President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden were neck and neck at 9:45 a.m. on Wednesday morning as officials continued to count votes in eight states that could decide the outcome of the 2020 election.
The electoral vote tallies by Decision Desk HQ and The Associated Press showed Biden with a slight lead on Trump 227-213 and 238-213 respectively. Both services had not yet declared winners in eight states: Nevada, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia, Maine, and Alaska. The Associated Press called the race in Arizona for Biden at 3:14 a.m., but Decision Desk has not made the call.
Arizona’s governor said late Tuesday that it’s too early to call the state for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden after Fox News projected a win for Biden.
Trump was in the lead in four states: Georgia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Alaska. Biden recaptured the lead in Wisconsin and Michigan with a surge of ballots which were counted in the early morning. The former vice president was also in the lead in Arizona and Nevada.
Two large counties in Georgia had problems counting ballots on Tuesday. A burst pipe in Fulton County delayed counting by two hours. Officials said they would continue tabulating ballots on Wednesday and Thursday.
In a brief speech to supporters, Biden urged patience as votes continued to be counted. Trump asserted a big victory and suggested that malfeasance may be afoot.
“Your patience is commendable. We knew this was going to go long, but who knew we’re going to go into tomorrow morning, maybe even longer. But look, we feel good about where we are. We really do. I’m here to tell you tonight, we believe we’re on track to win this election,” Biden, 77, said from Wilmington, Delaware, with his wife standing by his side.
“Millions and millions of Americans voted for us,” Trump said. “A very sad group of people is trying to disenfranchise that group of people and we won’t stand for it, we won’t stand for it.”
“We were getting ready for a big celebration. We were winning everything and all of a sudden it was just called off,” the president added.
In Pennsylvania, Trump held a 10.1 point lead with 64 percent of the votes counted. The state will continue counting mailed ballots it receives for up to three days after the election. Before Election Day, Trump repeatedly criticized the Supreme Court for refusing to block the mail deadline extension and suggested that the resulting delays would increase the likelihood of fraud.
In North Carolina, Trump held a 1.4 percent lead with 94 percent of the votes counted. The state will continue counting postmarked mail ballots it receives as late as Nov. 12.
There is no deadline extension in place in Arizona, which Biden led by 3.4 points with 84 percent of the votes counted. The opposite is true in Nevada, which will accept mailed ballots until Nov. 10. Biden led the state by 0.6 points with 67 percent of the votes counted.
Results may come sooner from Michigan and Wisconsin, neither of which will count mailed ballots arriving after Election Day. Trump was down by 0.7 points in Wisconsin with 95 percent of the votes counted. The president’s 8 point lead in Michigan evaporated in a matter of minutes in the early morning on Wednesday after more than 120,000 votes were reported for Biden, who is now in the lead by 0.3 points with 94 percent of the votes counted.