallying locations. 

"As votes in Michigan continue to be counted, the presidential race in the state remains extremely tight as we always knew it would be," Stepien said in a statement. "President Trump's campaign has not been provided with meaningful access to numerous counting locations to observe the opening of ballots and the counting process, as guaranteed by Michigan law."

Stepien said the lawsuit was filed in the Michigan Court of Claims.

In addition to seeking to halt the counting of ballots "until meaningful access has been granted," the Trump campaign is also demanding to "review those ballots which were opened and counted while we did not have meaningful access."

Ryan Jarvi, spokesperson for Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, said the department hasn't yet been notified of the lawsuit by the court, but stressed the state "will always continue to protect the rights of all voters to have their ballots counted."

"Michigan's elections have been conducted transparently, with access provided for both political parties and the public, and using a robust system of checks and balances to ensure that all ballots are counted fairly and accurately," Jarvi said in a statement.

CBS News estimates the presidential race in Michigan is a toss-up, with Biden currently maintaining a slim lead over the president. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said there are roughly 100,000 votes left to be counted.

By Melissa Quinn
 

Trump campaign plans to "immediately" request recount in Wisconsin

Bill Stepien, Mr. Trump's campaign manager, said the Trump campaign will "immediately" request a recount in Wisconsin and is "well within" the threshold to do so. Biden currently leads Mr. Trump by more than 20,000 votes, with 99% of the expected total accounted for.

"Despite ridiculous public polling used as a voter suppression tactic, Wisconsin has been a razor thin race as we always knew that it would be," Stepien said in a statement. "There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results."

In Wisconsin, the candidate trailing in the results can request a recount if they are within 1% of the margin of victory, according to the state's manual outlining the process.

A candidate has three days to request a recount from when the last county reports its official results to the state, Wisconsin Elections Commission Administrator Meagan Wolfe told reporters in a briefing. Counties have until November 17 to report their results to the state.

The recount process is conducted at the county level, Wolfe said. 

Biden currently holds a lead of 20,533 votes out of a total 3,240,329 ballots cast, a lead of 0.6 percentage points. That lead could change if more votes are reported — CBS News still characterizes the race as a toss-up. Roughly 300 ballots in Willow Township, in Richland County, have yet to be counted, Wolfe said.

A recount requested in Wisconsin by third-party candidate Jill Stein in 2016 did little to change the outcome, with Mr. Trump actually adding 131 votes to his margin of victory over Hillary Clinton.

By Melissa Quinn
 

Wisconsin's chief election official discusses recount process

Wisconsin's chief election official, Meagan Wolfe, discussed the recount process Wednesday in a post-election briefing. 

Watch the full briefing here: 

Wisconsin chief election official gives updat... 28:31
By Sarah Lynch Baldwin
 

Georgia secretary of state says 200,000 ballots left to be counted

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger estimated that the state has 200,000 ballots left to be counted and between 40,000 to 50,000 early votes. It was not clear whether the 200,000 outstanding ballots include the early-vote totals.

"Every legal vote in Georgia will count," he told reporters in a news conference at the state capitol in Atlanta.

CBS News estimates the presidential race in Georgia remains a toss-up. Mr. Trump currently leads by a margin of just under 102,000 votes, with 92% of the expected vote counted.

Raffensperger said elections in the Peach State ran smoothly, noting that wait times across the state were below 10 minutes. He also praised the more than 50,000 residents who manned the polls.

"Elections matter," he said.

By Melissa Quinn
 

Pennsylvania has counted nearly half of all mail-in ballots, secretary of state says

Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar said at a press conference Wednesday that the state has counted nearly 50% of its mail-in ballots, with millions more to go. 

Upwards of 3 million mail-in absentee ballots were cast in the Keystone State — a 10-fold increase over previous elections, according to Boockvar. "Really could not have gone more smoothly in the middle of a pandemic," she said. "We're exactly where we said we would be."

