Pennsylvania secretary of state: "We are exactly where we said we would be"
By Jason Kurtz
Stay patient: That's the message from Pennsylvania as the Keystone State continues counting votes.
"We're exactly where we said we would be," said Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar during an update from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, the state capital.
Boockvar noted that while nearly half of the state's mail-in ballots have been tabulated, "there are still millions of ballots left to be counted."
Four years ago, during the 2016 presidential race, Pennsylvania had 260,000 ballots cast by mail. Four years later, amid a global pandemic, the 2020 figures will shatter that mark.
"I don't know what the totals are going to end up at, but somewhere between 2.5 million and 3 million ballots," said Boockvar, noting that her state "will be at ten times the number of mail ballots" for this election.
Boockvar's primary message as the tabulations continue? "We are going to accurately count every single ballot."
Pennsylvania secretary of state gives update on state's ballots:
10:54 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Biden expected to address Americans today
From CNN’s Sarah Mucha
Joe Biden will address the American people today as the nation awaits election results.
"We expect that at some point later today that the Vice President will address the American people," Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said on a webstream briefing with reporters.
11:00 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
New York City could see the highest presidential election turnout ever, deputy mayor says
From CNN's Kristina Sgueglia
As votes continue to be counted, New York City could have the highest turnout ever in a presidential election, according to the city's deputy mayor.
About 1.2 million people voted in-person on election day, with a cumulative turnout of 2.3 million people voting so far, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
There are still “hundreds of thousands of absentee ballots, more to be counted,” de Blasio said.
Deputy Mayor Phil Thompson said “yesterday could equal or surpass the highest turnout we’ve ever had in a presidential election in NYC, and this is during the pandemic, which meant you know people had to take extra precautions.”
While the election is “clearly too close to call” on the presidential level, what is clear is “we had both a huge amount of participation and a clean and fair election all over this city all over this nation,” de Blasio said. “That is a fact,” he added.
“Thank God Election Day came off very smoothly in the scheme of things and certainly attribute that in part to the power of early voting," de Blasio said.
He said officials were worried about a lot of things, including interference from foreign nations, hacking or voter suppression efforts, and violence.
"We didn’t see any of those things thank God," he said.
Here's how the voting numbers break down, according to Thompson:
About 1 million people voted early.
About 1 million people voted in-person yesterday.
An additional 1 million people requested absentee ballots. The city is still waiting to see how many were returned.
11:02 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Pennsylvania governor: "We may not know the result even today"
From CNN's Aditi Sangal
Vote counting is still underway in Pennsylvania, and Gov. Tom Wolf says there are about 3 million mail-in ballots being counted. This may delay the result so much so that “we may not know the results even today," he said.
The state is crucial for either presidential candidate’s path to 270 electoral votes to win the US presidency. Pennsylvania is one of nine states where CNN has not yet projected a winner.
“The most important thing is that we have accurate results. Again, even if that takes a little longer than we're used to,” Wolf said at a press conference Wednesday. “For over 200 years, we've upheld and strengthened our commitment to basic fairness and due process. I have full faith that we will similarly meet this moment, and I will do everything within my power to ensure the results are fair and that every vote is counted.”
He also assured that Pennsylvanians can “have confidence in the outcome of this election.”
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf discusses timeline of results:
10:52 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Rep. Debbie Dingell believes Biden will win Michigan but worries about urban-rural divide
From CNN's Dan Merica
Michigan Rep. Debbie Dingell told CNN on Wednesday she is growing more confident that Joe Biden will pull out a win in Michigan once all the votes are counted. But the Democratic congresswoman said that the narrow margin, and continuing urban-rural divide, should deeply worry Democratic leaders.
Dingell, who represents Ann Arbor and areas south of Detroit, has been far more skeptical of the likelihood of Biden winning Michigan over the last month, in large part because of the level of Trump support in rural parts of the state.
“I do believe he is going to win,” Dingell said. “I didn’t say that until Sunday for the first time. I think it is going to be close, but I do believe Joe Biden will pull it out.”
Rural pockets of Michigan used to be home to so-called Dingell Democrats, more conservative and independent voters who backed the late Michigan congressman John Dingell, Debbie Dingell’s husband. But many of those voters slipped away from Democrats over the last decade, highlighted by Trump’s overwhelming win of places like Monroe County, Michigan, in 2016.
The fact that this trend continued with Biden, a candidate who was seen as the best positioned Democrat to woo these voters, should worry top Democrats, Dingell said.
