US election results: Joe Biden to 'immediately' reverse Trump policies and reengage with world

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Marcus Parekh
·67 min read
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Joe Biden is reportedly planning to quickly reverse four years of Donald Trump’s foreign policy by reengaging with multilateral institutions.

Acting through executive orders, a legally binding directive from the President that does not require approval from Congress, Mr Biden will, according to The Washington Post, immediately return the United States to the Paris Climate Agreement and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Mr Trump withdrew the US from the Paris agreement in one of his earliest acts as President, but the departure period only finished on Wednesday. He moved to formally extract the US from the WHO in July after accusing it of being under Chinese control.

Mr Biden’s transition team has been quietly preparing for months for his victory and the report claims that they have put together an entire book of campaign commitments to guide them in their early decision making.

With control of the Senate set to be decided by two run-off elections in Georgia in January, Mr Biden may find himself reliant on executive action if Republicans in Congress block his legislative agenda. 

The early days of any presidency involve filling thousands of civil service positions, many subject to Senate confirmation, which can have a significant impact on the direction of the country.

12:22 AM

And that's a wrap for Sunday

That's all for today's blog.

Here are some of the latest top stories on the US election:

You can follow all of Monday's developments here

11:50 PM

Elizabeth Warren fires a warning shot

Massachusetts senator and former presidential candidate, Elizabeth Warren has warned the incoming administration not to make too many concessions to major concessions and their army of lobbyists.

Ms Warren is on the left of the party and was among Democrats who voiced concern that the party had too cozy a relationship with Wall Street.

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On Twitter she put the Biden administration that it should not follow the example of previous Democrat administrations.

"In the past, efforts to build "unity" and "consensus" in Washington have too often meant turning over the keys to giant corporations and their lobbyists," she wrote.

"We can't let that happen again."

11:31 PM

Ted Cruz still believes Trump has a road to victory

As other senior Republicans urge Donald Trump to thrown in the towel, Ted Cruz is insisting that the president still has a road to victory.

Mr Cruz - nicknamed "lying Ted" by Mr Trump during their bruising contest for the 2016 presidential nomination - has urged his former rival to fight on.

Ted Cruz - Graeme Jennings/Washington Examiner
Ted Cruz - Graeme Jennings/Washington Examiner

He recalled the time it took to settle the contest between George Bush and Al Gore, which finally ended up in the Supreme Court.

“It went twice to the Florida Supreme Court. It went twice to the U.S. Supreme Court. It took 36 days to resolve, and we got an answer," he said on Fox News.

He added, “I would expect a similar process to play out here, despite the media trying to tell everyone, ‘Give up, go home, we know who we want to win.’”

11:07 PM

Dogs return to the White House

The White House is preparing to ready two dogs, having been a canine-free zone during the Trump presidency.

One of the four-legged residents will be Major, an Alsatian and the first rescue dog to be adopted by a president. He will share the title of "first dog" with Champ, also an Alsatian.

Major and Champ will be following in the pawsteps of several famous dogs who made the White House their home.

US First Lady Michelle Obama and Jill Biden, wife of US Vice President Joe Biden, and the Bidens' dog Champ - Saul Loeb/AFP
US First Lady Michelle Obama and Jill Biden, wife of US Vice President Joe Biden, and the Bidens' dog Champ - Saul Loeb/AFP

The first were Juno, Mark and Satan, the pets of John Adams. Thomas Jefferson had Bergère and Grizzle, who competed for presidential affection with two bear cups - before they were handed over to a museum.

Abraham Lincoln had Fido, who was killed by a drunk with a life a. few marks after the president was assassinated.

Richard Nixon had three dogs - King Timahoe, Vicki and Pasha, while his successor Gerald ford owned a golden retriever called Liberty.

Bill Clinton had Buddy, who had to rub along with Socks the cat and George Bush's dogs included Miss Beazley - who was nicknamed Beazley Weazley.

Barack Obama shared with two water dogs, Bo and Sunny.

Mr Trump was not a dog lover although he did tweet out a dog involved in the capturing and killing  the Leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdad.

The dog's name is still classified. 

10:38 PM

First Lady echoes Donald Trump's remarks on the election

Melania Trump has echoed her husband's remarks about the election on Twitter. Making her first public statement on the election she wrote.

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“The American people deserve fair elections. “Every legal – not illegal – vote should be counted,” she continued. 

“We must protect our democracy with complete transparency."

10:13 PM

Right-wing news channels benefit from Trump falling out with Fox

Lesser-known conservative news outlets are already seeing the benefits of Trump supporters' exodus from Fox News, writes Laurence Dodds from Arizona.

Newsmax, a cable news channel that advertises itself as "real news for real people", said that its number of viewers per minute had surpassed CNBC and Fox Business in the tumultuous day after polls closed.

It boasted of being the first network to call Florida for Donald Trump, and has enjoyed a huge influx of conservative viewers furious about Fox News's decision to call Arizona for Joe Biden.

The company has signed Mr Trump's former press secretary Sean Spicer as a host, though it has been accused of telling subscribers that vaccines don't work and hawking its own "advanced formula" dietary supplements.

A more radical and controversial winner is San-Diego-based One American News Network, or OANN. It has been one of the President's most zealous backers, and its owner Robert Herring Sr has reportedly directed it to squash and promote stories depending on his talking points. 

It also has an intense penchant for conspiracy theories, having blamed the Syrian White Helmets for chemical weapons attacks perpetrated by President Bashar al-Assad and claimed that there was "mounting evidence" that George Soros, Bill Gates, Anthony Fauci and the Chinese government were working together to exploit the coronavirus pandemic.

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10:04 PM

Stacy Abrams confident Democrats can win the two outstanding senate seats in Georgia.

Stacy Abrams confident Democrats can win the two outstanding  senate seats in Georgia.

Both senate races in Georgia are set for a run-off in January and Stacy Abrams is refusing to write off the Democrats' chances in what has recently been regarded as a Republican stronghold.

The Republicans are expected to win the outstanding races in North Carolina and Alaska.

Stacy Abrams - Butch Dill
Stacy Abrams - Butch Dill

Should the Democrats win the Georgia races, the senate would be left with Republicans having 50 seats as would the Democrats, taking into account two left-leaning independent senators Angus King of Maine and Vermont's Bernie Sanders.

This would leave Kamala Harris, the vice–president elect,with the casting vote  - giving the Democrats control of the Senate.

"I want to push back against this anachronistic notion that we can't win in Georgia," she said on CNN. She said the party will have investment and resources it has never had before in the state.

Ms Abrams, who is seen as the architect of the Mr Biden' s victory in Georgia - assuming the result is not reversed by a recount.

09:29 PM

Navajo nation welcomes Biden-Harris win

Jonathan Nez, president of the Navajo nation,  calls for a native American to be a member of the Biden transitioin team.

Navajo nation was hit hard by coronavirus - Andrew Hay/Reuters
Navajo nation was hit hard by coronavirus - Andrew Hay/Reuters

He made his plea as he welcomed the result of the election on CNN, but added: "They should not take the native American vote for granted.

"There should be a tribal leader on the transition team," he added.

"Look at what happened here in tribal communities throughout the country. 30 to 40% of the Navajo people don't have running water. 

"So here, our priority is giving you infrastructure and there should be a plan to improve the quality of life returns of water, electricity broadband throughout Indian country."

09:06 PM

Pressure grows on Donald Trump to go quietly

Donald Trump was under mounting pressure to concede the Presidential race on Sunday night as former Republican president George W Bush said the election was "fundamentally fair".

Mr Bush became the most prominent Republican to draw a line under the election, saying he had called Joe Biden, the president-elect, and Kamala Harris, the vice president-elect, to congratulate them.