"We are going to accurately count every single ballot," Boockvar said, noting that military and overseas ballots are still left to be counted. 

In September, the state's supreme court granted a three-day extension period after Election Day for mail-in ballots to be returned. The Pennsylvania Department of State last week told counties to segregate but count ballots received after Election Day, meaning any ballots received during the extension period will be put aside.

The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a request from the state GOP to expedite a review of the state court's decision, but left open the door to a review of the segregated ballots after the election. 

Despite the ruling, one county has said it will not be counting ballots received after November 3. Lancaster County's top elections official, a Republican, sent a letter to Boockvar on Tuesday saying it does not intend to tally mail-in ballots received within the extension because the decision could be overturned by the Supreme Court, which would force them to remove ballots that have already been counted.

The secretary of state said Wednesday that Lancaster's complaint is "not accurate." 

"It is absolutely feasible — and not even challenging," she said. "There are different ways to do it, you can use different machines, you can use different memory sticks, you can absolutely segregate them. That's not going to be a problem."

Boockvar said her office has been in communication with every county and voting system vendor about how to account for ballots received during the extension. 

Asked what will happen if a county does not comply, she said, "We'll cross that bridge when we get there. I expect them all to comply."

By Audrey McNamara
 

McConnell "not troubled at all" by Trump's suggestion of Supreme Court challenge

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell defended Mr. Trump for falsely claiming that he won reelection, although he acknowledged that the presidential race had not yet been decided.

"It's not unusual for people to claim they have won the election. I can think of that happening on numerous occasions," McConnell told reporters in Kentucky. "But, claiming to win the election is different from finishing the counting."

He also said he was "not troubled at all" by the president suggesting that the outcome of the election might be determined by the Supreme Court. The president cannot unilaterally bring a case to the Supreme Court, what it's unclear what case the Trump campaign would have if it challenged the counting of legally cast absentee ballots.

McConnell, who won his own closely watched reelection race on Tuesday evening, expressed measured confidence about Republicans maintaining their majority in the Senate. He said he believed there is a "chance we will know by the end of the day" if Republicans won races in states like Georgia and North Carolina.

"I don't know whether I'm going to be the defensive coordinator or the offensive coordinator," McConnell said, meaning he wasn't sure if he would be Senate majority or minority leader come January.

By Grace Segers
 

Biden campaign manager: "Joe Biden is on track to win this election"

Jennifer O'Malley Dillon, Biden's campaign manager, projected optimism about the former vice president's chances of winning the White House, telling reporters in a briefing that the campaign believes Biden is "on a clear path to victory," even as five battleground states are characterized as toss-ups by CBS New and votes are still being counted.

"Joe Biden is on track to win this election, and he will be the next president of the United States," O'Malley Dillon said.

O'Malley Dillon said the Biden campaign believes the former vice president will have clear leads in states that would put him over 270 electoral votes by this afternoon, and expects Biden to emerge victorious in Wisconsin, Nevada, Michigan and Pennsylvania. 

"We just need any three or four of those states above to get us to 270, so we think that this is already a foregone conclusion," she said.

CBS News estimates the presidential races in Georgia, North Carolina, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are toss-ups. Arizona, meanwhile is likely for Biden, while Nevada is likely for Biden.

"The American people get to pick their president. The president does not get to pick the people whose votes get counted," O'Malley Dillon said. "But let's be extremely clear about something — if Donald Trump got his wish and we stopped counting ballots right now, Vice President Joe Biden would be the next president of the United States."

Bob Bauer, a Biden campaign adviser, rejected Mr. Trump's threat to take a dispute over the presidential election to the Supreme Court.

"If you go to the Supreme Court today, drive around the building, you will not see Donald Trump and you will not see his lawyers," Bauer said. "He's not going to the Supreme Court of the United States to get the voting to stop. And if at some point, filing once again these specious claims rejected by court after court, if at some point he arrives before the Supreme Court with a novel proposition that ballots that were lawfully cast by eligible voters but not yet counted by the time Donald Trump wanted them counted, that somehow they don't count anymore, he will be in for one of the most embarrassing defeats a president has suffered before the highest court of the land."

