Joe Biden and Kamala Harris Elected as President and Vice-President

Joe Biden speaking at a podium and Kamala Harris seated behind him at a campaign event in August 2020.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris at a campaign event in August 2020.

The Associated Press and several other news organizations have called the 2020 presidential election in favor of Democratic candidate Joesph Biden. The incumbent Republican president, Donald Trump, has yet to formally concede defeat in the election and has launched legal actions to challenge results. However, the vast majority of these challenges have been dismissed and vote recounts in Wisconsin and Georgia appear to confirm Biden has won in those states. Additionally, on November 23 the General Services Administration (GSA) approved Joe Biden’s transition team to begin work. The GSA is an independent government agency that supports other federal agencies and helps coordinate the change of presidential administrations. 

Current tallies show that Biden has 306 electoral votes and that Trump has 232, with a candidate needing 270 electoral votes to win the presidency. The presidential electors of the Electoral College will formally vote on December 14, 2020, and the elected president and vice president will be inaugurated on January 20, 2021. 

The 2020 United States presidential election was historic in many ways. An estimated two-thirds of eligible American voters participated, marking the highest voter turnout since 1900. Over 101 million people voted early, the highest-ever level of early voting. Each candidate received more votes than any other presidential candidate in history—surpassing former President Barack Obama’s total of just under 70 million votes in 2008. Joe Biden received over 81 million votes and Donald Trump received over 74 million votes. Former Vice President Joe Biden will be the oldest person ever to take office as president at 78 years old. His running mate, Senator Kamala Harris, will be the first woman, African American, and Asian American to take office as vice president.

Image credit: © Drew Angerer/Getty Images North America 

Related Links: 

  • What is the Electoral College?
    An explanation of the Electoral College from the Library of Congress.
    (Source: Library of Congress, December 3, 2020)  
  • The GSA and Presidential Transitions
    This site explains how the General Services Administration provides support during presidential changes.
    (Source: U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), December 3, 2020)

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