With the Trump campaign escalating calls for donations to fight legal challenges, multiple broadcasters reported that the US president's wife, Melania, was privately urging him to concede. Mrs Trump disputed the claims, tweeting: "The American people deserve fair elections. Every legal – not illegal – vote should be counted. We must protect our democracy with complete transparency."

READ MORE: US election: Pressure grows on Donald Trump to go quietly

08:49 PM

Trump supporters chant 'Stop the Steal'

To chants of "this isn't over" and "stop the steal", supporters of Donald Trump gathered across the US over the weekend to cast doubt over the presidential election result, writes Rozina Sabur.

In scenes which showed just how divided the country is over last Tuesday's vote, supporters of Mr Trump turned up outside state Capitols in their thousands, some armed and many insisting that they would not accept the result.

The US president has himself refused to concede, arguing the electoral process was compromised by rampant fraud, leading to thousands of his supporters to call for a recount of the votes.

READ MORE:  Trump supporters chant 'Stop the Steal' as they refuse to accept election results ​

08:38 PM

Mitt Romney: Donald Trump will still be a '900lb gorilla' in Republican Party

Donald Trump will remain a "900lb gorilla" in the Republican Party and there will be no renunciation of his political ideology after he ceases to be president, according to senior party figures.

Mitt Romney, one of Mr Trump's most vocal Republican critics, accepted that the president's worldview would have "an enormous impact on our party going forward".

Powerful party mandarins have been poring over results from Congressional races last week which showed that Republicans fared significantly better than expected, particularly where local candidates allied themselves with "Trumpism".

READ MORE:  Donald Trump will still be a '900lb gorilla' in Republican Party ​

08:17 PM

Trump faces a battery of legal cases

Donald Trump faces a blizzard of lawsuits and even the potential threat of jail time when he leaves office, writes David Millward

From allegations of tax evasion to potential charges arising out of the Mueller investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election, the outgoing president and his legal team can expect to spend considerable time in court.

Estimates of the number of cases vary, with some experts suggesting that there could be more than a dozen.

Before the 2016 election Mr Trump boasted that he could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and people would still vote for him.

Experts believe that the courts may not be so forgiving once Mr Trump leaves the White House.

08:06 PM

Saudi king and Crown Prince congratulate Biden

Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz and his son Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have released a brief statement congratulating U.S. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on winning the presidential election, state news agency SPA reported.

As other Arab countries raced to congratulate the Democrat, the kingdom's de facto ruler, Prince Mohammed, had remained silent on the defeat of President Donald Trump, whose Middle East policies and staunch opposition to Iran had Riyadh's backing.

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07:57 PM

Iran's Zarif calls on neighbours to cooperate following Trump's defeat

Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called on his country's neighbours to cooperate in achieving common interests, following U.S President Donald Trump's defeat in the presidential election.

"Trump is gone, and we and our neighbours will stay. Betting on foreigners does not bring security, and disappoints. We extend our hands to our neighbours to cooperate in achieving the common interests of our peoples and countries. We call on everyone to embrace dialogue as the only way to end differences and tensions. Together to build a better future for our region," Zarif tweeted in Arabic.

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07:48 PM

'Donald Trump's disgraceful behaviour risks doing lasting damage'

That the leader of the free world is disputing an election result is deeply troubling for America, writes John Bolton.

The US presidential race has now widely been called for Joe Biden. The counting has been slower than we'd like, and legal challenges to the process are under way. But if things end as now seems likely, whatever damage the electoral process and the nation’s institutions have suffered in recent days is easily repairable. After the 2000 election, Democratic nominee Al Gore precipitated a contentious recount in Florida – I spent 33 days there on George W Bush’s legal team – and America recovered in due course. We will recover from this, too.

READ MORE: Donald Trump's disgraceful behaviour risks doing lasting damage

07:40 PM

How Kamala Harris's mother set her on the path to history

Amid the fanfare of her history-making victory speech on Saturday evening, in which she introduced herself as America’s first woman Vice President, Kamala Harris was careful to mention the lodestar influence of one particular figure: her mother, a  biologist who moved to California from southern India in the Fifties to study at Berkeley, and who died in 2009. 

“We are so grateful to … the woman most responsible for my presence here today, my mother, Shyamala Gopalan, who’s always in our hearts,” Harris told the drive-in crowd in Wilmington, Delaware, Joe Biden’s hometown. “When she came here from India at the age of 19, she maybe didn’t quite imagine this moment. But she believed so deeply in an America where a moment like this is possible. So I’m thinking about her.”

READ MORE:  How Kamala Harris's mother set her on the path to White House history ​

07:29 PM

Jared Kushner wipes Twitter account

President Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner appears to have wiped his Twitter account clean, with no tweets available to view.

This comes as CNN report that Mr Kushner, who is married to Ivanka, the president's daughter, has approached Mr Trump about possibly conceding the presidential race.

07:11 PM

Trump attacks 'Lamestream Media'

Donald Trump has released his latest attack via Twitter, asking "since when does the Lamestream Media call who our next president will be?"

Media projections have been used as the standard barometer for calling American presidential elections since election coverage began in 1948.

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07:01 PM

Melania Trump: Every legal - not illegal - vote should be counted

Melania Trump has just tweeted, saying the "American people deserve free elections."

Continuing to use some of the attack lines used by her husband and his legal team to dispute the result of Tuesday's election, the First Lady said "every legal - not illegal - vote should be counted".

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06:53 PM

US election deniers are behaving like diehard Remainers

Why is the world only now laughing at the more deranged attempts of fanatics to undermine a democratic vote, asks Tom Harwood.

Denial. Anger. Litigation. Protest. Excuses. The response of hardcore Trump supporters to Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 US Presidential election looks distinctly familiar to those of us who have spent the last few years covering the Brexit battles in the UK.

READ MORE: US election deniers are behaving like diehard Remainers​

06:41 PM

Split between Trump and Fox News was one of the election's biggest surprises

"Et tu, Fox News?" Donald Trump might have reflected as he watched the support of his favourite news network ebb away, writes Nick Allen.

In reality, Mr Trump probably directed something less Shakespearean at the TV screen. Perhaps a shoe.

The split between the White House and Fox has been one of the most unexpected dramas of the 2020 election. Loyal in 2016 and throughout Mr Trump's presidency, the network tempered its support this time.

READ MORE:  Split between Donald Trump and Fox News was one of the US election's biggest surprises ​

06:26 PM

Socially-distanced crowd at Biden speech celebrate dawn of new era

It had been a long week, and an even longer four years, writes Nick Allen.

Among Joe Biden's supporters who watched his victory apeech in Delaware there was, more than triumphalism, a sense of overwhelming relief, a kind of post-Trump shock syndrome.

They sat on car roofs toasting victory, and danced to George Michael's "Freedom," but the mood was restrained. This was not a Super Bowl-winning type of celebration.

Everyone wore a mask, some emblazoned with the Biden-Harris logo, and many remained socially distanced. One man repeatedly raised his arm in the air yelling "Science!" while children ran around chanting "Go Joe Biden!" An enormous US flag, hoisted from two cranes, fluttered overhead.

READ MORE: Socially-distanced crowd at Biden speech celebrate dawn of new era​

06:12 PM

Former President George W Bush congratulates Biden on win

Former U.S. President George W. Bush, a Republican, says he has spoken to President-elect Joe Biden, a Democrat, to congratulate him on his victory.

In a statement, Bush said Americans can have confidence the U.S. election was "fundamentally fair, its integrity will be upheld, and its outcome is clear."

"We must come together for the sake of our families and neighbours, and for our nation and its future," the statement continued.

Bush pledged to help the new president in any way he can, saying that Biden is a good man who will unify the country.

He added President Donald Trump has the right to request recounts and pursue legal challenges.

06:00 PM

Lindsey Graham urges Trump to 'fight hard', not concede

One of the most prominent Republicans in the US Congress has urged Donald Trump to "fight hard" and not concede his loss to Joe Biden in the race for the White House, saying unfounded allegations of fraud by the president must be investigated.

