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Republicans back Trump as he refuses to concede

Republicans back Trump as he refuses to concede

Trump supporters urge complaints over president-elect call

  1. Supporters of Donald Trump are urging others to bombard the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) with complaints for referring to Joe Biden as the president-elect.

    All major US TV networks have projected Biden as the winner of the 2020 election and have begun referring to him as president-elect.

    Some Republican activists have tweeted out a section of the FCC’s guidance, which states it will deal with complaints about networks who “intentionally distort the news”.

    It has long been a US tradition that TV networks begin calling a candidate the president-elect when it is deemed they have won enough votes to make it mathematically impossible for the rival candidate to catch up.

    Trump has refused to concede the election, and has launched legal challenges in a number of key states where he is narrowly trailing Biden.

  2. Turkish President Erdogan congratulates Biden

    Joe Biden (left) and Recep Tayyip Erdogan during talks in Washington in 2016
    Image caption: Joe Biden (left) and Recep Tayyip Erdogan during talks in Washington in 2016

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has congratulated Joe Biden with a victory in the US presidential election.

    In a statement (in Turkish), Mr Erdogan said bilateral relations were of "strategic" nature and should be further strengthened based on common interests.

    Mr Erdogan reiterated Ankara's "determination to work closely with the US administration" in the coming period, adding that "the strong co-operation and alliance" between the two countries would continue to contribute to world peace.

    Ties between the US and Turkey have been recently strained over several key issues, including the crisis in Syria and Ankara's military co-operation with Russia.

  3. If you're just joining us...

    Here's a quick recap of some of the latest developments ...

    A team of international election monitors from the Organization of American States (OAS) has praised the conduct of the US election – running counter to President Trump’s claims of voter fraud and corruption.

    Biden’s transition team is said to be considering legal action if it has to wait much longer for a federal transition agency to approve the result of the election. Without that approval, the team can't access funds and federal offices.

    The Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania alleging a violation of the equal voter protection clause, citing a “lack of meaningful observation and transparency” and “disparate treatment” between Republican and Democratic voters – a claim that is heavily disputed.

    Votes are still being counted in Georgia and Arizona, where Biden continues to lead, and North Carolina, where Trump is ahead.

  4. Trump tweets fraud claims again

    The president has taken to Twitter to repeat his unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud.

    Trump alleged counting abuse, but did not offer further evidence.

    Counting is still going on in several states, including Arizona and Georgia, but so far, Biden remains in the lead and analysts say it is unlikely any legal challenges or additional counting will shake his overall win.

    Trump tweets
  5. Conservative Democrat promises no court-packing

    Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia was asked on Fox News about the "progressive agenda" - and his thoughts on a practice called "court-packing" that's come up quite a bit during this election.

    Court-packing involves expanding the number of justices on the US Supreme Court (there are currently nine). This is allowed by the Constitution, and Congress has changed the number of seats before, but that hasn't happened since 1896.

    Some Democrats have threatened to revive the process in light of the appointment of a conservative, Amy Coney Barrett, to the top court. Her ascendency has tipped the ideological balance of the court to the right for the first time in decades.

    There is now pressure from the left for a President Biden to try to add seats to the court to readjust the numbers and pressure from the right not to do so.

    Manchin's an interesting Democrat in the Senate as he hails from a conservative state - as a result, he's seen as much more moderate than his other liberal colleagues.

    He held true to that when it comes to court-packing, telling Fox: "I will not vote to pack the courts."

  6. 'We just call him Joe, he’s an everyday guy'

    Video content

    Video caption: Paul Calistro shares some of his anecdotes about the president-elect

    For Joe Biden, the US state of Delaware and his home town of Wilmington have played a big part in his life.

    He represented Delaware in the federal Senate for six terms (36 years) before becoming President Barack Obama's vice-president.

    Paul Calistro, who is the executive director of West End Neighbourhood House, shared some of his anecdotes about the president-elect with BBC World News.

  7. International monitors praise US election

    A team of international monitors from the Organization of American States (OAS) has praised the conduct of the US election.

    The delegation - which had 28 experts and observers from 13 countries - said in its preliminary report: "While the environment of the elections was competitive and fraught, the ability of voters across the country to access the vote in less than ideal circumstances exemplifies the democracy for which the United States is renowned and which it has championed across the globe.

