Please Note

The Washington Post is providing this important election information free to all readers. Get election results and other major news delivered to your inbox by signing up for breaking news email alerts.

This coverage has ended. Follow here for Monday’s updates.

Former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) are planning their transition effort, including the establishment of a coronavirus task force that is set to be unveiled Monday.

The moves by the president-elect and vice president-elect come as George W. Bush became the latest former president to congratulate the Democrats on their victory.

President Trump, meanwhile, has continued to tweet false claims that the election was marked by fraud. He spent much of Sunday at his golf course in Sterling, Va., marking his 210th day golfing since becoming president.

On Sunday afternoon, he complained about news outlets’ decision Saturday to call the race for Biden. “Since when does the Lamestream Media call who our next president will be?” Trump tweeted. “We have all learned a lot in the last two weeks!”

Here’s what to know now
  • Biden is planning to quickly sign executive orders after being sworn into office on Jan. 20, forecasting that the country’s politics have shifted and that his presidency will be guided by radically different priorities.
  • Trump’s bid to discredit the integrity of the U.S. election results has raised fears, even among his own aides, that he will refuse to concede and will seek to undermine a potential transfer of power.
  • Celebrations erupted across the country as Biden was declared the winner of the presidency.
5:40 p.m.
Link copied
link

Corey Lewandowski and Republican Party chief of staff test positive for the coronavirus

Two additional Trump advisers have contracted the coronavirus, officials said Thursday.

Corey Lewandowski, the president’s former campaign manager who has taken a leading role in the fight to overturn the election results, tested positive Wednesday, a person familiar with the matter said on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

Lewandowski has told people he believes he contracted the virus in Pennsylvania, where he is on behalf of Trump. Lewandowski also stood beside Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, in the East Room on election night. Meadows has since tested positive. Lewandowski was wearing a mask.

Additionally, Richard Walters, the chief of staff for the Republican Party, tested positive Thursday, according to a spokesman for the Republican National Committee. Walters had not been in the White House in recent weeks and was not present for the election night party. The spokesman said the RNC is following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance and has begun contact-tracing.

2:02 a.m.
Link copied
link

Even in defeat, the embers of Trumpism still burn in the Republican Party

With President Trump defeated, there is a pivotal question coursing through American politics: What becomes of Trumpism?

Since 2016, that political movement has commandeered the Republican Party and fused White grievances over the nation’s demographic changes with fierce rejection of liberal elites and global engagement.

But more than anything else, Trumpism has united millions under the impulses and ideas of one man: Donald Trump. Now that its titular head has lost the election, the movement faces volatility and a political vacuum.

1:31 a.m.
Link copied
link

Rep. Doug Collins will lead Trump’s recount team in Georgia, campaign says

Rep. Douglas A. Collins (R-Ga.), who fell short in his bid for the Senate, will lead President Trump’s “recount team” in closely contested Georgia, the Trump campaign said Sunday.

Joe Biden leads Trump by about 10,000 votes in the longtime Republican stronghold, a narrow margin that Georgia officials have said will almost surely lead to a recount. It’s a marked shift from 2016, when the president won Georgia by more than five percentage points.

Announcing Collins’s role, the Trump campaign continued to cast aspersions on the voting system: “During the coming recount, we are confident we will find evidence of improperly harvested ballots and other irregularities that will prove that President Trump won Georgia fairly again on his way to re-election as President,” Collins said in a statement.

Trump and his allies have made false and unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud around the country, rejecting Biden’s victory. Citing lack of evidence, a Georgia judge swiftly denied the campaign’s lawsuit to disqualify about 50 ballots alleged to have arrived after an Election Day deadline.

1:05 a.m.
Link copied
link

Here are the GOP and Trump campaign’s allegations of election irregularities. So far, none have been proved.

Republicans have made claims of election irregularities in five states where President-elect Joe Biden leads in the vote count, alleging in lawsuits and public statements that election officials did not follow proper procedures while counting ballots in Tuesday’s election.

So far, they have gone 0 for 5.

Since Election Day, President Trump has repeatedly claimed that a broad conspiracy of misdeeds — apparently committed in both Republican and Democratic states — had cost him the election.

