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tv   The Electoral College Vote CNN Special Coverage  CNN  December 14, 2020 10:00am-11:00am PST

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over the top. no drama about the outcome. not trying to create drama about the outcome. let's remind people of the stakes, why all the states matter. every count matters. some states were more critical to joe biden's big victory. in the last hour, pennsylvania 20, georgia 16, finishing the process in arizona. 11 more there. these are states joe biden flipped, carried by donald trump in 2016. commonwealth of pennsylvania, state of georgia are critical not only to the victory, central to the challenges by president trump, by his allies, thrown out in courts, thrown out by election officials, thrown out looking at recounts three times in georgia. so 20 here, 16 here, just in history books, not only are pennsylvania and georgia critical to president-elect biden's win, they were critical to the biggest fraud, the
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president's complaints there was fraud. he has proven none in the venues he had opportunity to do so. that was noon hour on the east coast. now moving to the 1:00 hour in the east. six states, 43 more electoral votes to be counted, and some significance this hour, including state of wisconsin. absolutely key to president trump in 2016. pennsylvania, michigan, wisconsin. president trump flipped the blue wall four years ago there. ten more into joe biden. another of the flips for joe biden. michigan coming later in the day. pennsylvania, georgia, michigan, wisconsin, five big flips that give joe biden his victory. wolf, looking at this hour, beginning of the campaign, trump campaign said we are making a play in minnesota. trump campaign said we're making a play in new mexico, didn't happen. this is a more traditional map back to the 1990s, early 2000s, wisconsin, state supreme court today again saying go away to
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lawsuits trying to challenge this. so the allegations are pushed into the rearview mirror as we reaffirm democracy and the basic math of the election. no doubt where the outcome will be the end of the day. last hour, this hour, building blocks of joe biden's victory being reinforced as electors cast ballots. >> third time in the state of wisconsin they told the president and supporters go away, not happening. the legitimacy of the vote is there. stand by, want to go back to jake. >> today is another sign of finality in the 2020 race with president trump on the heels of dozens of legal losses. let's check in with our correspondents. ra adriana broad is there.
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>> the last 30 minutes or so, wisconsin supreme court ruled 4-3 essentially throwing off the lawsuit brought on by the trump administration looking to overturn election results. focusing on dane and milwaukee counties. heavily democratic counties. it is a big college town, milwaukee county heavily populated, democratic black and brown voters. short time ago i spoke with one of ten electors. should be starting that process any minute. the election tore told me he received death threats. he heard from people asking him to become a fearless elector. they'll be escorted by capitol police, will enter through a secret room because of the security threats.
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wolf? >> i'll pick it up. let me go to jeff zeleny covering the biden transition in wilmington, delaware. jeff? >> jake, president-elect biden is watching all of this unfold i am told after he received his classified daily briefing this morning, he is preparing to be president as he has been doing since the 7th of november when he delivered the first victory speech in wilmington. he will deliver another one this evening i am told. so much else is going on. he is doing a variety of things today, also keeping an eye on vaccine rollout and vaccine distribution here. the question hanging over all of this, when is he going to get the vaccination. he has long said when it is deemed safe, when dr. anthony fauci says it is safe, he will get it. jake, that could come as soon as this week. his advisers are saying look, they're waiting to see when that
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will happen. certainly could happen as early as this week. this evening, we are told the president-elect is preparing to give a prime time address. he is going to talk optimistically about the way forward because of the vaccine we are told. he is also going to set this day in motion as history. he has long talked about bridging the divide in this country. no question, his job is harder than it appeared in wilmington on the night of november 7th when he did indeed declare victory and give that speech. he has seen partisan divisions. he is delivering that speech tonight in optimistic tone about the country is about to turn a corner here. we are told he is watching this unfold, even as he picks other members of the cabinet. he has slightly more than half picked. more are expected later this week. >> jeff zeleny by the banks of the beautiful christina river in wilmington, delaware. and wolf, as jeff noted, it will be very complicated for president-elect biden, trying to bridge a divide when a majority
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of house republicans are willing to disenfranchise voters in four states because their guy didn't win. >> hard to believe what happened. the u.s. supreme court clearly made it obvious they have no standing whatsoever, and the country is moving on. want to go to virginia and rhode island, members of the electoral college just formally voted. let's watch. >> glad to announce and proud to announce that 13 votes have been cast for the honorable joseph r biden of the state of delaware for president of the united states. no other person received a vote. >> that was the commonwealth of virginia. 13 electoral votes going to biden. let's check in on rhode island and four electors. >> mr. president, i have sorted and counted the ballots and announce that there are four votes for joseph r. biden of
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delaware for president of the united states. >> electors, you heard the report of the secretary of state who sorted and counted the ballots. there are four votes for joseph r. biden. >> check in in wisconsin, they're voting on their ten electoral votes. let's listen in. they're handing votes over. wisconsin as you correctly point out was a key battleground state that trump won four years ago and lost this time around. >> one of the so-called blue wall states, wolf.