    "The OAS Mission urges all political parties, candidates and citizens to allow this democracy to prevail and to allow the remainder of the electoral process to unfold within the framework of the law."

    The monitors were able to follow campaigning events and the voting itself on 3 November in several locations, including the key battleground states of Georgia and Michigan.

    They said they did not witness any irregularities there, responding to President Trump's claims that the Democrats had tried to steal the elections.

  8. Biden considers legal action on transition agency

    General Services Administration

    Biden's transition team is still waiting for the federal funding and office space it needs to get to work on taking over the levers of power.

    That depends on a federal agency - the General Services Administration (GSA) - led by Trump appointee Emily Murphy.

    She will be the one to sign a letter allowing all this to happen, but for now she says there has been "no ascertainment" or, as a spokeswoman put it more clearly, she has not yet found that "a winner is clear".

    Team Biden is said to be considering legal action, though other options are on the table, according to a Biden official speaking to Reuters.

    Robert MacKichan, who was general counsel to the GSA during the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations, has been speaking to US public radio.

    He says it would be "premature" for her to decide now "given what has been publicly made available".

  9. Not that Four Seasons...

    At first it was the Four Seasons Hotel.

    Then it transpired that Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani's key news conference on Saturday was to take place in the yard of Four Seasons Total Landscaping in Philadelphia - next to an adult content store.

    Giuliani was explaining his boss's legal challenges over the election.

    The BBC's Ros Atkins explains the saga.

    Video content

    Video caption: The 'Four Seasons' saga explained
  10. Bill Barr walks a thin line for Trump

    Anthony Zurcher

    BBC North America reporter

    Attorney General Bill Barr’s memorandum authorising federal election fraud investigations is yet another example of the attorney general’s skill at pleasing his boss, the president, while dancing on the edge of propriety within the Justice Department he runs.

    The document gives Donald Trump what he wants – proof that the government is looking into unproven claims of widespread electoral illegalities in multiple states he narrowly lost. The attorney general, however, couches the memo with conditions and cautions that prosecutors only focus on specific “irregularities” and avoid pursuing “specious, speculative, fanciful or far-fetched claims”.

    Despite all the caveats, the memo will provide fodder to Trump and his supporters, who insist that the election was stolen from them (never mind that other Republican candidates had fairly successful results).

    As the protest resignation of the head of the Justice Department’s election crimes department suggests, this is the equivalent of pulling the pin from a political hand grenade. It may not go off immediately, but the device is one step closer to exploding – whether its throw on purpose or accidentally dropped.

    There are safeguards in place to prevent political meddling in criminal investigations, particularly regarding elections. Some of those safeguards have now been removed.

  11. What's the state of play right now?

    The US election was one week ago, but legal challenges, slow vote counts and political sparring over the results continue. So what's the state of play?

    Pennsylvania

    The Trump campaign has been filing lawsuits in Pennsylvania. The latest is one alleging a violation of the equal voter protection clause, citing a "lack of meaningful observation and transparency" and "disparate treatment" between Republican and Democratic voters - though this claim is heavily disputed.

    Biden's lead remains just over 45,000 votes - which means any one case filed by Trump is unlikely to change the overall result.

    Georgia

    Biden continues to lead Georgia as more votes are still being counted. Right now his margin is over 12,000 votes. We're still waiting on certified results from about half the counties.

    Republican Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler in the state have called on the Republican secretary of state to step down due to alleged "mismanagement and lack of transparency" in this year's election.

    State congressman Doug Collins (who lost his bid against Loeffler to become the Republican Senate nominee) was tapped by the Trump team to demand recounts in the Peach State.

    Arizona

    Biden is also maintaining his lead of over 14,000 votes in Arizona, though Trump has also been winning some of the ballots as they are counted. The state still has around 61,000 ballots left to verify, local media report, but as these are votes that needed verification, it's likely not all of them will eventually count.

    Trump's campaign, joined by state Republicans, has also filed a lawsuit here, alleging some in-person ballots were incorrectly rejected, depriving the president of "potentially thousands" of votes.

    But on Monday, the deputy attorney of the state's largest county told a judge only about 180 ballots would be potentially affected, AZ Central reported.

    North Carolina

    President Trump is leading in this state, but it has yet to be called as there are thousands of votes yet to be tallied.

    State officials are still working through mail ballots. They have until 12 November to count ballots postmarked by 3 November.