12:21 a.m.
Link copied
link

For Biden fans, one unifying standard: Old Glory

WILMINGTON, Del. — If there was one enduring symbol of Joe Biden’s nationwide election party on Saturday night, it was the American flag.

In the riverfront district of Wilmington, near the parking lot from which Biden delivered his victory speech to the nation, flags flew everywhere. There was the Big Flag, a huge Old Glory hoisted between two cranes and visible from the interstate. It flew for a week as the ballot-counting agonizingly continued, ripping at least twice, and becoming a temporary Wilmington landmark.

An American flag bigger than a barn door hung on the side of the Chase Center, which served as the backdrop for the speeches delivered by Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala D. Harris. Another draped vertically off a wall of the nearby Daniel S. Frawley minor league baseball stadium. One more, about a story high, was suspended from the side of a nearby Westin hotel.

But perhaps its most evocative use came from everyday people.

11:45 p.m.
Link copied
link

Lame-duck Congress and lame-duck president face huge challenges in coming weeks

Lawmakers return to Washington on Monday for Congress’s lame-duck session confronting a number of major problems but lacking clear signals from Trump — even as Biden and his team are poised to begin engaging with congressional Democrats on their priorities.

Congress faces a government shutdown deadline and crucial economic relief negotiations at a moment of extraordinary national uncertainty, with Trump refusing to concede the presidential election and with coronavirus cases spiking nationwide.

Even before Biden takes office on Jan. 20, Congress must contend with a Dec. 11 government funding deadline. Failure to reach a deal would result in a government shutdown, and Trump has not signaled whether he would sign a new spending bill.

At the same time, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) have both expressed the desire to pass new economic and health-care relief measures to address the surging coronavirus pandemic — something Congress has not been able to do since the spring. But it is uncertain whether they will be able to find common ground in the weeks ahead: McConnell is pushing for a narrow and targeted bill, while Pelosi continues to insist on a broader and bolder relief package.

Members of Biden’s transition team, meanwhile, are expected to begin conversations with congressional Democrats and aides this coming week to map out a strategy for the lame-duck session, with the aim of getting money for their priorities in spending legislation before the end of the year, two people familiar with the developments said Sunday. They spoke on the condition of anonymity because the conversations were private.

10:35 p.m.
Link copied
link

Abigail Spanberger wins reelection in Virginia’s 7th District

First-term Democratic Rep. Abigail Spanberger (Va.) has won reelection, according to Edison Research, fending off Republican challenger and state Del. Nick Freitas (R-Culpeper) to represent Virginia’s 7th Congressional District for another term.

Spanberger had declared victory Wednesday evening after a set of absentee-vote tallies gave her the lead in the race. She thanked her challenger for a “hard-fought campaign” in her remarks Wednesday.

“I have listened to the people who elected me, as well as those who did not,” she said.

Spanberger, a former CIA officer, entered the House in 2018 after narrowly defeating Republican Rep. Dave Brat (R-Va.), among the victories that helped Democrats retake the House majority. The Democrats are projected to retain their control of the House, though with a slimmer margin than the one they had after the 2018 midterms.

The Democratic Party fell short of predictions that it would grow its majority, losing multiple seats it flipped in the last election cycle.

Spanberger was among the centrist House Democrats who criticized their liberal colleagues on a private conference call on Thursday, saying their far-left views cost the party seats in the election.

9:04 p.m.
Link copied
link

Trump campaign aide tweets, deletes images of headquarters plastered with fake ‘PRESIDENT GORE’ front page

A Trump campaign spokesman on Sunday tweeted photos of the president’s campaign headquarters plastered in what appeared to be photocopies of a November 2000 newspaper front page erroneously proclaiming Al Gore the victor in that year’s presidential race — only to later delete them after the newspaper issued a statement clarifying that it never ran such a front page.

The campaign spokesman, Tim Murtaugh, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Washington Post on Sunday afternoon.

Murtaugh’s original tweet, posted Sunday morning, featured two images — one of the “PRESIDENT GORE” front page, ostensibly from the Nov. 8, 2000, edition of the Washington Times, and another showing walls and cabinets in the Trump campaign’s Virginia headquarters covered in the front page.