"We will work with Biden if he wins, but Trump has not lost," Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina said on Fox News. "Do not concede, Mr. President. Fight hard."

Without citing any evidence, Sen. Graham alleged "shenanigans" related to mailed ballots, the method a large number of Americans preferred when voting due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"It's the wild-wild west when it comes to mail-in balloting," said Sen. Graham, a former Trump critic turned unstinting supporter.

There is no evidence that fraud has ever been a significant problem affecting mail-in voting in US presidential elections.

"Everything we worried about has come true, so if we don't fight back in 2020 we're never going to win again presidentially," he nevertheless added.

05:49 PM

Taliban expect Biden to abide by Afghan pullout deal

The Taliban say they expect Joe Biden to abide by the deal signed with his predecessor Donald Trump's administration that paved the way for withdrawing American forces from Afghanistan.

In February, Trump's administration signed a deal with the Taliban to fully disengage from Afghanistan in exchange for several security guarantees and a commitment from the insurgents to stop trans-national jihadist groups such as Al-Qaeda and Islamic State from operating in the country.

However, Biden's victory in the US election has raised hopes among ordinary citizens that he might slow what some see as a too-hasty withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan. The Taliban said they expected Biden's government to stick to the deal signed on February 29.

"We signed the agreement with the American government not a person," Mohammad Naeem, a spokesman for the Taliban, told AFP. "We hope that the process that has started will not be weakened, but rather strengthened."

The US-Taliban deal agreed to withdraw all American forces from Afghanistan by May 2021. The withdrawal of troops has been a cornerstone of Trump's plans to end America's longest war. Since the signing of the deal, the US military has shut several bases and pulled out thousands of troops as agreed.

"The ongoing intra-Afghan talks is part of the agreement (with the US) and shall continue unaffected," Naeem said.

05:38 PM

How tragedy shaped the US president-elect

In the US presidential race, it has often been personal – just take the first presidential debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden as an example. Trump claimed Biden’s son Hunter was discharged from the military for cocaine use – a claim Biden denied.

Indeed, Hunter has been an unwitting player in the race for weeks now, with rumours linking him to corrupt business dealings in China and Ukraine. Trump has even gone as far as calling the Bidens an “organised crime family”. 

To give a clearer picture of Joe Biden, we have delved into his past to uncover his upbringing and family history.

READ MORE:  Joe Biden’s family tree: how tragedy shaped the US president-elect ​

05:26 PM

Kamala Harris' ancestral Indian village celebrates her US election victory

05:15 PM

Melania urges Trump to concede, report CNN

First Lady Melania Trump has joined the growing list of advisers urging President Trump to concede the election, according to reports from CNN.

Donald Trump has so far refused to admit he has lost, despite all major news outlets calling the race for Joe Biden and the Democrat delivering a victory speech last night.

Rumours were swirling this morning that the First Lady is "counting down the minutes" until her husband leaves office so she can commence divorce proceedings.

Former Apprentice star Omarosa Manigault Newman claimed that the First Lady is "repulsed" by her husband at times.

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05:06 PM

Donald Trump is playing golf (again)

Donald Trump is spending his first day as a lame duck president golfing.

Trump arrived at his Virginia golf club just before 3pm GMT on Sunday for the second day in a row. He was welcomed by several protesters, including one who held a sign that read, "Orange Crushed."

Trump was also on the golf course Saturday when The Associated Press and other news outlets called the race for his Democratic rival, Joe Biden, because he had won enough votes to deny Trump a second term.

Trump has yet to concede the race and is continuing to baselessly dispute the results even though there is no evidence of widespread fraud.

04:55 PM

Black maternal healthcare likely to be key priority for Kamala Harris

Black maternal health care is likely to be high on the agenda of vice-president-elect Kamala Harris, writes David Millward.

As a senator, she introduced the Maternal Care Access and Reducing Emergencies (Maternal CARE) Act to help establish health equity for pregnant black women.

Last year researchers at the Centres for Disease Control in the US found that Black, American Indian, and Alaska Native women were two to three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than their white counterparts.

They identified conditions which increased the mortality risk including heart problems and hypertension.

The issue was brought into sharp focus by the difficult birth of Serena Williams' daughter Alexis Olympia in September 17.

The 14-times Wimbledon winner suffered serious complications after her baby was delivered via an emergency c-section. Complaining of shortness of breath, it emerged she was suffering from a life-threatening pulmonary embolism.

04:45 PM

Kamala Harris 'inspiring young girls across India'

You’d be forgiven for thinking Diwali celebrations had begun one week early in the small Indian village of Thulasendrapuram, writes Joe Wallen.

But, it was here, some 8,000 miles from the White House in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu that the grandmother of Kamala Harris, the next vice-president of the United States, was born.

A cheer erupts amongst a group of men, sitting around the village’s leader, all transfixed by the updates on their phones.

“From a country like India, in which women have very little privilege, it is still extremely difficult for a woman to dream about even becoming a village president,” Malarvannan, the village’s leader, told the Sunday Telegraph.

READ MORE:  Harris is living the dream that is inspiring young girls across India ​

04:34 PM

With cases soaring, Biden to announce Covid-19 task force

Making the resurgent coronavirus his immediate priority, U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on Monday will announce a 12-member task force to deal with the pandemic.

Biden spent much of his election campaign criticizing President Donald Trump’s handling of the pandemic, which has now caused the deaths of 237,000 people in America. The United States saw a record number of new infections last week, with the total number of cases nearing 10 million.

The coronavirus task force will be charged with developing a blueprint for containing the disease once Biden takes office in January. It will be headed by three co-chairs, former surgeon general Vivek Murthy, former Food and Drug Administration commissioner David Kessler, and Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith of Yale University, according to two people familiar with the matter.

"I will spare no effort - or commitment - to turn this pandemic around," Biden said in his victory speech on Saturday in Wilmington.

The task force announcement will kick off a busy week that will see Biden and Vice President-elect, Kamala Harris, moving forward with the presidential transition on a number of fronts, with Biden turning in earnest to the task of building his administration ahead of his Jan. 20 inauguration.

On Sunday, his transition team will launch a new website, BuildBackBetter.com, and a new social media handle, @transition46, to provide the public with information on the handover.

04:25 PM

Biden visits church

President-elect Joe Biden arrives at St. Joseph on the Brandywine Roman Catholic Church in Wilmington - ANGELA WEISS /AFP
President-elect Joe Biden arrives at St. Joseph on the Brandywine Roman Catholic Church in Wilmington - ANGELA WEISS /AFP
President-elect Biden spent his Sunday with family at church after declaring himself the victor in the election last night - JONATHAN ERNST /REUTERS 
President-elect Biden spent his Sunday with family at church after declaring himself the victor in the election last night - JONATHAN ERNST /REUTERS
President-elect Joe Biden arrives at St. Joseph on the Brandywine Roman Catholic Church in Wilmington - ANGELA WEISS /AFP
President-elect Joe Biden arrives at St. Joseph on the Brandywine Roman Catholic Church in Wilmington - ANGELA WEISS /AFP

04:16 PM

Don't ditch progressives warns AOC

Radical New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has warned Joe Biden not to marginalise the party's insurgent wing when he enters the White House.

With the Democrats still celebrating their election triumph, Ms Ocasio-Cortez signalled, in an interview with the New York Times, the difficulties Mr Biden will face holding together a coalition of moderates and the left once he enters the White House.

While Mr Biden is on course for a comprehensive victory, the Democrats lost ground in the House and failed to capture several Senate seats which they had hoped to flip.

The sniping has already started.

"Because before we even had any data yet in a lot of these races, there was already finger-pointing that this was progressives’ fault and that this was the fault of the Movement for Black Lives," she said.