  12. Pfizer CEO denies vaccine timing accusations

    Alistair Coleman

    BBC Anti-Disinformation Unit

    The CEO of drug giant Pfizer has denied that yesterday’s vaccine trial announcement was timed to deny US President Donald Trump an election boost.

    Speaking to CNN, Albert Bourla said that he had only learnt of the results - which showed the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine can prevent more than 90% of people from getting Covid-19 - on Sunday.

    That’s not stopped Trump, his son Don Jr, and other conservative commentators from claiming that there was a plot to hit the president at the ballot box.

    Trump claimed in a tweet that the US Food and Drug Administration and the Democratic party delayed the result announcement, but in reality, neither had any control over the timing.

    According to Bourla, the trial results were held by an independent committee which disclosed them on Sunday morning.

    Further claims that Pfizer and BioNTech knew about encouraging results in October have also been made without evidence.

    Pfizer say that they were allowed “interim looks” at the trial data last month, but were unable to draw meaningful conclusions from them.

    Pfizer and BioNTech say they will have enough safety data by the end of the month to take their vaccine to regulators.

  13. New US administration 'must work on new EU relationship'

    European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen
    Image caption: European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said it was time to rethink US-EU ties

    With a new leader in the White House, the US and the EU must work to forge a "new transatlantic agenda", covering issues such as climate change and the digital economy, the European Commission president says.

    "It cannot be that commercial giants benefit enormously from our single market but fail to pay taxes where they should," Ursula von der Leyen told EU ambassadors in a videolink conference, while congratulating President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their projected victory.

    However, she also warned: "Some shifts in priorities and perceptions run much deeper than one politician or administration. And they will not disappear because of one election.

    "We cannot turn the clock back, and we cannot go back to the exact same agenda we had five years ago."

    Tech giants, such as Facebook, have been accused of not paying their fair share of tax in countries where they operate.

  14. World media reaction to US election aftermath

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    Iranian media grab
    Image caption: Iranian media says the US should brace for more chaos

    Three days after the result was projected, the US presidential election is receiving mixed coverage around the world.

    China's main media outlets remain low-key in their reporting, focusing mainly on hard facts without comment.

    However, an editorial in the state-run Global Times newspaper said Trump's "trick to use China as a scapegoat" for his own "inept" handling of the pandemic had failed, and voiced hope for a more "pragmatic attitude" from an incoming Biden administration.

    Iranian media remain transfixed by the election aftermath, despite the country's leaders' contention that they have little interest in who runs America.

    Today, TV channels focus on Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell's statement that Donald Trump is within his rights to dispute the result.

    Iranian state radio said the US should brace for more chaos, and referred to reports that the purchase of guns and ammunition had increased just prior to the election.

    By contrast, the subject has fallen well down the agenda in Russia, where the top news today is the peace deal struck between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh.

    The Kremlin said on Monday that President Vladimir Putin would wait for "official confirmation" before congratulating Biden.

    In Turkey, where Biden has largely been treated with suspicion by pro-government outlets, there's been a shift towards discussion of how Ankara can work with the new administration.

    As one pro-government pundit put it: "We have to learn to live with Biden."

    Like his Russian counterpart, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is yet to congratulate the president-elect on his victory.

  15. How Biden plans to tackle climate change

    Matt McGrath

    Environment correspondent, BBC News, Paris

    Extreme heat warning in Death Valley

    President-elect Joe Biden has a plan to tackle climate - and it has been described as the most ambitious of any mainstream US presidential candidate yet.

    Much will be made about Biden's pledge to re-join the Paris climate agreement, the international pact designed to avoid dangerous warming of the Earth. The US officially withdrew from it last week - the first nation to do so.

    But Biden is also proposing to make US energy production carbon-free by 2035 and to have the country achieve net zero emissions by the middle of the century.

    He wants to spend $2 trillion over four years to drive down emissions by upgrading four million buildings to make them more energy efficient.

    He also wants to spend heavily on public transport, to invest in electric vehicle manufacturing and charging points and give consumers financial incentives to trade up to cleaner cars.

  16. Have any Republicans congratulated Biden?

    A few senior Republicans have publicly acknowleged Joe Biden's victory. Many of them have a history of criticising Republican President Trump.