“Greeting staff at @TeamTrump HQ this morning, a reminder that the media doesn’t select the President,” Murtaugh tweeted.

Hours later, the Washington Times responded in a tweet.

“Those photos have been doctored. The Washington Times never ran a ‘President Gore’ headline,” the newspaper tweeted Sunday afternoon. “We also wish to add that Mr. Murtaugh has been officially notified via email about this error.”

President Trump and his allies have frequently derided news outlets as “fake news.” In the aftermath of Joe Biden’s victory, they have ramped up their criticism, chastising news outlets for playing their traditional role of projecting a winner.

“Since when does the Lamestream Media call who our next president will be?” Trump tweeted Sunday afternoon while at his Virginia golf course. “We have all learned a lot in the last two weeks!”

The media calls play no official role in the nation’s transfer of power; it is ultimately up to the states to certify their voting results before the electoral college meets in December.

8:37 p.m.
Link copied
link

Democrats projected to keep control of the House

House Democrats are projected to hold on to another two years in the majority, though with a slimmer margin than the one they had after 2018.

The party lost seats and fell short of bullish predictions that it would grow its majority by making gains in Trump territory. Several Democratic incumbents lost their seats, including in conservative-leaning areas in South Carolina, Iowa and New Mexico.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is set to continue in her role, presiding over a smaller majority. On Election Day, she had mentioned on a call with reporters that Democratic strategists predicted picking up five to 15 seats. Centrist House Democrats lambasted their liberal colleagues on a private conference call Thursday, blaming far-left views for costing the party seats.

As of Sunday just after 3 p.m., 218 Democrats and 200 Republicans were projected to win their elections, according to Edison Research.

8:04 p.m.
Link copied
link

Countering liberal critics, Biden campaign says former vice president ran on ‘an incredibly progressive’ agenda

Biden aides on Sunday pushed back against liberal critics, arguing that the president-elect ran on an “incredibly progressive” agenda.

On NBC News’s “Meet the Press,” Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield was asked to respond to a New York Times interview in which Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) had said that “the history of the [Democratic Party] tends to be that we get really excited about the grassroots to get elected, and then those communities are promptly abandoned right after an election.”

“I think that Vice President Biden campaigned on an incredibly progressive and aggressive agenda,” Bedingfield said Sunday. “Take a look, for example, at his climate plan. It’s the boldest, biggest climate plan that’s ever been put forward by, you know, by a nominee running for president and now a president-elect. He’s going to make good on those commitments."

Ocasio-Cortez, for her part, was asked on CNN’s “State of the Union” about another part of the New York Times interview in which she said that she almost didn’t run for reelection because of what she described as a lack of support within her own party and some Democratic lawmakers “thinking you’re the enemy.”

“Do you really think other Democrats see you as the enemy?” host Jake Tapper asked. “Do you think Joe Biden sees you that way?”

“I don’t believe President Biden sees me that way,” Ocasio-Cortez replied. “And I believe that that’s actually one of the reasons why he won election. There’s a marked difference between 2020 and 2016 in how the Democratic Party was able to unify, to Joe Biden’s credit, before the election and get everyone on the same page to make sure that we vote Donald Trump out of office.”

She added, however, that “there are, at least in the House caucus, very deep divisions within the party,” and she urged Democrats to “come together and not allow Republican narratives to tear us apart.”

7:38 p.m.
Link copied
link

U.S. allies celebrate Biden win, hope for more cooperative relations

Messages of congratulations for President-elect Joe Biden rolled in from around the world Sunday as allies and adversaries of the United States accepted that the country would have a new leader despite the lack of any sign from Trump that he planned to concede.

The messages to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala D. Harris on Sunday followed victory speeches Saturday night in which the Democrats emphasized a more inclusive and less combative approach to U.S. leadership.

U.S. allies stressed the need to rebuild ties and multilateral cooperation after President Trump’s “America First” approach upended decades of U.S. foreign policy. For traditional allies who endured sharp criticism, unpredictable behavior and new tariffs under Trump, the election of Biden signaled a return to normalcy.