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if you look at the entire map, joe biden at the end of the day has 306 electoral votes, 20 here, 10 in michigan and wisconsin, that's 50. if you bring it in now to go into the state of wisconsin where we look at this, think of this, ten electoral votes are essential to the trump victory, surprise victory back in 2016. again, this is reaffirmation. we have no drama about the outcome. reminds us it was a great day in democracy four years ago too. i know democrats didn't vote for donald trump, weren't happy president trump won, but the system is the system. it has a rules and process, ritual like we are watching today. four years ago, the state was red if you go back in time. this was key to the trump victory. pennsylvania, michigan, wisconsin, arizona, as they count votes. those are big flips. coming to 2020, this is the
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great irony, not strong enough word, president trump celebrated getting these four years ago, joe biden gets them this time. absolute affirmation of his campaign. what did he say at the outset? lot of doubts, he said i can flip pennsylvania, michigan, wisconsin back. you watched this play out, wolf, he will get the ten electoral votes in wisconsin. that's what he promised at the beginning. that's why he is going to be president-elect at the end of the day. >> we watching it unfold live, what's going on in wisconsin now. the governor is going to be reading the votes, ten electoral votes in wisconsin right now. as we wait the official word in wisconsin, david chalian is joining us. wisconsin turned out to be critical four years ago and critical this time as well. >> yeah, critical and close. 20,000 votes or so, joe biden won by.
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electoral votes are critical to getting joe biden to the 306. also, wolf, reminded looking at governor evers presiding over this. wisconsin all year long has sort of been central to the pandemic election year voting. i don't know if you remember in the primary season they had to change the date of the wisconsin primary and we saw people in line waiting to participate, socially distanced in the primary season. we then remember that joe biden's democratic convention was supposed to take place in milwaukee. it ended up going entirely virtual. joe biden addressing the country during his convention from delaware, not milwaukee, because of the pandemic. and now the critical battleground state is completing the process, delivering ten electoral votes to joe biden and kamala harris, one of five states that flipped from red to blue in this election season, compared to 2016. as he was just saying, this was
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the building block for donald trump becoming president. joe biden said from the beginning of the strategy he had t restore the blue wall, pennsylvania, michigan, wisconsin, and he did so. the easiest, most direct path for joe biden to win the white house was to restore and rebuild what had been traditionally democratic states in presidential contests and that is precisely what he did. then he added sun belt states of arizona and georgia to his total which may have implications changing the country's electoral map going forward. certainly biden created a coalition that depended on older voters, white college educated voters, getting folks in the suburbs, critical suburbs of wisconsin, around milwaukee, out to vote for him and upend what donald trump was able to put together four years ago. you're seeing the culmination of that now on the screen.
