During the first 2020 presidential debate in September, Joe Biden pledged that he would not declare victory in the election until the results were "independently certified." Last week, Biden declared victory in the presidential election despite the results not yet being independently certified.
On Sept. 29 during the first of two presidential debates, moderator Chris Wallace asked Biden a question about not rushing to declare victory while the ballots were still being counted.
The "Fox News Sunday" host asked Biden, "Will you urge your supporters to stay calm while the vote is counted? And will you pledge not to declare victory until the election is independently certified?"
Biden answered without doubt, "Yes."
The former vice president then acknowledged that counting this year's election results would take longer than typical election years.
"Here's the deal: We count the ballots," Biden stated. "As you pointed out, some of these ballots in some states can't even be opened until Election Day. And if there's thousands of ballots, it's going to take time to do it."
Joe Biden promised he would NOT declare victory until all the votes were counted and the election was independently… https://t.co/Iwo4mvky4H— Trump War Room (@Trump War Room) 1605123911.0
On Saturday, Biden declared victory in the 2020 election, despite the results yet to be independently certified.
"Folks, the people of this nation have spoken they've delivered us a clear victory, a convincing victory," Biden said in his presumed victory speech delivered in Wilmington, Delaware. "A victory for We The People. We've won with the most votes ever cast for a presidential ticket in the history of the nation."
On Monday, Biden proclaimed that "this election is over" as he instructed Americans to wear face masks.
"I will be a president for every American," Biden said. "This election is over. It's time to put aside the partisanship and the rhetoric that is designed to demonize one another."
President-elect Joe Biden: "This election is over." https://t.co/KDp2Es3G4h— The Hill (@The Hill) 1604942573.0
The certification of election results is typically performed by the state's governor, chief election official, or a board of canvassers. Each state has different deadlines for when the election results must be certified, the latest is Dec. 11 for California.
There is a Dec. 8 deadline for resolving election disputes at the state level.
On Dec. 14, electors will vote by paper ballot for their states, then deliver the certificates by Dec. 23.
On Jan. 6, the House and Senate will hold a joint session to count the electoral votes, and if a candidate has received at least 270 electoral votes, they will be declared the next president.
On Wednesday, the state of Georgia announced there would be a manual hand recount of the presidential election results because Biden's lead is so narrow, a mere 0.3%, which is the same margin that Biden is leading President Donald Trump in Arizona.
The Trump campaign has brought forward numerous allegations of election fraud as well as several lawsuits asserting that there was meddling in the 2020 election, including in Pennsylvania and Michigan.