O'Malley Dillon said the Biden camp has not heard from the Trump campaign, but said the American people can expect to hear from the former vice president today.

By Melissa Quinn
 

Philadelphia election official says mail-in count is ongoing: "It's going to be accurate"

Philadelphia's City Commissioner Lisa Deeley told reporters Wednesday morning that the number of mail-in ballots that have been counted in the city still stands at 141,000, out of a total of more than 350,000. 

Deeley refused to commit to a timeline for completing the count, but said updated numbers would be announced later Wednesday. 

"We're doing the best we can to get that count done as soon as possible," Deeley said. "We'll be done as soon as we're done."

Asked how the city would have fared with counting mail-in ballots if they had been allowed to begin before Election Day, Deeley said "it certainly would have made a difference ... Any little bit would have helped." Pennsylvania's GOP legislature blocked earlier Democratic efforts to allow election officials to start counting absentee ballots before Election Day, contributing to the backlog of ballots that now remain uncounted.

Deeley emphasized that the record-breaking number of mail-in ballots are being diligently counted. "It's going to be accurate, and it's going to get done," she said. 

The city has been broadcasting a livestream of the count on YouTube. 

President Trump falsely claimed victory in an address from the White House after 2 a.m., and vowed to challenge the orderly counting of millions of legally cast votes all the way to the Supreme Court.

Asked about Mr. Trump's comment, Deeley said: "I was working last night and did not hear the president."

By Audrey McNamara
 

Trump continues push to undermine legitimate vote-counting process

Mr. Trump continued his efforts to undermine confidence in the legitimate vote-counting process on Wednesday, falsely claiming in a tweet that "surprise ballot dumps" were responsible for narrowing his lead in certain states. Millions of ballots in several states remain uncounted.

"Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key States, in almost all instances Democrat run & controlled. Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted. VERY STRANGE, and the 'pollsters' got it completely & historically wrong!" Mr. Trump tweeted, a clear attempt to cast doubt on the electoral process. Mr. Trump's comments come after he falsely claimed early on Wednesday morning that he had won the election.

Ongoing counting of absentee ballots appear to be favoring Biden, as many Democrats opted to vote by mail due to concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

By Grace Segers
 

Biden campaign believes election is "moving to a conclusion in our favor"

The Biden campaign believes they will ultimately secure the votes needed to reach the 270 electoral votes required to win the presidency and that it will become clear in the coming days.

Votes continue to be counted in Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and other states. CBS News has not yet projected a winner in the presidential election, nor has any other major media outlet. 

"This is moving to a conclusion — and moving to a conclusion in our favor," a senior Biden campaign official said, adding that the campaign believes Biden has an "insurmountable" advantage in mail-in ballots in Michigan and that the campaign "feel[s] confident" in Pennsylvania.

By Ed O'Keefe
 

Wisconsin clerks to triple-check results

The Wisconsin Elections Commission said its staff will be ready to assist clerks Wednesday as they begin triple-checking election results.

"This includes randomly selecting 5% of reporting units for voting equipment audits which must occur before results are certified as required by law on December 1," the elections commission tweeted.

It said clerks worked tirelessly overnight to make sure all valid ballots were counted and reported accurately.

Wisconsin, which has 10 electoral votes, remains too close to call as Wednesday morning

By Sarah Lynch Baldwin
 

Officials in Pennsylvania to give updates

Philadelphia election officials are holding a press conference Wednesday morning, followed by an update from Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf's administration later in the morning on the state's election.

The news conference out of Philadelphia is scheduled to be held at 9:30 a.m., then Wolf's administration will give an update at 10:30 a.m. in Harrisburg. 

Watch the press conferences live on CBSN:

CBSN Live


 

Slovenian leader, taking cue from Trump, congratulates him prematurely on election

Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša congratulated President Donald Trump on Wednesday, despite there not yet being a result in the U.S. presidential election. First lady Melania Trump is from Slovenia.