04:07 PM

Biden's five greatest challenges

Joe Biden faces arguably the toughest inbox of any incoming president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt entered the White House with the United States in the teeth of the Great Depression. The below video takes a look at the five biggest challenges facing Mr Biden ahead of his inauguration.

 

04:01 PM

Mitt Romney warns Biden off progressive policies

Mitt Romney, the Utah senator who was the Republican Party’s 2012 presidential nominee, gave an interview this morning reminding Joe Biden of how difficult it could be to get the most progressive parts of his policy agenda through Congress, writes Ben Riley-Smith, our US Editor. 

The Republicans have a decent chance of retaining a majority of the US Senate, with the balance being 50 Republicans to 48 Democrats after this month’s elections with the two last seats being decided in January. (A 50-50 tie sees the US vice president, who will be Democratic, cast the deciding vote.)

Mr Romney has been one of the first Republican senators to congratulate Mr Biden on his victory. He pledged in his CNN interview to work with the President-elect where he could, listing examples. They included improving parts of the "Obamacare" health care law, reducing drug prices and extending child tax credit.

Mr Romney went on: “We will be able to work together on health care, and education and the environment. Does that mean we will be able to see eye-to-eye entirely? No.”

He gave another list, one of progressive policies he argued had been rejected by the US public, some of which are central planks of Mr Biden’s legislative agenda.

Mr Romney said the public had rejected a Green New Deal, that progressive version of bold but expensive climate change action. Mr Biden has said his plans were inspired by it.

Mr Romney said the public had rejected tax rises. Mr Biden had proposed overturning Mr Trump’s $1.5 trillion tax cut. That will not happen if the Republicans hold the Senate.

Mr Biden had hoped to “transition” away from the oil industry. Mr Romney made clear the Republicans would fight an attempt to end the use of fossil fuels.

Mr Romney also claimed the public had rejected Medicare-for-All, which would provide government-funding health care for all Americans.

That, actually, is not Mr Biden’s policy. He fought against the proposal, created by and most identified with left-wing senator Bernie Sanders, during the Democratic primaries.

But Mr Biden does want to create a “public option” to existing Obamacare laws which would allow Americans to opt into government-funded health care plans. 

“The American people are more conservative than they are progressive,” Mr Romney said. It was a shot across the bows of the Biden camp.  

03:38 PM

Chris Christie demands his friend Trump prove election fraud

Ben Riley-Smith, US Editor, has this on one of the more eye-catching Sunday political show interviews: 

There are few Republicans who know Donald Trump better than Chris Christie, the former New Jersey governor.

They have had a turbulent relationship at times, clashing publicly, but for parts of Mr Trump’s rise to the US presidency and time in office, Mr Christie has been there helping. 

The former governor of New Jersey advised Mr Trump near the end of his 2016 campaign and initially headed up the Trump 2016 transition team, before being removed from that role.

More recently, Mr Christie helped prep the US president for his first debate against Joe Biden at the end of September. He was among those who caught Covid-19 during the White House outbreak around then. 

So it is interesting when Mr Christie publicly breaks with the President, as he has been doing to a degree in recent days and did so again in an ABC interview this morning.

Mr Christie said his message to the president over his election allegations was this: “If your basis for not conceding is that there was voter fraud then show us, show us. Because if you can’t show us we can’t do this. We can’t back you blindly without evidence.”

He went on: “He’s been a friend of mine for 20 years. But friendship doesn’t mean that you’re blind. Friendship means that you will listen to somebody, give them their opportunity and if they don’t come forward with the proof then it’s time to move on.”

03:24 PM

'The truth will prevail' – Trump supporters holding out for victory still

 Donald Trump has so far refused to concede the election and is sticking to his unsubstantiated claim that the election is being "stolen". The Telegraph spoke with some of his supporters about how they see the election. Watch below.

 

03:20 PM

Cuba welcomes Biden win

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel has acknowledged Joe Biden's victory in the US presidential elections, tweeting that his government recognized "the people of the United States have chosen a new direction".

"We believe in the possibility of constructive bilateral relations respecting one another's differences," his tweet read, reflecting widespread hopes on the Communist-run island for an improvement in U.S.-Cuban relations under President-elect Biden, without naming him.

Incumbent U.S. President Donald Trump unraveled much of his predecessor Barack Obama's 2014-2016 detente with Cuba, reverting instead to a decades-old policy of seeking to choke its economy in order to force democratic change.

The Trump administration tightened restrictions on U.S. travel and remittances to Cuba and sanctioned shipments of Venezuelan oil to the island.

The administration also made it harder for Cubans to visit their family in Florida by reducing its Havana embassy to skeletal staffing and shutting down the consular section in the wake of mysterious illnesses among its diplomats.

This has meant Cubans have instead had to travel abroad to get a U.S. visa.

During the campaign, Biden assured he would promptly reverse policies on Cuba enacted by Trump that "have inflicted harm on the Cuban people and done nothing to advance democracy and human rights."

03:17 PM

Statehood for Puerto Rico?

Pedro Pierluisi of Puerto Rico’s pro-statehood New Progressive Party was projected as the winner of the US Territory's gubernatorial election in the early hours of this morning.

Puerto Ricans also voted narrowly to back statehood in a referendum held at the same time as the presidential election. Asked "Should Puerto Rico be admitted immediately into the Union as a State?", 52.34 per cent of voters said Yes and 47.66 per cent No. Turnout, however, was just 52.17 per cent.

While Puerto Ricans are US citizens, the territory is not represented in Congress and its residents cannot vote in Presidential elections. The Caribbean island came under US control after the Spanish-American of 1898.

There is varying support within the Democratic Party for granting the island and Washington DC, which does vote in presidential elections but has no representation in Congress, statehood. Joe Biden has been ambiguous on his stance towards Puerto Rico but has previously backed DC statehood.

Both places are heavily Democrat-backing and would likely guarantee the Democrats an extra four seats in the Senate as well as additional members of the House of Representatives.

Without control of the Senate, however, it would be next to impossible to press ahead with any statehood plans.

03:01 PM

Boris Johnson congratulates Joe Biden

Boris Johnson has sent a video message to the new President-elect

 

02:58 PM

How the election unfolded

It took four long days of counting before the election was called for Joe Biden. Watch the below video for the story of a wild week condensed to three minutes.

 

02:50 PM

Lady Liberty restored

Der Spiegel, the German magazine, has updated its famously gruesome 2017 front page depicting Donald Trump decapitating the Statue of Liberty.

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02:42 PM

'The American people are more conservative than they are progressive'

Senator Mitt Romney, an outspoken critic of Donald Trump from within the Republican Party, has said that Democrats and Republicans can work together on key issues but warned that they won't see "eye-to-eye" on all things and warned Joe Biden against attempting to be overly progressive.

Speaking to CNN, Mr Romney, a senator for Utah, claimed that the success of Republicans in House and Senate races meant that " Republicans overall did better than Democrats overall in this elections" and claimed that "the American people are more conservative than they are progressive".

"Any argument to the contrary I think is going to be met with a lot of resistance from the American people and members of Congress" he added.

02:17 PM

The return of dogs to the White House

It might not have been what won Joe Biden the election, but January will mark the return of dogs to the White House.

When Joe Biden moves into the most famous house in the world, he will bring with him Major and Champ, two German Shepherds. 

At a rally in January 2019, Donald Trump mocked the idea of having a dog in the White House. Mr Biden, however, made it a part of his social media campaign.

Major and Champ will be the first canine residents of the 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue since Barack Obama moved out with Bo, his Portuguese Water Dog. Bo was chosen because of his hypoallergenic fur, as Malia Obama was allergic. 

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02:00 PM

Democrats mustn't allow Republicans to 'create a wedge between Democrats' says Ilhan Omar

Earlier this afternoon we wrote about comments from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez warning Joe Biden against ignoring the party's Left wing.

