News World US Donald Trump Zoe Daniel: Joe Biden’s biggest battle is convincing Trump voters he actually won

Zoe Daniel: Joe Biden’s biggest battle is convincing Trump voters he actually won

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Joe Biden is the President-elect of the United States, but Donald Trump is still the centre of attention, even as he hides away refusing to concede.

Mr Biden won the election with the highest vote for a presidential candidate ever, with almost 76 million votes.

Yet Donald Trump now holds the second-highest tally, at more than 71 million.

Some Democrats will see the decisive turnout that’s reflected in the head-to-head popular vote as a repudiation of Mr Trump; his chaotic administration, divisive policies and offensive rhetoric.

However, he has gained roughly eight million more supporters since he was elected in 2016 with almost 63 million votes.

Several states, which decided the outcome of the election, are close to evenly divided, falling to Mr Biden only narrowly.

In an environment of high tension and extreme partisanship in the US, especially following the President’s largely baseless campaign to delegitimise the election result, Mr Biden faces a difficult task ahead.

Joe Biden pushes ahead with his plans to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. Photo: Getty

Dan Moore, who voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012 and then flipped to the Republicans, has now voted for Donald Trump twice.

The former steelworker has struggled for work for years as the bottom has fallen out of US manufacturing and backed Mr Trump based on his promises of jobs and economic growth. He doesn’t accept the outcome, for the moment.

“I don’t think Biden is officially the president until 30 days from now when delegates meet. A lot of things can happen between now and then.”

In what is usually a formality, delegates from each state meet to confirm the outcome a month after the election.

Former Pennsylvania steelworker Dan Moore outside his old factory. Photo: Zoe Daniel

“I don’t believe until that happens that President Trump is going to give a concession speech,” he says from his home in a state that voted for Mr Trump for the second time.

Ohio has picked the winner in every presidential election since 1964. 2020 breaks the longest streak of any US state.

For Mr Moore, allegations of widespread voter fraud driven by the President, although unsubstantiated, have undermined his faith in the process.

“I’m not feeling very good about it right now,” he said. “There are so many irregularities in Pennsylvania and in other states.

“I don’t feel good.”

Control of Congress may go unchanged after Democrats failed to sweep down-ballot races as expected. This would leave Mr Biden with a Democrat House and a hostile Senate.

So far only a handful of Senate Republicans have even acknowledged Mr Biden’s victory, while the Republican Senate majority leader has backed the incumbent President’s legal action.

President Trump is 100 per cent within his rights to look into allegations of irregularities and weigh his legal options,” Mitch McConnell said.

If Mr Trump had conceded, that may have made a difference to supporters like Dan Moore.

“That would’ve been important. If the feeling was OK, well Biden won fair and square. Well, you know, that would’ve been a lot different from where we’re at now,” he said.

He points to allegations of limited access for poll watchers, extending the deadline for the arrival of mail-in ballots, early voting and possible errors in the verification of ballots.

“I think all of that matters because in some states the margin was so close,” Mr Moore said.

“That’s the way I feel about it.

“I wish I could say it was 100 per cent was a free and fair election. I can’t say that.”

“They’re not all fake – there are plenty of people who legitimately switched their vote in support from Trump to Biden for legitimate reasons.

“This election cycle is a lot different to 2016 or 2012. It’s very confusing and I think unfortunately there are a lot of questions. A lot of doubts”.

The US has now passed 10 million reported cases of COVID-19, with the economy in free fall.

Mr Biden has already begun meeting with health experts, but he won’t take control until after the inauguration in late January.

He’s vowed to be “a president for all Americans,” even those who didn’t vote for him, but first they will have to accept that he actually won the job.

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