Earlier, Mr. Trump falsely claimed he won the presidential race as millions of votes remained uncounted. 

"It's pretty clear that American people have elected ⁦@realDonaldTrump⁩ ⁦@Mike_Pence⁩ for #4moreyears," Janša tweeted. "More delays and facts denying from #MSM, bigger the final triumph for #POTUS. Congratulations ⁦@GOP⁩ for strong results across the #US."

Other European leaders immediately responded to Janša's statement. One E.U. parliamentarian from Germany, Nicola Beer, tweeted, "@realDonaldTrump has his deeply undemocratic, unjustified playbook on #Elections2020,  #EU Member States should NOT play along! The European Union, with all Member States, has a duty to show respect for every single vote. Period."

By Haley Ott
 

Georgia secretary of state to hold press conference

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger is holding a news conference Wednesday on the election and the work of Georgia's election officials. It is scheduled to be held at 11:30 a.m. ET at the Georgia State Capitol. 

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Pennsylvania governor: Officials working "diligently" to count votes

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf said in a tweet Wednesday: "County officials are diligently working to count your vote." As of Wednesday morning, the state remained a toss-up.

Earlier Wednesday, around 3 a.m., Wolf said over one million mail ballots in the state had not yet been counted.

"I promised Pennsylvanians that we would count every vote and that's what we're going to do," he said.

Both President Trump and Joe Biden see Pennsylvania and its 20 electoral votes as essential, a fact illustrated by their frequent visits during the campaign. Mr. Trump visited Pennsylvania 13 times, while Biden made 16 trips, and both were here on the eve of the election.

It may be awhile before the state is called if the results are close, since some ballots may be accepted up to three days after Election Day.

 

A look at where things stand

CBS News elections and surveys director Anthony Salvanto joined "CBS This Morning" Wednesday to discuss the ongoing vote count in several states.

He looked at how Georgia and North Carolina, which usually lean Republican, are progressing as votes are tallied. As of Wednesday morning, CBS News had the two states as toss-ups.

Watch here: 

Georgia still toss-up in historic election 04:08



 

"Every vote will count," says Michigan official

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said early Wednesday that state election officials worked through the night to count votes and "that work continues."

She said hundreds of thousands of ballots in Michigan's largest jurisdictions are still being counted, including Detroit, Grand Rapids, Flint, Warren and Sterling Heights.

"Every vote will count," Benson tweeted.

Michigan has 16 electoral votes up for grabs. 

 

Results in Kenosha and Green Bay boost Biden's narrow Wisconsin lead

Absentee ballots tallied in Kenosha and Green Bay increased Joe Biden's narrow lead early Wednesday in the key swing state of Wisconsin. With the ballots from the two cities, Biden's lead in the state widened to around 20,000 votes.

An absentee vote tally in Wisconsin's biggest county of Milwaukee, announced earlier Wednesday morning, first put Biden just ahead of Mr. Trump in the state.

Biden had been expected to gain an advantage in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania as the results of absentee ballots were reported. Many Democrats opted to vote absentee due to concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

With the overall state tally so close, however, CBS News has not yet projected whether Biden or Mr. Trump will win Wisconsin's 10 votes in the Electoral College. As of 7:15 a.m. ET, the state remained a toss-up. 

By Tucker Reals
 

Wisconsin governor: "An election doesn't end when an elected official says they won"

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers said early Wednesday that clerks and election workers were "continuing to do their important work," as the state remained a toss-up.

The Democratic governor also appeared to push back against President Trump's false claim that he won the election as millions of votes remain uncounted.

"An election doesn't end when an elected official says they won—it ends when every vote has been counted," Evers tweeted. 

Wisconsin has 10 electoral votes, and CBS News had it as a toss-up as of 7:15 a.m. ET. It was one of three states President Trump flipped in 2016 that launched him into the White House, when he won it by the slim margin of 22,748 votes.

