GPAN report on 2020 U.S. presidential election : Elections free and fair

Despite concerns of the United States presidential election getting rigged, the election process was free and fair. Joe Biden is the president-elect of the United States of America. What made this election different is that the COVID-19 pandemic meant more people had to send their ballots by mail rather than vote in person. As a result, states across the country had a mix of in-person and mail-in ballots. The unprecedented influx of mail-in ballots meant that it took longer for each state to count them, which dragged the election past the official Election Day. Despite what Internet rumors say, mail-in ballots are legal. Each state sets their own rules for voting, which means each state has different deadlines for sending in mail-in ballots. The United States does not decide its president by a direct election. Instead, the final decider is the Electoral College. The American Electoral College is a group of presidential electors selected to pick the next president and vice president. Each state is designated a number of electors determined by each state’s population. For example, California, the most populous state, has the most electors — 55. The candidate who gets the most votes in each state wins the total number of electoral votes in that state. Currently, there are 538 electors, which means the winner must get a total of 270 electoral votes. The Electoral College dates back to slavery. In the early 1800s, shortly after America’s founding, the country’s founders had to create a system for electing presidents. There was tension between the northern, slave-free states and the southern, slaveholding states. Since slaves were considered “property” rather than people, slaves were only counted as full people in the state’s census. However, since southern states’ populations had lots of slaves, this meant that the northern states would overpower the southern states in both the legislature and direct elections. Therefore, the Electoral College was created to give the southern states leeway in how they counted their slaves as part of their population, which would determine their number of electors. On Election Day, neither candidate had enough electors from each state to win the Electoral College but, since Donald Trump was ahead of Biden that night, he declared a premature victory. But news organizations quickly said that was not true — by Election Day, Trump was not the winner. As more mail-in ballots came in the night after Election Day, Biden pulled ahead. On Saturday, November 7, 2020, Joe Biden won enough electors to win the Electoral College, which means he won the presidency and is the current president-elect. Voter turnout was larger than usual, thanks to more people sending their ballots by mail. Biden won both the popular vote, with 75.4 million votes, and the Electoral College. Currently, Trump is advancing legal challenges to the vote results and many in his base are protesting. However, given how wide the margin is between Biden and Trump (Biden has 75.4 million popular votes compared to Trump’s 70.9 million), it is very unlikely a recount would work out in Trump’s favor. 

Report Compiled by Adam Hudson

Global Pan Africanism Network Observer And the Country Representative for United States.


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