Joe Biden takes razor-thin lead in Georgia, but US election isn't over

Not enough for outright victory.

Sulaiman Daud | November 06, 2020, 05:31 PM

Joe Biden, the Democrat candidate for president of the United States, has taken a lead in the Southern state of Georgia.

At around 5:30pm (Singapore time), CNN confirmed that Joe Biden has taken a lead in the Peach State.

Decision Desk HQ also reported the same, with the former Vice-President taking a lead of 917 votes.

If Biden's lead holds, he will win the state's prize of 16 electoral votes.

The last time Georgia voted for a Democrat during a presidential election was for Bill Clinton in 1992.

Clinton went on to become president.

Overseas ballots

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the overseas vote could yet play a part in deciding the fate of Georgia.

There are 8,899 absentee ballots from military and overseas voters that have still not been returned.

These ballots have a later deadline than other absentee ballots.

In addition, Georgia allows voters some time to check if their ballot has been rejected due to administrative errors and correct them.

Therefore, there is a possible (although unlikely) scenario that these overseas and corrected ballots could hand the lead back to Trump.

Has Joe Biden won the election?

Unfortunately for viewers around the world who are looking for a definitive answer to the protracted election, even if Biden goes on to win Georgia, his victory is yet to be projected.

This is because according to CNN's projections, Joe Biden currently holds 253 electoral votes.

Screenshot from 270 to Win.

If Biden does win Georgia, he would get 269 Electoral Votes.

This is just one short of the total needed to declare victory.

What about Arizona?

Arizona has been called for Joe Biden by Fox News and the Associated Press.

However, other networks like CNN have not yet called the Grand Canyon State definitively for the former vice-president, as Trump still could potentially win it.

Biden has a lead of about 47,000 votes, with about 10 per cent of the total ballots yet to be counted.

But if Biden does win Arizona, its 11 electoral votes combined with Geogia's 16 electoral votes would be enough to push Biden over the threshold and make him the President-elect.

What if it's a draw?

There could be a very unusual outcome ahead if Biden wins the state of Georgia -- and nothing else.

Assuming that Trump wins all the other remaining states, Alaska, Pennsylvania, Nevada, North Carolina and confirms one electoral vote from Maine's second congressional district, the map would look like this:

Screenshot from 270 to Win.

Yes, that's a draw. Both candidates have 269 Electoral Votes, not enough to declare victory outright.

So what happens?

First of all, the decision will go back to the Senate and the House of Representatives, according to Brookings:

"The Constitution is pretty clear on how this plays out. If there is no winner in the Electoral College, Article 2, Section 1, Clause 3 states that the decision goes to the House of Representatives while the Senate picks the Vice-President."

However, the voting is different for senators as compared to representatives. Each senator gets a vote, and with the Senate likely to remain in Republican hands, this means Mike Pence will likely be elected vice-president again.

In the case of a tie, Trump is likely reelected President

But in the House, each state has only one vote for president -- regardless of its size -- and a presidential candidate needs 26 states to win.

According to the Constitution, "But in chusing [sic] the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote."

This means the election of the president depends on which party controls the delegation of each state. And with Republicans doing well in State Legislature elections, this would likely mean that Donald Trump would be reelected president by them.

This means that Joe Biden needs to avoid the 269-draw scenario if he is to be elected president.

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Top image from the Democratic Party of Georgia Facebook page.