Ilhan Omar, another member of "The Squad" of Left-wing democrats has just told CNN that it was Kamala Harris' backing of progressive policies that won the election.

She told John King: “Last night we not only celebrated a historic win of the first black woman, South Asian daughter of immigrants who will become our next vice president, but we also celebrated the message he sent in putting her on the ticket as a co-sponsor of the Green New Deal and Medicare for all. Her being on that ticket did not cost us the election it actually won us the election."

Ms Omar, a representative for Minnesota who came to the United States as a refugee from Somalia, also warned fellow Democrats not to let the Republicans divide them.

Asked about warnings from another Democrat member of Congress to "never use the word socialist again", Ms Omar accused her colleagues of saying "we stand with you when we think you are going to be helpful and we are going to condemn you when there is a challenge". She warned that “the message shouldn’t be to attack one another and to allow the Republicans, who benefit when we are a divided house, to have the last word”.

12:50 PM

Donald Trump's niece celebrates

One member of the Trump family is happy, writes David Millward.

Donald Trump's niece, Mary, is pretty chipper at the result, at least judging by her twitter feed.

Wearing a Biden-Harris baseball cap and raising a glass of champagne, her joy seems unconfined.

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However, writing in The Observer, she expects that Uncle Don will turn the transition into a nightmare, wreaking havoc wherever he can.

"This is what Donald's going to do: he's not going to concede, although who cares. What's worse is he's not going to engage in the normal activities that guarantee a peaceful transition," she wrote in the article.

"All he's got now is breaking stuff, and he's going to do that with a vengeance. I've always known how cruel he can be."

12:29 PM

What next for the Trump children?

Donald Trump, perhaps more than any other modern president, made his family a key part of his government and his personal brand.

Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner have been key adviser with official positions in the White House, while Donald Trump Jr has become a hugely influential figure among American conservatives and a best-selling author.

What will they do next? The United States has had many political dynasties, so will there soon be another Trump in the White House? Nick Allen looks at what next for the Trump family.

12:06 PM

AOC warns against centrism: 'I’d be bummed, because we’re going to lose'

AOC wearing a "medicare for all" face mask while campaigning - Kathy Willens/AP
AOC wearing a "medicare for all" face mask while campaigning - Kathy Willens/AP

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading light on the Left of the Democratic Party has warned Joe Biden that they will lose the next election if he takes a centrist approach to governing and fails to appoint figures from the party's Left.

AOC, as the representative from New York is known, is part of "The Squad", a group Left-wing women who unseated long-standing Democrat incumbents in the 2018 mid-term election. Since then, she has regularly worked against Democratic Party institutions to unseat incumbents and select fellow progressives. 

Donald Trump used the spectre of Ms Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders, both self-declared democratic socialists, to warn during the campaign that Mr Biden would be beholden to "radical socialists".

In a lengthy interview with The New York Times, Ms Ocasio-Cortez was asked what would happen if Mr Biden's White House was "hostile" towards her and her fellow Left-wingers and failed to give them senior positions. "Well, I’d be bummed, because we’re going to lose. And that’s just what it is", she said.

She claimed that heavy Democrat losses in the 2010 mid-terms, just two years after Barack Obama's sweeping 2008 victory, were a result of "icing out" the Left of the party.

A Republican-held Senate, which appears likely, would make it difficult for Mr Biden to put forward progressive names such as Elizabeth Warren for key cabinet posts.

Ms Ocasio-Cortez, who is highly visible on social media, also laid the blame for several Democrat representatives losing their seats on their failure to embrace social media by not spending enough on Facebook or failing organise and campaign using the website.

11:37 AM

How Fox News turned on Donald Trump

For nearly five years, Fox News was the go-to cable news network for Republicans and for Donald Trump. The President was a regular viewer of Fox & Friends and frequently called into the show.

This year, however, the relationship started to sour, culminating in an extraordinary split between the President and Fox News when it became the first network to call Arizona for Joe Biden.

Nick Allen writes from Delaware on how the President's favourite channel finally turned on him and why it was one of the biggest surprises of election night. Read it here.

You can watch the moment Fox News called the election for Mr Biden below.

 

11:13 AM

How the world received the news

Two men looking at newspapers clipped to wire at a newsstand - Wakil Kohsar/AFP
Two men looking at newspapers clipped to wire at a newsstand - Wakil Kohsar/AFP

American presidential elections are always front-page news across the world, but none more so than this one. And that's even with it taking four days to declare a winner.

Click here to see a selection front pages and images of the reaction from around the world including the United States and the UK. 

10:56 AM

What will Donald Trump do now?

Run again in 2024? Launch Trump TV? Leave the country?  What will President Trump do once he leaves office? 

Ben Riley-Smith explores the options available to the soon-to-be-former President as he contemplates life beyond the White House.

10:43 AM

On the ground when the result was called

Ben Riley-Smith, Josie Ensor and Rozina Sabur were on the ground in the United States yesterday as the result was called in Joe Biden's favour. Watch below to see the reaction of those on the streets.

 

10:12 AM

Trump poses for bridal pictures

Donald Trump was playing golf in Virginia yesterday when the election was declared by broadcasters for Joe Biden.  Video footage has now emerged of Mr Trump posing for pictures at the golf club with a bridal party. Watch below.

 

10:10 AM

Silence from Moscow reflects frosty relations

Vladimir Putin has yet to congratulate Joe Biden as messages of support pour in from other world leaders, an indicator of tough times ahead for already strained relations between Moscow and Washington, reports Theo Merz in Moscow

In what is likely to be read as a deliberate snub, the Kremlin put out a statement from Mr Putin on Sunday morning congratulating a well-known Russian screen actor on his 60th birthday, but was silent on the US election results.

Russia interfered in the 2016 election to boost Donald Trump’s campaign, according to US officials, a charge the Kremlin denies.

While Moscow has expressed disappointment that little has improved in relations under the Trump administration – sanctions remain in place and Washington has pulled out of cold war-era arms deals - the election of Mr Biden signals a tougher stance on Russia. 

Unlike Mr Trump, the former vice president has described Russia as an “opponent” and repeatedly criticised Moscow over its foreign policy.

Mr Biden said he told the Russian president in 2011 that “I don’t think you have a soul”, a reference to George W. Bush’s claim that he had looked into Mr Putin’s eyes and “got a sense of his soul”.

The Kremlin's slow response to Mr Biden’s victory reflects a dramatic worsening in ties since Mr Putin came to power in 2000. The Russian president was the first world leader to offer support to Mr Bush after the terror attacks of September 11. 

Alexei Navalny, the Russian opposition leader who was poisoned this summer in what he says was an attack ordered by the Kremlin, congratulated Mr Biden and Kamala Harris on their win. 

He praised America for “free and fair” elections, adding: “This is a privilege which is not available to all countries. Looking forward to the new level of cooperation between Russia and the US.”

09:59 AM

Philadelphia parties after delivering Biden to the White House

A crowd celebrates in the streets - Chris McGrath/Getty Images North America
A crowd celebrates in the streets - Chris McGrath/Getty Images North America

Pennsylvania ended up being the crucial state in this election. Having shocked Democrats in 2016 by voting for Donald Trump, the Keystone State returned to the blue column yesterday. 

Key to that result was the vote in Philadelphia, the state's largest city, which voted 81 per cent for Joe Biden. Josie Ensor was in Philly yesterday as Pennsylvania was called for the former Vice President and filed this report on how locals were celebrating what they called the end of "four years of hell".

09:25 AM

The factions in the future Biden White House

Joe Biden will already be hard at work putting together his transition team. The likely Republican majority in the Senate will place some limits on who he can appoint because the Senate must approve most appointments.

Nevertheless, there is likely to be a fierce battle among the various political factions in the Democratic Party. Freddy Gray, The Spectator's US Editor explains what those various factions are, who is in them and what is at stake in this piece.

