Joe Biden was formally selected as the next president of the US on Monday after securing the required 270 Electoral College votes, despite opposition from Donald Trump and his supporters.
Electors for all 50 states and the District of Columbia gathered in their respective capitols on Monday to cast ballots in a constitutionally mandated ritual following a presidential election in the U.S. but the Electoral College vote has taken on brand-new meaning this year as President Trump and his GOP allies have made unprecedented efforts to undermine the will of the voters and overturn Biden’s November victory in Trump’s failure to concede defeat.
The process is a crucial step in cementing Mr. Biden’s victory over Mr. Trump, setting the stage for the former vice-president to be sworn in as the 46th US president next month.
The results of the November 3 vote have been certified by each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia; the Democrat won with a record 81.3 million votes, or 51.3 percent of that cast, to 74.2 million, and 46.8 percent, for the Republican president.
The future occupant of the White House is chosen by indirect universal suffrage, with each state allocating its electors — whose numbers are essentially based on population — to the candidate who won the most vote in the state. An easy victory for Biden, who had 306 of the 538 electoral votes, to 232 for Trump, who needed 270 electoral votes for re-election.
Ahead of the Electoral College vote on Monday to formalize the process, though the electors meet separately in each state, this past weekend was met with a continuous Twitter meltdown by President Donald Trump who maintains that the U.S election was a fraud.
The 45th U.S President remains the legal occupant of the White House until January 20 even though he has sustained momentum in making assertions that the November vote was the “MOST CORRUPT ELECTION IN U.S. HISTORY,” as he tweeted yet again on Sunday.
Biden in his thank-you speech in the evening of Monday to celebrate the latest confirmation of his win recapitulated once again the power of democracy.
“In America, politicians don’t take power, people grant power to them,
“The flame of democracy was lit in this nation a long time ago. And we now know that nothing — not even a pandemic or abuse of Power can extinguish that flame.” He said.
Electors are local political officials or activists, civil society figures, or friends of candidates. Most are unknown to the wider public, though national personalities occasionally take part — like Hillary Clinton, who lost to Trump in the 2016 election but voted in New York to confirm President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris in today’s electoral college votes alongside her partner President Bill Clinton.
So, Biden’s victory became even more official on Monday.
Large numbers of Republican lawmakers are on record as backing Trump’s false claims of fraud.
Some have recognized Biden’s victory once the Electoral College ratified it and have taken a stand in refuting Trump’s claims. Retiring Michigan Rep. Paul Mitchell blasted President Trump’s false complaints about fraud as “unacceptable” in a letter that he is “disaffiliating from the Republican Party.”
“It is unacceptable for political candidates to treat our election system as though we are a third-world nation and incite distrust of something so basic as the sanctity of our vote.” – Rep. Paul Mitchell
Trump appears not to give in anytime soon.
This weekend, when asked on Fox News whether he would attend Biden’s inauguration on January 20 — as demanded by protocol and centuries of tradition — the former Celebrity Apprentice TV host snapped “I don’t want to talk about that.”
If this strife remains ongoing repeatedly a more divided America is imminent and leaves Biden faced with a steep challenge of Unifying the United States of America.