Biden Wins 2020 Presidential Election


According to CBS News, Biden broke the record for the most popular votes cast for a U.S. presidential candidate. (Courtesy of Twitter)

The Democratic candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden, won the 2020 presidential election against incumbent President Donald Trump. Biden is projected to be the 46th president of the United States and his running mate, Kamala Harris, will be the first woman and biracial woman of color to be the vice president of the United States. 

The projection was announced on Saturday, Nov. 7, four days after Election Day on Nov. 3. After the battleground state of Pennsylvania was called for Biden, he crossed the threshold of 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency. Biden has 279 electoral votes and Trump has 214, as of Nov. 7, according to CNN

“Overall, we are incredibly relieved and excited about the outcome of the election,” said Claire McDonnell, FCRH ’21, president of the Fordham College Democrats. “Biden’s win is the culmination of a lot of hard work of people all across the country who have been working on mobilizing voters and pushing for change. We have plenty of work to do and are excited about the progress ahead under a Biden presidency.” 

Caroline Chapin, FCRH ’23, treasurer of the Fordham College Democrats, said Biden and Harris’ win is historic, hard-fought and long awaited. 

“I’m incredibly happy that the American people recognized the need for a new POTUS; one who leads with love and dignity for all Americans,” Chapin said. “Joe Biden is far from perfect, but this is a huge win. Harris’ achievement as the first woman (and woman of color, at that) to serve as vice president of our country is a beautiful thing.” 

Chapin said she hopes Biden’s presidency consists of immigration reform, protection of reproductive rights, prison reform, strong efforts against climate change and greater access to affordable healthcare and education, among other things. 

“It’s unrealistic to think all of these issues can be completely resolved by one man and it’ll likely be years before we see this kind of progress, but I have hope — the future of this country is brighter than it has been in four years,” she said. 

Timothy Kyle, FCRH ’21, president of the Fordham College Republicans, said the executive board of the Fordham College Republicans wishes President-elect Biden the very best in governing the nation. 

“We hope for a peaceful and productive presidency that can solve some of the bipartisan issues we face as a country, because when the president succeeds, the United States succeeds,” said Kyle. “Biden was elected on a platform of re-unifying the American people; we can only hope that is what he does.” 

According to CBS News, Biden broke the record for the most popular votes cast for a U.S. presidential candidate, even surpassing former President Barack Obama’s record from the 2008 presidential election.

As of Nov. 7, Biden has 74,523,622 votes, or 50.5% of votes. Trump has 70,356,852 votes, or 47.7% of votes, according to the New York Times

Monika McDermott, Ph.D., a political science professor at Fordham, said the close nature of this election is reflective of how divided the United States is as a country. 

“We had record high turnout and a relatively even split,” she said. “We need to find some way to feel out a little common ground.” 

Fordham political science professor Robert Hume, Ph.D., reiterated McDermott’s point, adding that Americans will have to learn how to work together because these divisions are not going away.

Over the past four days, Americans waited for votes to be counted in various states across the country. McDermott said the speed of this election is nothing unusual and that it always takes states time to tally absentee ballots. 

“People are merely shocked that it’s taking so long because there are so many and because this year they’re determinative,” she said. 

Hume said the margin of victory is usually so large that it does not make a difference what the last batches of ballots look like. 

“The reason the process seems slower is that the election is so close, and we needed to count more votes before we could be confident of the results,” he said. 

Certain states, such as Georgia and Pennsylvania, have been in the spotlight for this election as Democrats tried to flip them in their favor. 

Chapin said she was pleasantly surprised that Georgia leaned blue, since they have not gone blue since 1992.

“I was disappointed that Florida and Texas went red, but we just have to keep increasing our efforts there,” she said.

Hume said the results in Georgia are reminiscent of the presidential election in 2000 between George W. Bush and Al Gore, when there was basically a tie in the state of Florida. 

“The difference is that the vote in Georgia is not necessary for Biden to win the presidency,” he said. “But control of the Senate could be another matter. That is where the political eyes of the nation will turn next.” 

McDermott said people forget that Florida is a southern state, and as a result, has a lot of conservative voters and leans Republican. So while Obama was able to win it in both his elections, it’s not a given that any Democrat can do well there, she said. Overall, she said this election is incomparable to any other election she’s seen. 

“The sheer number of major factors that were at play — with COVID being top of the list — just make it unique,” she said. 

Earlier this week, President Trump made a speech falsely claiming to have won the election before millions of ballots had been counted, according to The New York Times. 

McDermott said she thinks everyone expected him to do that. 

“He made it clear before the election that he already considered himself the winner, and that if he didn’t win it would be because of fraud, so his declaration of victory was the natural outgrowth of that,” she said. 

As the votes continued to be counted throughout the week, Trump continued to undermine the integrity of the election, tweeting about legal and illegal votes. Many of his tweets were flagged by Twitter as having content that might be misleading or disputed, including a tweet that said, “Stop the fraud.” 

McDermott said there is no evidence of fraud coming out. The election seems to have gone smoothly, given how it could have gone, she said. 

“The behavior of some individuals on Election Day are regrettable, but those were isolated incidents and do not seem to have affected the outcome,” said McDermott.