09:04 AM

Middle East reaction

Donald Trump shook up the United States' approach to the Middle East, stoking tensions with Iran while achieving significant diplomatic breakthroughs in getting several Arab countries to sign peace deals with Israel.

Joe Biden is likely to bring a marked change to US policy in the region.  This is how some of the region's political leaders have reacted to the news.


Israel: “Congratulations @JoeBiden and @KamalaHarris. Joe, we’ve had a long & warm personal relationship for nearly 40 years, and I know you as a great friend of Israel. I look forward to working with both of you to further strengthen the special alliance between the U.S. and Israel,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on his Twitter account on Sunday. Netanyahu’s account still features a picture of the Prime Minister alongside Donald Trump as the cover photo.

Egypt: “The President stressed the aspiration for cooperation and joint action to strengthen the strategic bilateral relations between Egypt and the United States, in the interest of the two friendly countries and peoples,” said a statement from a presidential spokesman.

Iran: Iran’s vice-president said on Saturday he hoped for a change in “destructive US policies”.

United Arab Emirates: "Congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on winning the US elections. Our sincere wishes for further development and prosperity for the American people. The UAE and USA are friends and allies with a strong historic partnership that we look forward to strengthening together,” said Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan in a tweet on Saturday.

Lebanon: Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun congratulated Biden on Saturday, saying he hoped "the balance in Lebanese-American relations will return during his term.”

08:57 AM

'The most powerful Vice President since Dick Cheney'

Bush and Cheney in the back of the Presidential limousine - Gado/Smith Collection
Bush and Cheney in the back of the Presidential limousine - Gado/Smith Collection

Joe Biden is the oldest person ever elected to the US presidency. He will be  78 years and 61 days old on Inauguration Day. That has many observers believing that he will not run for reelection in 2024. 

If he doesn't run, Kamala Harris would be in pole position to become the Democrats' candidate. Rozina Sabur takes at a look at how Ms Harris is expected to reshape the role of Vice President and why she will be the most powerful politician in the role since Dick Cheney under George W Bush.

08:43 AM

How to make a concession speech

As mentioned below, there's little indication so far that President Trump intends to make a concession speech. 

The tradition has a long history, however, going back over a century. Our video team has put together this four-point guide on how it's done.

 

08:36 AM

Most votes for a candidate ever

Donald Trump has pointed out on Twitter that, with over 70 million votes so far, he has gained more votes than any sitting US president in history. This is true. He's also on course to beat his own 2016 total by over 10 million. 

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Joe Biden, however, has racked up more votes than any candidate ever.

With California, the most populous state, reporting just 77 per cent of its votes so far and New York 84 per cent, he could become the first person to breach the 80-million-vote mark in a presidential election.

08:26 AM

What next for the Special Relationship?

The transition from Donald Trump to Joe Biden will be a dramatic one when it comes to the United States' foreign policy. From climate change to Iran to Nato, Mr Biden takes very different views from the current president.

In Downing Street, officials will have been working hard to figure out what Mr Biden means for the trans-Atlantic relationship.

How will the so-called special relationship fare over the next four years? Nick Allen takes a look at the key issues here.

08:16 AM

Jared Kushner 'has approached' Donald Trump about conceding election

CNN in the United States reports that Jared Kushner, Donald Trump's son-in-law, "has approached the President about conceding the election".

Mr Kushner, the husband of Ivanka Trump and a senior adviser to the President, has a close relationship with Mr Trump.

So far, the President has shown no indication that he is willing to concede the election and was still tweeting yesterday that he had won.

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A concession from the losing candidate is not legally necessary in the United States but has been traditional since 1896.

You can read about what might happen if Mr Trump refuses to concede here.

08:05 AM

Celebrations in America's cities

Joe Biden's victory relied heavily on votes from America's urban areas. Those cities celebrated his victory wildly on Saturday evening.

A crowd of mostly young women stand with their fists raised in front of a raised bridge in Chicago - Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune
A crowd of mostly young women stand with their fists raised in front of a raised bridge in Chicago - Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune
A crown including a woman waving an LGBT flag celebrate - Peter Foley/Shutterstock EPA-EFE
A crown including a woman waving an LGBT flag celebrate - Peter Foley/Shutterstock EPA-EFE
A man hangs out of a car window holding a sign reading "we grabbed him by the ballot" - Eugene Garcia/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock
A man hangs out of a car window holding a sign reading "we grabbed him by the ballot" - Eugene Garcia/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

 

07:43 AM

All eyes on Georgia

While Mr Biden is on course for a considerable margin of victory in the electoral college, that is not the case in Congress.

Down ballot candidates, as those running for lesser offices are known, have under-performed compared to Mr Biden. The Republicans have, so far, made a net gain of 5 seats in the House of Representatives, although they won't regain control of the lower chamber.

In the Senate, which is currently Republican controlled, the Democrats have struggled to make the gains necessary to flip the chamber. Four seats remain undecided, two in Georgia and one in Alaska and North Carolina each.

With no candidate gaining more than 50 per cent of the vote in either race, both Georgia elections will go to a run-off vote in early January 5.

The Alaska and North Carolina seats are expected to be won by Republican candidates, meaning that the Senate will be poised at 48-48 heading into January.

If the Democrats were to win both Georgia seats and the Senate was tied 50-50, then the Vice President, Kamala Harris, would hold the tie-breaking vote. 

Rozina Sabur reports from Atlanta, Georgia, on what promises to be a crucial pair of races.

07:30 AM

The 44 previous presidents

Joe Biden will become the 46th President of the United States when he is inaugurated on January 20. 

43 other men have held the position, with Grover Cleveland both the 22nd and 24th president, having been the only candidate to serve non-consecutive terms.

If you want to refresh your history, or perhaps just test your knowledge of lesser known presidents, have a read of the list of the previous 44 men to occupy the White House.

07:07 AM

Celebrations in Kamala's Indian grandfather's hometown

Arulmozhi Sudhakar, second right, a village councilor, gives a thumbs-up as she poses with her family and friends - Aijaz Rahi/AP
Arulmozhi Sudhakar, second right, a village councilor, gives a thumbs-up as she poses with her family and friends - Aijaz Rahi/AP

Waking up to the news of Kamala Harris' election as Joe Biden's running mate, overjoyed people in her Indian grandfather's hometown set off firecrackers, carrying her placards and offering prayers.

Groups gathered at street corners of the tiny village of Thulasendrapuram - population 350 - reading newspapers and chatting about the Democrats' victory before moving to the temple.

Preparing to celebrate in the ancestral house of the Vandayar family in Painganadu a neighbouring village of Thulasendrapuram, south of Chennai - Aijaz Rahi/AP
Preparing to celebrate in the ancestral house of the Vandayar family in Painganadu a neighbouring village of Thulasendrapuram, south of Chennai - Aijaz Rahi/AP

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A woman wrote in colour powder outside her home: "Congratulations Kamala Harris. Pride of our village. Vanakkam (Greetings) America."

Most of them had gone to sleep by the time Mr Biden clinched the winning threshold of 270 Electoral College votes, making Ms Harris the first woman and the first person of South Asian descent to be elected vice president.

"For two or three days we kept our fingers crossed while the result was delayed," said resident Kalidas Vamdayar.

"Now it's a joyful moment for us. We are enjoying it. We will celebrate with firecrackers, distributing Indian sweets to people and praying in the temple. We will request her to come here. She would have heard our voice and she may come." - Associated Press

06:53 AM

Israel's PM sends messages to both new and old presidents

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday congratulated US president-elect Joe Biden after his election win saying he looked forward to working together with the new administration and strengthening the two countries' alliance.

Minutes after he posted a message on social media for Mr Biden and Kamala Harris, Mr Netanyahu tweeted a message for Donald Trump from his Twitter account - which still has a main photo of the Israeli PM with Mr Trump.

