US Election: Joe Biden projected to win Electoral College 306-232, as final states called

Biden and Trump.
Biden and Trump. Photo credit: Getty

Democrat Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump in the state of Georgia, while Trump won North Carolina, Edison Research projected on Friday as it called the final two states in the US presidential race.

Edison Research said Biden had won 306 Electoral College votes to Trump’s 232. Biden had surpassed the 270 Electoral College votes needed to capture the presidency on Saturday.

Biden's victory in the battleground state of Arizona expanded his electoral vote margin over Trump on Friday (NZ time), placing any hopes of Trump reversing the outcome through the courts or recounts even further out of reach.

Biden was projected to win Arizona and its 11 electoral votes on Thursday after more than a week of vote counting from the November 3 election, Edison Research said. He becomes only the second Democratic presidential candidate in seven decades to win the traditionally Republican state.

The margin - 306-232 - would have been the same as that in 2016, when Trump defeated Hillary Clinton, except that year a number of electors in the Electoral College pledged for candidates other than those the public had actually voted for. 

Although the national popular vote does not determine the election outcome, Biden is winning that by more than 5.3 million votes, or 3.4 percentage points. His share of the popular vote is now up to 50.8 percent, slightly higher than Ronald Reagan's share of the vote in 1980 when he defeated Jimmy Carter.

Trump, a Republican, has claimed without evidence that he was cheated by widespread election fraud and has refused to concede. State election officials report no serious irregularities, and several of his legal challenges have failed in court.

While Republicans in the United States have questioned the outcome, US allies around the world have recognized Biden's victory since Saturday. Rival China on Friday became the latest country to congratulate Biden, leaving Russia and Mexico as conspicuous holdouts.

Reuters / Newshub.