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>> interesting, david, that not only the u.s. supreme court here in washington, d.c. but supreme court, state supreme courts in several key battleground states rejected what president trump is trying to do together with his supporters, so-called legal team out there. they keep saying no, no. more than 50 times, various courts, local, state, and the u.s. supreme court ruled against them time after time after time. david, the president continues to refuse to accept reality. >> including in wisconsin this morning. there was yet another court ruling as you said swatting away the notion. wolf, you're making such an important point and it is why showing this, exposing bringing sunlight and daylight into the process is so important because the courts had their role. they weighed in. we heard a lot of republicans in the last many weeks say all of
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the legal challenges need to have time to be resolved. that process is done now. the supreme court could not have been more clear that the last legal challenge that made its way friday night when we heard from the supreme court was not even allowed in the door, such an absurd attempt at a legal challenge. that process is now over. now the electors are going and casting ballots in all 50 states and actually making joe biden president-elect, kamala harris vice president-elect, and donald trump can continue and his supporters and allies can continue to think there are avenues that simply don't exist but let me be clear, they don't exist. this is that step in the process that shuts down those attempts, some of them without any fact attached to them whatsoever to try and upend what's happening before your eyes. >> wisconsin is obviously a key battleground state that will
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cast its ten electoral votes for joe biden. adrienne broaddus is there in new york. it should be wrapping up soon. >> reporter: it should. wolf, as we look at the images, a different scene compared to four years ago as electors cast ballots four years ago in the 2016 presidential election, there were agitators inside the room at the capitol. many of them shouting out, asking them not to cast their vote for president donald trump. and now you notice ten electors are spread out. not only are they maintaining social distance, they're making sure they're safe inside. security had to make sure they were safe outside. at least three of them that are black americans were threatened,
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according to kareem pennybaker. he said he received death threats. some of the other electors, governor tony everies, chair of the national democratic party in wisconsin, and the lieutenant governor, baker. you see they're taking their time as they cast their vote, but indeed quite a different scene. when i spoke to -- there's a little laughter inside now, it appears someone may have made a joke that led to some laughter from the electors, but when i spoke to him earlier in the day, he said what's happening surrounding the election, the fact that they have to have security, the fact they have to enter through a secret entrance at the capitol overshadows the historic moment. as we have been pointing out throughout the day, this is a ceremonial procedure that many of us never paid much attention to. of course, history books have,
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but regular everyday folks weren't paying attention to this step in the process. >> yeah, the electors are casting ballots in state after state. watching live pictures coming in from wisconsin now. they're doing the process, the governor is presiding. kristin holmes joins us now. you're looking closely at all of the states. talk about wisconsin. >> yes. here's what we are watching now to give you a little bit of context. essentially the same thing happens in every state. they do an introduction of the electors, they swear them in, then the next thing you see is the audible roll call vote. that's when if there was to be a faithle faithless elector. >> kristin, stand by. they're announcing the vote. let's listen in.
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>> as chairman of the electoral college, governor of the great state of wisconsin, it is my distinct honor to announce that wisconsin casts ten electoral votes for president of the united states of america to joseph r. biden jr., and for vice president of america, ten electoral votes also for kamala d. harris. >> there it is. it is official. you hear the governor of wisconsin. tony evers, making the announcement that ten electoral votes are going to biden and harris. it is very, very significant moment there. let's check in. north carolina, a state
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president donald trump carried, they just voted. >> the electoral votes of the state of north carolina have been cast on this 14th day of december, 2020, by the 15 north carolina republican electors, and all 15 votes are for donald j. trump for president of the united states. >> that's the 15 electoral votes in north carolina. let's check in in ohio now. they've just made their electoral college votes official. president-elect biden was the first to win the presidency without winning ohio. >> the secretary, i invite you back to the podium to explain the procedure for electors to memorialize their votes.
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>> so there you have ohio and its 18 electoral votes going for trump. in kentucky they finished voting as well, commonwealth of kentucky has 8 electoral votes. watch this. >> the electors for commonwealth of kentucky cast 8 electoral votes for donald trump for president of the united states and 8 electoral votes for michael r. pence for vice president of the united states. thank you all for attending today. this concludes our ceremony. chief justice, please leave the -- >> you have kentucky, several other states moving along relatively quickly, jake, we are watching it all unfold. it is not until 5:00 p.m. eastern hour when california will cast its electoral votes, then it will all be official. biden and harris will have over 270. >> and we are not watching
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because we anticipate there won't be any surprises. we believe the electors will vote the way the voters wanted them to, which is to say that president-elect biden won. we are watching because never before in modern history has any u.s. president so attacked the foundations of democracy as is going on right now. there's a debate, dana, abby, about how fragile is our democracy. i happen to, and this is an opinion, i happen to believe our democracy is more fragile than today would suggest, that if 25 election officials and judges out there had less character and were more easily cowed by nasty tweets from the president, who knows where we would be. but thankfully we have officials like since fired official from department of homeland security, chris krebs, and secretary of state and governor of georgia,
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two conservative republicans, brian kemp, brad raffensperger, philadelphia city commissioner, al schmidt, canvassing board members in michigan, and this morning, 4-3 decision in wisconsin supreme court. people rising to the challenge. but 25 people with a little less character, who knows what happens. >> you're right. institutionally, judges on a state and federal level are supposed to be governed by the constitution, by what is right when it comes to evidence that is presented to them and not by the political whims of their constituents. which is why it was set up this way. watching some of these states, it is striking that claims of fraud, they're so one sided. not surprising, but i think
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maybe important to say it out loud which is, you know, there were some states early on when we were looking at the votes, it looked like joe biden could win and it ended up that donald trump took them. and you're not seeing or hearing joe biden claim fraud in a place like ohio, you're not seeing or hearing him claim fraud in other states that donald trump ended up winning, and it is because he is respecting the process. just like every republican candidate in recent memory has done beforehand. i think it is worth noting that is happening. easy to do that when you're going to win over 300 electoral votes, but he didn't have to. he is doing it because he sees reality in front of him. >> such a good point. it just reveals the logical fallacy of the conspiracy theory that the president in his tweet
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as he was spiraling about the issue said in every swing state there was rampant fraud, all kinds of crazy things he said happened in every swing state. in some of those swing states, he won. he won in the state of florida, in north carolina, saw north carolina certify the electoral college for president trump, but he is claiming it is only in swing states where joe biden won where all these crazy conspiracies happened. it makes absolutely no sense because if there were problems of this magnitude, you would not only see them appearing for one person, and by the way, as we discussed many times, democrats wanted to rig the election, they would have rigged it so they easily won the senate and easily expanded their joermajorities ie house. that's all part of the complete, again, fantasy land. the president and his supporters are living in.