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"Congratulations Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. Joe, we've had a long and warm personal relationship for nearly 40 years, and I know you as a great friend of Israel. I look forward to working with both of you to further strengthen the special alliance between the US and Israel," Mr Netanyahu said.

He followed that up with: "Thank you @realDonaldTrump for the friendship you have shown the state of Israel and me personally, for recognising Jerusalem and the Golan, for standing up to Iran, for the historic peace accords and for bringing the American-Israeli alliance to unprecedented heights."

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Mr Netanyahu's message came hours after many other world leaders - and some Israeli ministers - had congratulated Democrat Mr Biden.

Reuters reports that Mr Netanyahu's particularly close ties with Mr Trump followed an acrimonious relationship with his predecessor Barack Obama, which some critics said "alienated Democrats and compromised US bipartisan support for Israel".

"Friction between Netanyahu and the new administration could arise given Biden's pledge to restore US involvement in the Iran nuclear deal and a likely opposition by the White House to Israeli settlement of occupied land where Palestinians seek statehood," according to Reuters.

06:37 AM

Kamala promises to be what 'Joe was to President Obama'

Kamala Harris said in her speech today that she will strive to be the vice-president that Joe Biden was to President Barack Obama: "Loyal, honest, and prepared, waking up every day thinking of you and your families. Because now is when the real work begins.

"The road ahead will not be easy, but America is ready. And so are Joe and I," she told supporters.

"We have elected a president who represents the best in us. A leader the world will respect and our children can look up to.

"A Commander in Chief who will respect our troops and keep our country safe.

"And a president for all Americans."

Read Kamala Harris' speech in full here or watch it below:

06:08 AM

EXCLUSIVE: Biden 'will not prioritise UK-US trade deal'

Joe Biden will not prioritise UK-US trade deal talks in the first 100 days of his presidency, a figure advising his campaign on foreign policy has told The Telegraph.

The Democratic president-elect has shown little interest in the negotiations and would focus his early months in office on more pressing pieces of domestic legislation, it is understood. 

Read the full exclusive story by The Telegraph's Ben Riley-SmithJoe Biden 'will not prioritise UK-US trade deal in first 100 days'

06:01 AM

'We are not enemies. We are Americans'

Fireworks after the speech - REUTERS/Mark Makela
Fireworks after the speech - REUTERS/Mark Makela

Good morning! If you're among the many people around the world who have been waking up in the middle of the night to check their phone for a US election result, fear not, we're all guilty of that.

Meanwhile, here's what happened overnight:

Democrat Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump to become the 46th president of the United States and offered himself to the nation as a leader who "seeks not to divide, but to unify" a country gripped by a historic pandemic and economic and social turmoil.

Mr Biden said in a prime-time victory speech not far from his Delaware home this morning (UK time): "I sought this office to restore the soul of America and to make America respected around the world again and to unite us here at home."

Mr Biden crossed the winning threshold of 270 Electoral College votes with a win in Pennsylvania. His victory came after more than three days of uncertainty as election officials sorted through a surge of mail-in votes that delayed processing.

Mr Trump refused to concede, threatening further legal action on ballot counting.

But Mr Biden used his acceptance speech as an olive branch to those who did not vote for him, telling Trump voters that he understood their disappointment but adding: "Let's give each other a chance."

"It's time to put away the harsh rhetoric, to lower the temperature, to see each other again, to listen to each other again, to make progress, we must stop treating our opponents as our enemy," he said. 

"We are not enemies. We are Americans."

READ MORE: Joe Biden addresses Americans after being voted in as the President of the United States

05:26 AM

President's voter fraud hotline descends into 'farce'

The Telegraph's Laurence Dodds is in the United States and says the Trump campaign's "voter fraud hotline is descending into farce after becoming the target of one of the President's chief enemies: TikTok".

"Republican operatives at protests and press conferences across the country, as well as Mr Trump's family, have touted the hotline as a way for supporters to  contribute evidence of vote-rigging and thereby keep him in power," Laurence said.

"But the venture has become what ABC News described as a 'nightmare' due to prank callers, many of whom are filming themselves and posting the videos on TikTok and Twitter."

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"Users gravely told hotline workers that they had spotted suspicious behaviour by an 'obese turtle', the McDonald's cartoon mascot the Hamburglar, and 'the ghost of my mother's momma's sons aunt's cousin's brother-in-law's cat'," Laurence said.

He explains that TikTok has often skirmished with Mr Trump in the past.

"Its users have hijacked pro-Trump hashtags and attempted to embarrass him by signing up en mass to one of his rallies," Laurence said.

"Mr Trump later waged regulatory war on the Chinese-owned app, eventually strong-arming it into a partnership with American companies.

"One phone staffer, responding to a caller who gave her name as Seymour Butts, finally snapped: 'Have a good night. Grow up, please.'"

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05:14 AM

'Donald Trump's disgraceful behaviour risks doing lasting damage'

 

"This disgraceful performance by the US president is deeply troubling," writes John Bolton in The Telegraph about Donald Trump.

"Any candidate is entitled to express disappointment when he or she loses, complain that life is unfair, and trigger all legitimately available election-law remedies to seek redress for alleged improprieties.

"Of course, raising claims, however permissible, is not the same as proving them, or showing that even validated claims have had an actual, let alone dispositive, effect on the election itself.

"Responsible politicians know that, ultimately, they will pay a price if they go too far, even rhetorically.

"Apparently, no one ever explained this to Trump, or if they did, he didn’t pay any more attention to it than he usually pays to good advice."

Read John Bolton's comment piece here.

05:04 AM

Big names show their support

Celebrities and politicians have taken to social media after listening to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris address their fellow Americans.

Former Tory international development secretary Rory Stewart was full of praise for Mr Biden's speech, calling it "profoundly needed".

"This is a beautiful speech - fluent, natural and focused on healing not division - deeply reassuring and profoundly needed. Thank you Joe Biden."

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His comments were echoed by Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge, who said the speech was "just what we need".

"Plenty of optimism, decency and hope," she said.

American actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus said "Madam vice president" was no longer a fictional character:

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NBA legend Magic Johnson also hailed Mr Biden's speech in a statement on Twitter, calling it "everything the American people needed to hear at this time".

Tennis champion Martina Navratilova said people "cannot overstate" the importance of Ms Harris' election.

She said: "Given that black women are on the bottom of the economic and social rung in this country, Kamala Harris becoming the second most powerful person here in the US and perhaps the world - as a woman of colour - this is huuuuuge!!! We cannot overstate this moment!!!!!"

04:23 AM

Trump supporters warn 'this isn't over'

Chanting "this isn't over" and "stop the steal", supporters of Donald Trump protested at state capitols across the country on Saturday, refusing to accept defeat and echoing Mr Trump's unsubstantiated allegations that the Democrats won by fraud.

From Atlanta and Tallahassee to Austin, Bismarck, Boise and Phoenix, crowds ranging in size from a few dozen to a few thousand - some of them openly carrying guns - decried the news of Joe Biden's victory after more than three days of vote-counting put the Democrat over the top.

Supporters of Donald Trump gather at a Stop the Steal protest in Phoenix, Arizona - Cheney Orr/Bloomberg
Supporters of Donald Trump gather at a Stop the Steal protest in Phoenix, Arizona - Cheney Orr/Bloomberg

Skirmishes broke out in some cities.

No immediate violence was reported, though at one point, police moved to separate Trump opponents from supporters.

For his part, current president Donald Trump remained defiant on social media.

Twitter flagged his post, saying the claim about election fraud was disputed.

"The observers were not allowed into the counting rooms," Mr Trump complained.

"I won the election, got 71,000 legal votes.

"Bad things happened which our advisers were not allowed to see. Never happened before. Millions of mail-in ballots were sent to people who never asked for them."