6:23 p.m.
Link copied
link

Trump will return to a business facing struggling hotels, looming loan payments and two state investigations

When Trump leaves office next year, he will return to a business that is facing significant financial and legal difficulties.

Some of Trump’s best-known properties have struggled since he took office, according to records obtained by The Washington Post, as his divisive political rhetoric drove away the big-spending urban customers and nonpolitical conferences his businesses relied upon.

But this year, the coronavirus pandemic added new pain. The pandemic has decimated the hospitality business, forcing layoffs at several Trump properties and shuttering his hotel in Vancouver, B.C. (Four other Trump hotels have closed since he was elected in 2016.)

Trump is facing more than $400 million in loan payments in the next four years. Some of the loans are on properties — including Trump’s Doral resort in Miami and his hotel in Washington — that are already losing money, according to reporting in the New York Times. After he leaves office, Trump could lose some of his power to direct government spending to his properties. But he could also embrace new sources of revenue — perhaps a return to television, where his work on NBC’s “The Apprentice” once provided millions in cash.

In addition, Trump is facing investigations of his company’s past financial practices, by the New York attorney general and the Manhattan district attorney. Investigators have not produced any evidence of wrongdoing.

Trump still owns his businesses. But for the duration of his presidency he has said he has given day-to-day control to his sons Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr. On Sunday, the Trump Organization did not respond to questions about its plans after Trump leaves office.

5:57 p.m.
Link copied
link

George W. Bush congratulates Biden and Harris, says voters ‘have spoken’

Former president George W. Bush said Sunday that he called Biden and Harris to congratulate them on their win and, in a statement, declared that the voters “have spoken” while also voicing support for Trump’s legal right to pursue recounts in close battleground states.

Bush, the 43rd U.S. president, is the latest former occupant of the Oval Office to congratulate Biden and Harris. Former presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter, all Democrats, also have congratulated the president- and vice president-elect.

In his statement Sunday, Bush said he had just spoken with Biden and “thanked him for the patriotic message he delivered last night.”

“I also called Kamala Harris to congratulate her on her historic election to the vice presidency,” Bush said. “Though we have political differences, I know Joe Biden to be a good man, who has won his opportunity to lead and unify our country. The President-elect reiterated that while he ran as a Democrat, he will govern for all Americans. I offered him the same thing I offered Presidents Trump and Obama: my prayers for his success, and my pledge to help in any way I can.”

Bush, who has largely receded from the national political stage since leaving office in 2009, also congratulated Trump and his supporters “on a hard-fought campaign.”

“He earned the votes of more than 70 million Americans — an extraordinary political achievement,” the former president said. “They have spoken, and their voices will continue to be heard through elected Republicans at every level of government.”

In what appeared to be a rebuke of Trump’s baseless claims of widespread voter fraud, Bush said that the high turnout this year can be interpreted as “a positive sign of the health of our democracy” and that “no matter how you voted, your vote counted.”

But Bush — who himself became president after the Supreme Court ruled to settle a recount dispute in Florida — also affirmed Trump’s right to seek legal redress.

“President Trump has the right to request recounts and pursue legal challenges, and any unresolved issues will be properly adjudicated,” Bush added. “The American people can have confidence that this election was fundamentally fair, its integrity will be upheld, and its outcome is clear.”

He called for all Americans to unite “for the sake of our families and neighbors, and for our nation and its future,” and to “join us in wishing our next President and Vice President well as they prepare to take up their important duties.”

5:20 p.m.
Link copied
link

How Georgia became a swing state for the first time in decades

If Biden’s razor-thin lead in Georgia holds, 2020 will become the first year since 1992 that a Democrat wins the state. Georgia’s reemergence as a battleground marks a major shift in its political landscape that would have seemed almost inconceivable even four years ago.

Biden leads Trump by about 10,000 votes out of 5 million cast, and Georgia state officials said Friday that such a narrow margin makes a recount all but certain.

Yet even if a recount does reverse the result, the state has returned to the ranks of the competitive, its leftward shift propelled by a coalition of voters very unlike the one that helped Bill Clinton win the state in 1992.