    Among them are:

    • Susan Collins, the centrist Maine senator, wished Biden "every success" in a statement at the weekend. "First, I would offer my congratulations to President-elect Biden on his apparent victory - he loves this country," she said
    • Utah Senator Mitt Romney tweeted: "Ann [his wife] and I extend our congratulations to President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. We know both of them as people of good will and admirable character"
    • Ben Sasse, the Nebraska senator who has been an outspoken critic of Donald Trump, said he was praying for "both President Trump and President-elect Biden, that both would be wise in the execution of their respective duties during this important time in our nation"
    • Lisa Murkowski of Alaska also congratulated both Biden as the "projected winner of this close and hard-fought presidential race". "While we may not always agree, I will work with [Biden and Harris] to do what is right for Alaska."
    • Separately, former Republican President George W Bush said he had congratulated Biden in a phone call on Sunday. "Though we have political differences, I know Joe Biden to be a good man, who has won his opportunity to lead and unify our country," he said.
  17. Biden aide: Facebook shredding US democracy

    Facebook has been accused of “shredding the fabric” of US democracy by one of Joe Biden’s top aides.

    In a series of tweets, Bill Russo, deputy communications director for Biden’s campaign press team, highlighted a series of incidents in which he said the social media giant failed to take action against “disinformation”.

    One of his complaints was about a video by Trump's former strategist Steve Bannon, “calling for the beheading of FBI Director [Christopher] Wray and Dr Fauci…". "It was live on Facebook for 10 hours before it was removed after a journalist inquired about [it],” said Russo.

    He said thousands of calls for violence on election day were “left up for hours, if not days”, conspiracy theorists were allowed to grow multiple "Stop the Steal" groups with very little intervention, and “Donald Trump vote fraud and election victory lies” were being actively promoted in feeds.

    “We knew this would happen. We pleaded with Facebook for over a year to be serious about these problems. They have not. Our democracy is on the line. We need answers,” he ends his thread by saying.

    We are not aware that Facebook has responded to Russo's accusations, but ahead of the election the platform said it would ban any ads that delegitimised people's right to vote or the result of the race.

  18. 'Will you accept the results of this election?'

    The BBC's Jane O'Brien spoke to some of Donald Trump’s supporters about their thoughts on the election result.

    One of those she spoke to said she was "very concerned about fraud".

    President Trump has alleged irregularities in counting, but has not presented any evidence of election fraud.

    Video content

    Video caption: 'Will you accept the results of this election?'
  19. How Stacey Abrams helped shake up Georgia race

    Chelsea Bailey

    BBC News

    Stacey Abrams

    Democrats in Georgia have almost universal praise for Stacey Abrams, who used her defeat in the 2018 state governor race to launch an operation aimed at countering the voter purges she believed cost her the election.

    Republican incumbent Governor Brian Kemp, during his six years in office, had cancelled voter registrations for more than a million Georgia residents due to “inactivity” or error.

    But what his office saw as maintaining voting records others like Abrams decried as disenfranchisement.

    Since 2018, Abrams and a network of organisations have registered more than 800,000 voters in Georgia alone – a move that is believed to have helped the Democrats to a narrow lead in the state’s presidential contest for the first time in two decades.

    "She could have just sat back and been like, 'Man, I lost,'" 27-year-old Kristin Hunt tells me. "But she turned it into a W [a win] and she went into it, pushing forward and trying to do better for herself and our community."

    You can read more of Chelsea’s story here.

  20. Biden to defend 'Obamacare' ahead of court decision

    US President-elect Joe Biden holds a face mask as he speaks to reporters about efforts to confront the coronavirus disease

    Joe Biden is due to speak later today in his home state of Delaware about the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare - the healthcare reform law that extended access for millions.

    His speech will come just moments ahead of a case at the Supreme Court, which will hear arguments in favour of the health act, but that could also see it overturned.

    The court ruled eight years ago to leave much of the act intact, but since Donald Trump appointed Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court last month, the top US judicial body is now controlled by a 6-3 conservative majority.

    The Trump administration has previously asked the US Supreme Court to invalidate Obamacare.

    Healthcare is one of Biden's top priorities, and he has pledged to build on the Affordable Care Act. On Monday, he urged Americans to put aside their political differences and wear masks to protect themselves and their neighbours from the coronavirus.

    "We could save tens of thousands of lives if everyone would just wear a mask for the next few months. Not Democratic or Republican lives, American lives," he said, adding: "Please, I implore you, wear a mask."

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