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READ MORE: Donald Trump shows no sign of conceding as Joe Biden declared winner

03:21 AM

More from the Delaware crowd...

The Telegraph's Washington Editor Nick Allen reports from outside the Chase Centre in Delaware:

The mood among Mr Biden’s supporters was celebratory but restrained. Social distancing was mostly maintained. I didn’t see anyone without a mask.

One man wandered around shouting “Science!”

Quite a few people in Wilmington seem to know the Biden family in some way. A woman in the crowd, who taught drama to Mr Biden’s granddaughters, told me: “I’m just glad we don’t have to feel embarrassed for America anymore. Joe has class and that’s what I want America to have, compassion and class.”

One man said Mr Biden had been to his church, and wrote a letter to his wife congratulating her on her work at a local hospital. He said: “Joe Biden is diametrically opposite to the current resident of the White House. I’m amazed that so many people didn’t see that. I think it’s going to be very hard for him to unify.”

02:37 AM

Joe Biden's speech in full

"I sought this office to restore the soul of America," announced Joe Biden in his first official speech.

"To rebuild the backbone of the nation — the middle class. 

"To make America respected around the world again and to unite us here at home.

"It is the honour of my lifetime that so many millions of Americans have voted for this vision. And now the work of making this vision real is the task of our time." 

READ FOR YOURSELF: Joe Biden's first speech to his fellow Americans as new president-elect

Joe Bden - REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Joe Bden - REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

02:15 AM

'This is a country of possibilities'

 

Vice president-elect Kamala Harris said voters had "ushered in a new day for America".

In her first official address to the nation since she and Joe Biden were declared the winners of the presidential election, Ms Harris said voters chose hope, unity, decency, science and truth in voting for her and Mr Biden over President Donald Trump.

Ms Harris, the first woman to be elected vice president, wore a white pantsuit in tribute to women's suffrage.

She paid tribute to black women who "so often prove they are the backbone of our democracy".

Ms Harris, the daughter of Jamaican and Indian immigrants, noted that her ascension to the role comes 100 years after the 19th Amendment was ratified and 55 years after the signing of the Voting Rights Act, which expanded who could participate in American democracy.

She praised Mr Biden for having "the audacity to break one of the most substantial barriers that exist in our country" by selecting a woman as his running mate.

"While I may be the first woman in this office, I won't be the last," she said to cheers from the crowd gathered in socially distanced cars.

"Because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities."

The remarks were some of the most direct she has delivered about her history-making role as Mr Biden's running mate.

02:04 AM

The new presidential team...

President-elect Joe Biden joins vice president-elect Kamala Harris on stage - REUTERS/Jim Bourg
President-elect Joe Biden joins vice president-elect Kamala Harris on stage - REUTERS/Jim Bourg

01:55 AM

Tackling the coronavirus pandemic

Mr Biden said his first act as president-elect would be to name scientific advisers and experts to lead the country's coronavirus response.

01:51 AM

A president for all Americans

"Proud Democrat" Joe Biden said he would govern for all Americans - not just those who voted for him.

Mr Biden has appealed to Trump voters in a call for unity in the country: "Let's give each other a chance."

He is pledging to be a president "who seeks not to divide, but to unify".

01:44 AM

Next president of the United States makes first official speech

President-elect Joe Biden takes the stage at the Chase Centre to address the nation - Drew Angerer/Getty Images
President-elect Joe Biden takes the stage at the Chase Centre to address the nation - Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Joe Biden is making his first official speech since clinching the 2020 US election.

The president-elect is speaking on stage in Wilmington, Delaware, in front of his excited supporters. 

"Folks, the people of this nation have spoken," he said.

"They've delivered us a clear victory, a convincing victory, a victory for you the people.

"We've won with the most votes ever cast in a presidential ticket in history."

01:30 AM

'A better future'

Kamala Harris has opened the victory speech for president-elect Joe Biden.

"We, the people, have the power to build a better future," Ms Harris said.

Vice president-elect Kamala Harris addresses the nation from the Chase Centre in Wilmington, Delaware - Win McNamee/Getty Images
Vice president-elect Kamala Harris addresses the nation from the Chase Centre in Wilmington, Delaware - Win McNamee/Getty Images

She said voters ushered in a "new day for America".

Ms Harris commenced the proceedings by reflecting on civil rights leader John Lewis.

She said: "Congressman John Lewis, before his passing, wrote 'Democracy is not a state. It is an act'. And what he meant, was that America's democracy is not guaranteed.

"It is only as strong as our willingness to fight for it. To guard it and never take it for granted."

01:29 AM

New team addresses the nation now

Vice president-elect Kamala Harris is addressing the nation. Watch it live in the video above.

01:28 AM

'You just lost your job'

The Telegraph's US Editor Ben Riley-Smith is in Washington:

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01:25 AM

Biden’s convoy arrives at the Chase Centre

The Telegraph's Nick Allen is at the Chase Centre in Wilmington, Delaware.

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Nick reports:

Mr Biden’s convoy has just arrived at the Chase Centre, where he’ll be delivering his victory speech from a stage in the car park.

One of his granddaughters - I think it was Finnegan Biden - waved through the window of an SUV to people on the other side of a fence.

The convoy went past a giant US flag that has been hung from two cranes.

There a lively atmosphere among Mr Biden’s supporters. A group of kids are running around the car park chanting "Go Joe Biden".

01:00 AM

Joe Biden about to address the nation

Watch our live coverage of president-elect Joe Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris at the top of this blog as they address the nation - and the world - soon

12:33 AM

World leaders respond to White House change

World leaders swiftly congratulated president-elect Joe Biden on his victory on Saturday, cheering it as an opportunity to fortify global democracy and celebrating the significance of Americans having their first woman vice-president.

"The Americans have chosen their President. Congratulations Joe Biden and Kamala Harris! We have a lot to do to overcome today's challenges. Let's work together!" tweeted French President Emmanuel Macron.

Other leaders who sent congratulations included German Chancellor Angela Merkel, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

The president of Ukraine, whose country was central to Mr Trump's impeachment and an attempt by the Trump campaign to paint Mr Biden and his family as corrupt, offered speedy congratulations.

Most Western allies quickly welcomed a fresh start with a new administration in Washington.

"We're looking forward to working with the next US government," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tweeted.

"We want to work in our cooperation for a new trans-Atlantic beginning, a New Deal."

12:23 AM

'Time for America to unite and heal'

Joe Biden clinched the White House over Donald Trump with a victory in Pennsylvania, the state where he was born.

Later he added Nevada to his column.

In a statement, Mr Biden said he was honoured that America had chosen him "to lead our great country", adding that it is time for the US to unite and heal.

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"With the campaign over, it's time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation," he said.

"It's time for America to unite and to heal. We are the United States of America, and there's nothing we can't do if we do it together."

READ MORE: Joe Biden wins US presidential election

11:34 PM

Today ... finally!

Good morning, everyone.

Well, it finally happened - the winner of the US presidential election was declared on Saturday. And it wasn't Donald Trump.

Joe Biden has confined Mr Trump to only a single term, and brought to a close four tumultuous years in the White House.

Supporters of Joe Biden dance outside the security fence of a planned election celebration as they await his remarks in Wilmington, Delaware - REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Supporters of Joe Biden dance outside the security fence of a planned election celebration as they await his remarks in Wilmington, Delaware - REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

The Democratic candidate was confirmed as America's 46th president when media outlets concluded he had won the state of Pennsylvania, and therefore the election.

Mr Biden's running mate, Kamala Harris, became the first woman of colour to be elected vice-president in the country's history.

Within minutes of the news breaking, scenes of celebration were seen on streets across the US, with crowds cheering, honking car horns and waving the Stars and Stripes.

It hasn't gone down well with Mr Trump, who was playing golf when the declaration was made. He has refused to concede, instead issuing a statement vowing to fight on through the courts.

READ MORE: