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To win the presidency, Donald Trump or Joe Biden will need to secure at least 270 votes in the 538-vote Electoral College.
Each state’s number of Electoral College votes is its number of House of Representative members (which is determined by the state’s population) plus its number of senators (each state has two). Washington, D.C., has three electors, for a national total of 538. The 270 needed to clinch is half plus one.
Each state’s Electoral College votes go to the winner of that state’s popular vote, except Nebraska and Maine, which split up their votes — two go to the winner of the state’s popular vote and one each goes to the winner within each congressional district.
The map above shows who has won each state’s electors, as declared by The Associated Press. The news organization calls races based on voting data it has gathered from the states, as well as other information such as demographic data and voting statistics.
“AP does not make projections or name apparent or likely winners,” said David Scott, a deputy managing editor who helps oversee AP’s coverage of elections. “If AP cannot definitively say a candidate has won, we don’t speculate.”
In many presidential elections, the winner is apparent by late on election night. That was not the case in 2020. By midnight Pacific time, the handful of battleground states that will decide the presidency were still too close to call.
Voting has been different this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, with many more people than usual choosing to vote by mail or in person but early. That has affected how fast votes are counted. In some states, the law allowed officials to begin processing those votes early. Other states couldn’t, and some states accept ballots that are postmarked by Election Day but arrive later, so complete results could take longer.
Polling has shown that people who voted early were more likely to support Biden, while people planning to vote on Election Day were more likely to support Trump. That means, depending on which votes are counted first, the candidate appearing to lead based on results announced Tuesday night may not end up being that state’s winner. Read more here about when to expect election results from each state and which direction the results may shift.
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