“I think both Republican and Democrats have to look at the divide in this country and both do some serious soul searching,” she said. “For Democrats, we have to look at working men and women… who think we turn our nose on them at times. And Republicans have a very serious problem with women.”
10:31 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Michigan sets new voter turnout record with more than 5.1 million votes
From CNN’s Annie Grayer
The state of Michigan has set a new voter turnout record with at least 5,107,896 votes, according to a CNN tally. This total includes all presidential candidates on the ballot in Michigan, not just former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump.
The record was previously set in 2008 with 5,039,080 votes when former President Barack Obama won the state, according to official results from the Michigan secretary of state website.
In the lead up to Election Day, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson had been predicting the state would reach a record-breaking turnout.
“We are on track to see record breaking turnout,” Benson told reporters Tuesday.
10:30 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Trump campaign confident in a pathway to victory
From CNN's Betsy Klein
The Trump campaign argued to reporters on a conference call Wednesday that President Trump is in a “very, very, very good position” to win the election as the votes continue to be counted in key battleground states.
First, some context: CNN has not projected a winner in nine states across the country — Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Maine, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Votes are still being counted, and there is still a pathway to victory for both President Trump and Joe Biden
The Trump campaign is arguing that mail-in ballots still to be counted will break in Trump’s favor. That directly contradicts the President’s assertion overnight that ballots should stop being counted. Again, the ballots still being counted are perfectly legal. The campaign believes they will win Arizona by a narrow margin, as well as Pennsylvania.
“We are confident on our pathway. We are confident in our math. We are viewing some of these races as math equations,” campaign manager Bill Stepien said, adding, “We project with confidence because of the math we believe is in front of us.”
He claimed without evidence that Democrats are “pushing to count late ballots” because “if we count all legal ballots, we win.”
Wisconsin, Stepien said, is a “tight race within one percent,” which, he said, is “recount territory.”
In Michigan, he said there are outlying Republican counties and they are “confident in a pathway that includes Michigan.”
In Nevada, “late breaking math helps us in Nevada.”
The campaign continued to push back on Arizona, which has been called by some other outlets in favor of Biden. CNN has not made a projection in Arizona.
“Late arriving votes cast closest to election day are the ones being counted now,” Stepien said, adding that they expect about half a million votes left to be counted, and between 2/3 and 70% of those ballots “are coming to the President.”
“That math adds up to a margin of around 30,000 votes in the president’s favor,” Stepien said, adding that Arizona “will come the president’s way.”
In Pennsylvania, Stepien said, they also believe remaining ballots will “exceed the splits we’ve seen to this point.”
The call just wrapped with no questions.
10:06 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
US stocks open higher following election night
From CNN’s Anneken Tappe
America does not yet know who the next president will be, yet US stocks opened decidedly higher Wednesday morning.
Market analysts believed a delayed election outcome would cause widespread uncertainty, which is typically the enemy of Wall Street.
The market isn’t showing signs of panic, though, perhaps because it had already priced in the fact that the election may not be decided anytime soon.
Here's where things stand this morning:
The Dow climbed 0.9%, or some 230 points.
The S&P 500 opened 1.5% higher.
The Nasdaq Composite rallied the most, jumping 2.6%.
Growth stocks have performed well under the Trump administration and a second term could herald more of the same fruitful environment. At the same time, betting markets are still very clearly favoring Joe Biden to win, which would likely lead to more government stimulus.
10:03 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020
Here's why Trump's current sizable lead in Pennsylvania is not insurmountable for Biden
From CNN's Aditi Sangal
President Trump is currently ahead in Pennsylvania by about 618,000 votes, but that lead is not insurmountable for Joe Biden because of “what’s outstanding, based on where it’s outstanding, and based on the method in which that vote was cast outstanding,” CNN’s Phil Mattingly explains.
About 1 million — and possibly more — absentee votes are yet to be counted.
That matters because Democrats expect big turnout in places like Philadelphia, counties around Philadelphia and Alleghany County, which is home to Pittsburgh. It’s not happened yet but that’s largely because of the votes that haven’t been counted yet.
“That is a ton of vote outstanding in Democratic stronghold counties that is absentee,” Mattingly says, adding that typically, a lead of 618,000 votes is a lot to make up with 1 million outstanding votes. But “not when absentee has been going 70%, 75% Biden's way over what we've seen in Wisconsin, what we've seen in Michigan.”
Remember: There was still a big voter turnout for President Trump in western Pennsylvania counties. So the outstanding vote doesn't mean that Biden is going to catch up. It just means that there is an opportunity for the Biden campaign in the state.
CNN's Phil Mattingly breaks down Trump's lead in Pennsylvania: