Democrat Joe Biden’s chances of defeating President Trump improved in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, but vote-counting continued in several key states that would decide the presidency.
Biden’s prospects looked strong in Michigan and Wisconsin, with him in the lead. The Associated Press has called Arizona for Biden. If he wins those three and holds Nevada — where the margin is very close — he will have 270 Electoral College votes and be the next president.
If Trump wins Nevada, Biden would need to win either Pennsylvania or Georgia in its place to reach 270. Trump would have to win both Pennsylvania and Georgia in addition to Nevada to get above 270.
A Biden win would most likely come sooner than a Trump win, since Trump’s chances would hinge on Pennsylvania and Biden can win the presidency without it at this point.
The political world was focused on these states on Wednesday, studying the remaining votes left to come in. There had been concern among Democrats after Trump won Ohio by nearly the same margin as four years ago, but the Rust Belt trio of states that decided the last election were incredibly close last time, and Biden is outperforming Hillary Clinton’s numbers in all three states.
Democrats felt good about Biden’s ability to hold his lead in Michigan and Wisconsin — since outstanding votes were expected to go heavily Democrat — and Nevada results also looked likely to keep that state in Biden’s column. But Nevada’s results might not be finalized until Thursday morning, according to veteran state reporter Jon Ralston, editor of the Nevada Independent.
Meanwhile, Trump’s baseless claims of victory early Wednesday morning were largely ignored after being met with criticism and reproach from even some of his Republican allies.
“He has undercut his own credibility,” said former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who advised Trump during the campaign. “So I think it’s a bad strategic decision, it’s a bad political decision and it’s not the kind of decision you would expect someone to make tonight who holds the position he holds.”