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Kamala Harris Speaks to Reporters in Detroit; USPS Ordered to Sweep Some Facilities by 3 P.M. for Election Mail; Biden's Likeliest Route to the White House; Trump's Realistic Path to Re-election; Biden Campaigns in Battleground Pennsylvania, the State that Could Determine the Election Outcome; Maine Crucial Due to Split Electoral Votes & Maine District 2; How the Election Results Will Affect U.S. Relationships with Countries Around the World. Aired 1:30-2p ET

Aired November 3, 2020 - 13:30   ET



ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: Next, a U.S. district court judge ordering the postal service to sweep underperforming districts for election mail processing facilities by 3:00 p.m. Eastern time in a bunch of states, including some crucial battleground states.

We'll have details next because this is significant as to whether those ballots will count.

And Election Day very personal for Senator Tim Kaine. He was Hillary Clinton's running mate, of course, as you know. How is he feeling about tonight?

You're watching special Election Day coverage in America.


DON LEMON, CNN HOST: We're back now live with CNN's Election Day coverage.

You're looking at Senator Kamala Harris, V.P. candidate, now speaking. She's in Detroit, Michigan. Let's listen in.

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA) & VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: -- are seen and heard by Joe and me and also that they may actually decide the outcome of this race.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Senator, what is your message to some Americans who are on edge about potential unrest tonight? What would you say to that?

HARRIS: Have faith in the American people.

I do strongly believe that we, whoever you vote for, will defend the integrity of our democracy and a peaceful transfer of power. And that there are certain lines that, whoever you vote for, that we won't cross.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How are you feeling about your chances today?

HARRIS: Listen, the day ain't over. Ask me after the polls close. Maybe I'll have a better idea.

But right now, I'm just here to remind people to vote because the election is still happening right now. It's not over.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, all.

LEMON: Senator Kamala Harris appears to be at the airport in Detroit, Michigan, taking a couple questions from the media.

Someone asked her about the peaceful transition of power. She says she hopes there will be one. And saying the day is not over. People are out there still voting. And that is so.

As we are going through this, there's breaking news to tell you about.

A U.S. district court judge has ordered the postal service to sweep underperforming districts for election mail processing facilities and to do it by 3:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m. Eastern time, in a number of states, including some critical battleground states.

We want to get straight to Ana Cabrera. She's on top of this breaking news for us.

Ana, where is this happening and why?

ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST, "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT": It appears they are struggling to move ballots on time, Don. And ballots are now at significant risk of not making to election offices in time to be counted.

A federal judge just ordered these sweeps to happen in the underperforming districts to, quote, "ensure that no ballots have been held up and that any identified ballots are immediately sent out for delivery."

This comes after we learned today is the fifth day in a row that ballots are moving slower through the mail than the day before, especially in these critical battleground states. This is according to some new court filings.

And in five of these states with low processing scores, Michigan, Wisconsin, Georgia, New Hampshire and Maine, they do not allow ballots to be received after Election Day.

Consider this, the secretary of state of Georgia saying, as of this morning, they still had nearly a quarter million outstanding ballots that were sent out to be mailed in that had been requested and had had not been returned just yet.

The USPS says these delays are largely due to staffing shortages because of COVID-19.

But the postal service has been ordered to take extraordinary measures to get these ballots to the election offices by the cutoff time for each of these states.

Again, a federal judge now upping the anti-once more, ordering USPS to have the postal inspectors to sweep these processing facilities in underperforming districts for election mail by 3:00 p.m. Eastern. So the next hour and a half, Don.

LEMON: We have to keep a close eye on the postal system. We have been since there have been irregularities with the postmaster general and the president, the guy he put in place.

So we'll discuss. Ana Cabrera is on top of it. She's following that for us.

I want to get to Harry Enten, CNN politics senior writer and analyst.

Harry, good to see you during the daytime.

Here we go. We've got -- tell us what we should expect to unfold? How is this night going to unfold? Do you know?

HARRY ENTEN, CNN POLITICS SENIOR WRITER & ANALYST: Well, no. I don't know how it's going to unfold in terms of the outcome, right? But I think we have a pretty good --


LEMON: I don't mean the outcome.

ENTEN: Right. Right. But I think we have a pretty good understanding sort of how the votes are going to come in, right?

And we know this is something we've been discussing for a long time. There's a major break between certain parts of the country that the mail-in votes that will be delivered first.

Essentially, what you see is, before Election Day, they can process the mail-in votes in places like Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, that along the Sun Belt, versus in the Midwest, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin. They can only start processing those mail-in votes on or after Election Day.

So essentially, we might not get results in those key midwestern battlegrounds for a while in converse to Arizona, Florida and North Carolina.

It wouldn't be surprise if we know who has won there this evening. LEMON: Let's talk about the different reporting times for mail-in and

in-person ballots. That's going to impact what kind of results we're seeing and when we're seeing them.

Explain that for us, Harry.

ENTEN: Sure. You know, it's just so important to point out there's just been a huge partisan split in the different ways that people are sort of voting, right?

We know in Florida, for example, just the in-person early vote and the vote-by-mail differed significantly by party registration.

My guess is the in-person day of vote, Election Day vote is going to differ again.

So in a state like Florida, where the mail-in votes and the early votes will be counted first, you would expect someone like Joe Biden to jump out to a lead an then, as those Election Day votes start coming in, Trump will catch up.

Versus, in the northern battleground, what we should expect is Joe Biden will actually be behind significantly in those early results probably, if you believe the polls, and then he'll catch up as those votes come in.

Very different picture in the Sun Belt where Trump will do worse in the early ballots, versus the northern belt and those midwestern states where he'll do better in the early returns.

LEMON: Joe Biden is spending the final hours of his race making stops in Pennsylvania. That's a state that is really important to him and it's important to the president as well. Not essential to Joe Biden in his path to 270.

Walk us through Biden's likeliest routes to the White House.

ENTEN: Sure. So we'll just start off with the easiest, which is essentially, win the states that Hillary Clinton won.

And then add in Pennsylvania, add in Michigan and add in Wisconsin, and that gets you -- plus, Nebraska's second congressional district -- you can see Nebraska weird color in there -- that gets you to 279 electoral votes.

That is Biden's best path at this particular moment. And you'll notice he doesn't have to win Florida. He doesn't have to win North Carolina. And he doesn't have to win Arizona on this particular map.


LEMON: But he has to win Pennsylvania?

ENTEN: He has to win on that particular map.

But I will -- if we flip forward one more slide, there's a map we can win without Pennsylvania.

And that's a very interesting map where, if Joe Biden, even if he loses in Pennsylvania, but he wins Arizona, plus Nebraska's second congressional district, plus Michigan and Wisconsin, that get him exactly to 270 electoral votes.

There's an alternate path for Biden even if he loses Pennsylvania. But it's very, very tight, Don.

LEMON: Let's talk about the president now. He may have -- his path I think is a bit narrower than Joe Biden's. But he does have a path. There's a realistic route to his re-election.

The best scenario for the president?

ENTEN: Yes, right. He does have a path. This election, I would not be shocked if Donald Trump won this election.

His best path basically relies -- he has to win Pennsylvania and Arizona, plus then hold in the southeast with Florida and North Carolina and Georgia.

But essentially, the big thing you should take away from this, Don, is Donald Trump, almost assuredly, has to carry both Pennsylvania and Arizona.

If he does not, if Joe Biden wins one of those two states, it could be a very, very long night for the president.

LEMON: All right. Harry, you ready? We're going to be up until the wee hours.

ENTEN: I am so ready. I have my drink right here. I'm drinking the caffeine. No naps. We're just going straight on through.

You and me, Don, we'll do it together.

LEMON: I'm going to need a nap. You're a young whipper snapper. I'm going to need a nap. I'm an old man.

ENTEN: I try.

LEMON: Thank you, Harry.

ENTEN: Thanks, Don.

LEMON: I'll see you a little bit later on.


LEMON: Next, we'll check in on the battleground Pennsylvania. Battleground Pennsylvania at this hour where Joe Biden is trying to rustle up last-minute votes.



BURNETT: Welcome back to our special election coverage, ELECTION DAY IN AMERICA.

Former Vice President Joe Biden is spending part of today in Pennsylvania, visiting Philadelphia and the town of his birth, Scranton.

I want to check in with Alex Field. She is in Pittsburgh right now.

And, obviously, Alex, Pennsylvania, it all could come down to Pennsylvania.

And you know we're starting to get some details, crucial counties saying we're starting to tabulate, starting to put things together from this record-breaking early vote.

So, where you are right now, how divided are voters?

ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, Pennsylvania is divided. That's why we've seen both of the campaigns put so much time, so many resources into it.

You have seen President Trump spending his time in the areas of state where he is popular, really going after the voters who turned out for him before.

Joe Biden, of course, would have more of the advantage in the big cities.

What's interesting about the spot that we're in is that we're in Allegheny County, home to Pittsburgh, of course. It's the spot of blue in the sea of red back in 2016 when President Trump flipped the state by just 44,000 votes.

But in this neighborhood, Franklin Park, they actually did tilt toward Trump.

So people who lined up to vote here earlier this morning tell me their neighborhoods are deeply divided. They say there are strong ideologic, political, emotional divides that are separated by nothing more than a fence or a driveway.

They've also described this as a tense day. They say they have anxiety. They say they know so much of the country and the world is focused on what happens right here in Pennsylvania.

And they say all that anxiety is heightened by the fact that we might not know the results from Pennsylvania for at least a few days -- Erin?

BURNETT: Right. That, of course, is -- nobody wants to be on those pins and needles.

Just in terms of the wait times in the polling stations, how long would you say about, Alex, that people are waiting to vote today? FIELD: So, we saw a big rush of people right when the polls opened.

We've been to two different sites in Franklin Park this morning. A couple people went to the first one even before the site opened.

Throughout the morning, we saw pretty heavy foot traffic. People were waiting an hour. Some people said they waited as much as an hour and a half.

At this point, Erin, IN the middle of the day, you can walk right into this site and vote.

So, there was a tremendous amount of enthusiasm that was visible this morning. It seems to have tapered off. Maybe in the afterwork hours, we'll see it pick up again.

But Pennsylvania is also a state that had three million mail-in ballots requested, 2.5 returned. About 80 percent there.

BURNETT: We don't know where those 600,000, when they're coming if they choose to vote in person.

But I think it's so interesting what you're saying, Alex. That surge and then the little lull. What does that mean?

Are we going to hit these record numbers? Is there going to be another surge later in the day? We're seeing this other places as well, not everywhere, some places.

But there are real questions. What it will mean, and we all are, as I said, on pins and needles.

So if your ballot in Pennsylvania -- with this focus on the ballots, Alex, say you get a notification your ballot was rejected, one of those, you know, 3.1 million mail-in ballots.

Can they go to the polls today and cast a vote, you know, if there are other ballots rejected?

FIELD: Yes, sure. You can still go in and ask for a provisional ballot. There are still mail-in ballots that can be submitted today.

You can also take your mail-in ballot right to a polling place if you want to vote in person. Instead, you have to surrender it there and then you can just go through the regular in-person voting process.

So we still don't know what that total number will be when it comes to that 3.1 million that were applied for. We don't know the total number of voters that the state will net out of that number of requested ballots.

You're right, and we have to have patience while we tease out what the enthusiasm looks like.

This is a state that doesn't have any history of early voting with this quantity of mail-in ballots. So, yes, there was a lot of enthusiasm for that. We have to see it if holds up through the day if a lot of people are

voting that way for convenience or if we're going to see record numbers here -- Erin?

BURNETT: That's a big question. And 102 million ballots, just so everyone remembers, cast early, early votes in this country, record setting by any measure.

And some projecting overall voting could go up to 160 million, which would be levels we haven't seen in more than 100 years. We just don't know. It all depends on the in-person turnout today.

So let's go to Brewer, Maine. Maine crucial because of the split Electoral College votes there and what's going to happen in Maine District Two.

I want to go to Evan McMorris-Santoro in Brewer, Maine.


Evan, totally different -- Alex had her coat on but not nearly as cold as where you are right now. So, the weather, snow that you had at one point, how is the weather affecting turnout?

EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Erin. For the past couple of days here in Maine, it's been pleasant and dry.

But Mother Nature wanted to make sure that everybody knew I was in Maine on Election Day. So we're getting this snowy day. It came down this morning. There are about three inches this morning.

At first, some officials we spoke to were worried it might affect turnout a bit. That hasn't actually happened. People have shown up. It's Maine. They're used to it. They've come out and voted.

Here, in Brewer, Maine, where I am, you mentioned this in that second congressional district, that all-important district, that can flip, and actually did for President Trump in 2016.

This place had a big, long line this morning and through most of the morning. But now things have quieted down a little bit. But election officials tell me, inside, it's still a steady group of voters coming in today.

And also, as you heard from Pennsylvania, 64 percent, more than 64 percent of the 2016 turnout already happened in Maine before today --


MCMORRIS-SANTORO: -- with that absentee and early voting.

BURNETT: Again, a question what this really means.

How early do you think we could see results, Even, tonight from Maine?

MCMORRIS-SANTORO: Well, the polls close here at 8:00. If you're in line at 8:00, you're able to still vote.

Of course, Maine is one of those states with that Scantron voting system where you fill a little bubble in, you put it into a machine. That's very, very quick to count.

And I can tell you they've already counted a lot of those absentee ballots. We've seen them do it. We saw them do it down in another part of the state earlier in the week.

And also, over in Bangor, where I was earlier today, in the bowels of the voting room, where they're doing it, they have a big room where they're counting absentee ballots now.

They're hoping to have all of the results, from absentee and in- person, pretty quickly tonight.

BURNETT: All right. We'll see and all hope that, indeed, is the case.

Evan, thank you.

And this election is watched around the world, around the world in a way it never has before. So how will the results affect U.S. relationships with countries around this world? We are watching.

Special coverage, "ELECTION DAY IN AMERICA," right here on CNN.



BURNETT: And welcome back to CNN's special coverage of "ELECTION DAY IN AMERICA."

As stores across this country boarded up in preparation for any possible unrest, it isn't just Americans who are on edge.

The world is watching. And everyone cares about the American election. But right now, more than ever. Everything is at stake.

Our chief international anchor, Christiane Amanpour, joins me now.

Christiane, it is an incredible moment just because everybody cares deeply. Everybody is watching this.

I guess, I don't want to oversimplify it, but who do America's allies want to win tonight?

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR, "AMANPOUR": On the whole, and by a vast majority, they want Biden to win.

Why? Because they want America to get back to its regular role in the world as a sort of gatherer, convener of the multilateral world order that has worked since end of World War II, in which the United States that been supporting and leading.

And they don't like what we're told by the former, for instance, British chancellor of the Exchequer, the treasury secretary, former Foreign Minister Philip Hammond said to us that he doesn't think another four years would be survivable of a Trump presidency.

Because he calls it the world in a deep freeze of a hostile U.S. disengagement. It sounds complex.

But what it means is the U.S. has pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal, out of the climate deal, has tried to sort of, you know, to an extent, ruffle NATO and what it does, pull troops out of West Germany. Done a lot of things that has destabilized the alliance.

So certainly, the Europeans would like to see a Biden win. Although they do not think it will be American engagement status quo ante. They know the U.S. is sort of fed up of international intervention.

If you go further in the allied camp, go to Israel, they would like to see a Trump win. There's no doubt about it. Although, they had a very nice statement provided to us in case Biden should win.

But they like the fact that President Trump has, as they say, raised the bar in terms of international engagement or U.S. engagement with the Middle East.

It has seen what they wanted, an American president isolate Iran even further than it has ever been isolated. Give the current government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu everything that he wants in terms of a so-called peace deal.

You know it's in the deep freeze, any idea of peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.

And has enabled Netanyahu to dispense with the idea of land for peace or anything for peace by engineering these normalizations with the UAE, with Bahrain, with Sudan, which cost Israel a big, fat nothing, and is in the great interest of Israel.

Those are some of the issues from allied camps. The pros and the cons.


AMANPOUR: Of course, Saudi Arabia and the fossil fuel countries would very much like President Trump.

BURNETT: Right. Right. Of course.

You know, you do look at, right, Israel, Jerusalem. UAE and Israel now have a trade agreement. There have been things that have happened in the past few years that many would have thought were a long way out, if ever.

What about American's adversaries? Christiane, we always - in all the intelligence reporting, right, that Russia was rooting for Trump and China for Biden, and who's intervening. And Iran obviously also involved in electioneering.

When you look at the adversary side of the ledger, what do you see? AMANPOUR: Well, let's just take the biggest one, which is essentially

competitor, if you don't want to call it adversary, which is China.

I think this is important because it's where President Trump has put a huge amount of his energy, whether it's on trade, on tariffs, whether it's trying to rebalance what many think there should be a China/U.S. relationship.

There's a major competition now for global dominance between these two huge powers.


Now, in a swipe -- potentially a swipe directed at President Trump, last week, President Xi said the following words: "In the contemporary world, no amount of unilateralism, protectionism or extreme egotism could work."