November 4, 2020


Take a deep breath and go to sleep, America, because a presidential winner won't be declared tonight (John Haltiwanger, 11/04/20, Business Insider)

[W]ith an unprecedented number of Americans voting by mail in the 2020 election, it was always unlikely that a winner would be declared on election night. 

There are never full results on the day of elections, even when news outlets are able to declare a winner based on available tallies.

Though President Donald Trump has repeatedly stated that there should be a full result on the day of the election, that's not how it works. It always takes time to process and count votes, and it's a normal part of the electoral process. 

The sheer volume of mail-in votes in 2020 guaranteed that this process would be complicated and take longer than usual -- particularly in states where officials are limited in their capacity to process and count ballots prior to Election Day. Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan -- three states that were crucial to President Donald Trump's 2016 electoral college victory -- qualify in this regard. 

At roughly 12 am ET on Wednesday, huge portions of the vote in those states remained outstanding, according to Insider and Decision Desk HQ. Officials in these states had warned ahead of Election Day that it could take days to count all of the ballots. 

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson late on Tuesday said that the state would count all mail-in ballots within 24 hours.

Similarly, Meagan Wolfe, Wisconsin's chief election official, on Tuesday night said that some larger jurisdictions in the state would be counting ballots into Wednesday morning. 

And more than 40% of the vote was still unreported Pennsylvania a little after midnight on Wednesday, per Decision Desk HQ's estimations.

Posted by at November 4, 2020 12:00 AM


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