America votes: Five big takeaways from the US election so far

America votes: Five big takeaways from the US election so far
While final results may still be days away, here are five key takeaways so far from the US elections.
4 min read
04 November, 2020
The world will have to wait to see who is America's next president [Getty]

Voting has closed, but US President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden still remain locked in the race for the crucial 270 electoral college votes.
As vote counting continues, here are five key takeaways from the US election so far:

1. Latino voters swung Florida for Trump

Since his 2016 election victory, President Trump focused on Florida's Latino vote - a move which appears to have paid dividends in Tuesday's election.

The president secured around 55 percent of the Sunshine State's Cuban-American vote, according to an NBC NEWS exit poll, along with 30 percent of Puerto Ricans and 48 percent of "other Latinos".

The president played on the anti-socialist sentiment among Hispanic voters, particularly among the Cuban and Venezuelan communities.

2. The race is closer than predicted

Backed by positive polling data in key battleground states, the Democrats expected a swift victory for Joe Biden. Now into Wednesday, it is still unclear who will take the Oval Office.

Just two days before the election, poll tracker FiveThirtyEight gave Biden a comfortable 8.4 percentage point lead over Trump. Crucially, the data indicated that the Democratic candidate would take Florida - a key state the president managed to retain. Only one poll - the Rasmussen poll - accurately projected a Trump victory, albeit with a 1 percent margin.

Biden's failure to secure Florida dashed hopes of an early victory, with the race now going to the wire.

3. Did Bernie call it?

A video of an interview from last week with Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is making the rounds on social media, with many saying that the fromer democratic presidential candidate accurately predicted what is now unfolding.

On 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' Sanders said:  "every vote must be're going to have a situation I suspect in states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and other states where they are going to be receiving huge amounts of mail-in ballots. They're not able to, for bad reasons, begin processing those ballots until - I don't know - Election Day or maybe when the polls close. You're going to have states dealing with perhaps millions of mail-in ballots."

Sanders continued predicting that, "It could well be that at 10 on Election night, Trump is winning in Michigan, he's winning in Pennsylvania, he's winning in Wisconsin, and he gets on television and says, 'Thank you Americans for re-electing me. It's all over. Have a good day.'"

President Trump's premature victory claim on Wednesday morning - unprecedented for a US president - came as states continued to count votes - including millions of postal ballots that may take days to get through.

Trump's talk of voter fraud also raised concern among observers, who prior to the election warned of possible unrest if the president does not concede defeat.

4. Results could be days away

Experts are saying that final results may not be out until as late as Friday, despite both candidates claiming to be on the path to victory. 

Officials in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan - all key battlegrounds - have warned that it could be days before counting finishes.

Observers fear that this delay could allow President Trump to further his claims of electoral fraud and foul play.

Trump as already threatened to go to the Supreme Court over which could threaten to drag on a final result being announced.

5. Trumpism may be here for the long run

Trump may well lose the election, but the results so far show that the populist movement he built will not go away.

The Biden landslide failed to materialise, with the Democrats' best efforts in Iowa, Ohio, Texas and Florida having fallen short.

After the election, both the Democrats and anti-Trump Republicans will likely have to take stock of how the US' unconventional 45th president changed the landscape of its politics for the forseaable future.

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