US votes after divisive, bitter marketing campaign; report turnout

Washington, November 3

Americans were voting in large numbers on Tuesday in one of the most divisive bitter presidential elections in decades in which incumbent Republican Donald Trump is challenged by Democrat Joe Biden.

Amidst a resurgent Covid-19 pandemic, nearly 100 million people have already cast their ballots in early voting, putting the country on course for its highest turnout in a century. Poll experts said that the turnout is going to be the key in the election results. The mail-in ballots could take days or weeks to be counted in some states, meaning a winner might not be declared in the hours after polls close on Tuesday.

There is an estimated four million Indian-American population of which about 2.5 million are potential voters in the November 2020 presidential elections. Over 1.3 million Indian-Americans are voters in key battleground states, including Texas, Michigan, Florida and Pennsylvania.

Large lines were seen and hundreds of people had queued up before polling stations, particularly in the key battleground states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

Trump in the wee hours of Tuesday urged Americans to vote for him. “Vote like your freedom, your livelihood, and our future depends on it… Because they do!” tweeted Trump, who is seeking to avoid becoming the first incumbent President to lose a re-election since George HW Bush in 1992.

Biden also tweeted urging people to vote: “It’s election day. Go vote, America!” National polls continue to show Biden leading Trump, by a comfortable 8 percentage points. US elections, however, are not determined by the national popular vote, but rather in the 538-member Electoral College, with each candidate needing a majority of 270 to win the presidency.

The Covid pandemic was a major topic during the election. The US recorded more cases and more deaths than any other country. — PTI

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