 

Nevada says no more results to announce until Thursday morning

With the margin in counted votes close early Wednesday morning, Nevada election officials said they would not announce any further results until Thursday morning, leaving the fate of the state's six Electoral College votes in the balance.

The Nevada Secretary of State's Elections Division announced the hiatus for election result updates on Twitter, saying that as of early Wednesday, the state had counted all the votes cast in person before and on Election Day, and all mail-in ballots received up to Tuesday. 

That leaves the postal votes received on Election Day, and any that come in over the next week but are deemed legitimate under state election laws, plus provisional ballots, left to count. 

With about 86% of the votes counted, Biden was leading Mr. Trump by less than a 1% margin, or fewer than 9,000 votes.

By Tucker Reals
 

CBS News projects Biden to win Hawaii

CBS News projects that when all the votes are counted, Joe Biden will win the state of Hawaii. 

The state's four Electoral College votes put Joe Biden ahead of President Trump in the national tally by nine, with a projected total of 224 for Biden and 213 for Mr. Trump at this stage.

By Tucker Reals
 

Twitter and Facebook flag posts after Trump's false election claims

Both Twitter and Facebook reacted to President Trump's false claims about the election by flagging posts on their sites.

"Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process," Twitter said in a banner blocking a tweet by Mr. Trump, which misleadingly said he was "up big" and, without evidence, accused Democrats of trying to "steal" the election.

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Facebook said it was flagging posts by both candidates to make sure that people know that votes were still being counted. Facebook owns Instagram and said it would also flag relevant posts on that platform.

"Once President Trump began making premature claims of victory, we started running notifications on Facebook and Instagram that votes are still being counted and a winner is not projected," Facebook said in a statement. "We're also automatically applying labels to both candidates' posts with this information." 

Under fire for not having done enough to police disinformation during the 2016 presidential election, social media companies created a number of new policies in the leadup to this year's vote, including taking down or flagging misleading content, downranking misleading posts and directing users to reputable news sites.

By Haley Ott
 

Results from Milwaukee County give Biden narrow lead in Wisconsin

Results from absentee ballots cast in Milwaukee County trickled in early Wednesday, providing Biden with a narrow lead in the critical swing state of Wisconsin. The county is the largest in the state, encompassing the city of Milwaukee. With the ballots from Milwaukee, Biden's lead in the state has widened to around 11,000 votes.

Results from absentee ballots from Green Bay and Kenosha, two other cities which skew Democratic, have yet to be released.

Biden is expected to gain an advantage in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania as the results of absentee ballots are reported. Many Democrats opted to vote absentee due to concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

With the overall state tally so close, CBS News has not yet projected whether Biden or Mr. Trump will win Wisconsin's 10 votes in the Electoral College.

By Grace Segers
 

Biden camp accuses Trump of "naked effort to take away the democratic rights of American citizens"

Joe Biden's campaign for the presidency tore into President Trump early Wednesday morning for his claims to have won the election as votes were still being counted. Biden campaign manager Jen O'Malley Dillon, in a statement released just before 4 a.m. Eastern, accused Mr. Trump of a "naked effort to take away the democratic rights of American citizens" for appearing to call on states to stop counting legally-cast ballots.

"The president's statement tonight about trying to shut down the counting of duly cast ballots was outrageous, unprecedented, and incorrect," Dillon said, adding: "Never before in our history has a president of the United States sought to strip Americans of their voice in a national election. Having encouraged Republican efforts in multiple states to prevent the legal counting of these ballots before Election Day, now Donald Trump is saying these ballots can't be counted after Election Day either."

"It was incorrect because it will not happen. The counting will not stop. It will continue until every duly cast vote is counted. Because that is what our laws — the laws that protect every Americans' constitutional right to vote — require," she said, vowing that the campaign had "legal teams standing by ready to deploy to resist" any effort by the president "to go to court to try to prevent the proper tabulation of votes."

By Tucker Reals
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