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i think what we are seeing here, jake, you said earlier, we're not expecting surprises. more than half of the states, yes, they are bound by law to vote the way their state went. some cases, there are no penalties for not doing that. what is notable so far is we haven't seen people deviating from the state vote. that's notable, commendable. as you said, this is a fragile situation i think we're in. only relies on people doing the right thing. so far in all of the states they've done the right thing. there have been no surprises. we expect it to be like that the rest of the day. >> right now, looking at images, i assume a man dressed as uncle sam, not actually uncle sam in alabama. i assume he is about to award the electoral votes in the state
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of alabama to president trump, outgoing president trump. pennsylvania attorney general josh shapiro has been fending off many trump campaign and other republican legal efforts in the campaign season. he's also one of the electors for commonwealth of pennsylvania, joins me live from harrisburg. josh, before i ask you about today's process, i want some clarification. republicans are complaining and the trump campaign is complaining about the election results in pennsylvania. are any of these republicans such as congressman mike kelly, leading the charge, to disenfranchise voters of pennsylvania and give the electors to trump, kelly or any of the statewide officials, i believe a couple of republicans won statewide races in pennsylvania a few weeks ago as
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well, are any of them saying obviously this election was fraudulent and that means me too, my race too that i won, therefore we should have the whole, all of the election do over or are they just saying there was only one issue and that has to do with one person on the slate that day, but all of the other elections were fine. >> jake, i don't think you can apply any logic or any rationality to anything congressman kelly or his cohort are saying. they claim there's fraud. there's been no fraud, no production of any evidence of fraud. it is why donald trump, his campaign and his enablers lost at every single turn in courts through pennsylvania, through state courts, federal courts, and ultimately in the united states supreme court a couple days ago. >> josh, i hate to correct an
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attorney general but the lieutenant governor of pennsylvania, a fellow democrat, he says there were two instances of fraud in pennsylvania, both of them were republicans committing voter fraud in order to vote for president trump. >> well, i have seen john fedderman's points on that, he makes a good point. these individuals were attempting to commit voter fraud. in terms of widespread voter fraud that donald trump keeps tweeting about, lying about, enablers like mike kelly attempt to amplify, there's absolutely no evidence of that. jake, let me be clear, as chief law enforcement officer, if i saw any widespread voter fraud like the kind the president keeps tweeting about, i would prosecute it as i have done in the past. this was a safe and secure election, period. >> the commonwealth of pennsylvania just cast its electoral votes for president-elect biden and vice
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president-elect kamala harris. usually this is a moment without television coverage, without a lot of fanfare. did it feel differently? how did it feel to cast your vote? >> you know, jake, this was my third time serving as an elec r elector. it felt like the explanation point on some of the ridiculous, baseless, meritless claims the president put forth. this was the exclamation point clearly demonstrating yet again that joe biden will be the next president of the united states. when i had the honor of walking up on the stage and casting my ballot in a box that was designed and used by ben franklin, it was an honor. i was overcome with emotion. it was really a point of pride for me to be able to reflect the will of the people of pennsylvania, not just in many
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lawsuits we fended off from donald trump and his enablers, but through the two ballots i put in the box today, one for joseph r. biden jr. and one for kamala d. harris. >> the pennsylvania republican party says its electors also met today as a result of the trump campaign, did it to cast votes to preserve possible future lawsuits. i don't really understand the legal strategy here but they're doing this in other states as well, this alternate universe. is there anything else the president's legal team could do in court to change the result of the election? are you confident the electoral votes that you and fellow democrats cast today will be accepted by the house of representatives? >> yeah, jake. again, respectfully i want to caution you to apply logical thinking to the ridiculous charade the republicans are going through i guess here
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somewhere in harrisburg. they have absolutely no authority to effect the outcome of the electoral college, no legislator here in pennsylvania has any authority. i have been stating that as a point of legal fact for months. the 20 electoral votes cast today for joe biden and kamala harris will stand and they'll be sworn in as the president and vice president january 20th, period, end of sentence. if the enablers want to continue to suck up to the sitting president of the united states to score points, i suppose they can do it, but it will have absolutely no legal effect or bearing on the outcome. >> i agree with the prediction. let me ask you this hypothetical. majority 126 republicans in the house of representatives signed on to the base the some would call garbage brief filed by the attorney general of texas.
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it was found that they didn't have standing, but beyond that they were seeking to disenfranchise voters of four states, including the commonwealth of pennsylvania. this fight might continue in the house. the house is controlled by democrats. speaker pelosi will be speaker by then, but if kevin mccarthy were the speaker, if the republicans controlled the house, do you think president trump and the republican party would try to steal the election on the floor of the house? would that concern you? >> yeah. it does concern me, jake. you're correct to point out that obviously the house of representatives under speaker pelosi will not entertain this charade. but you raise two broader questions. number one, the sickness that exists within the republican party today and i think they have to do some serious soul searching about the direction they're going, are they going to continue to be trump's enablers
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and sick fants or go back to the conservative principles they claim they espouse for many years. second, i think you race an important point in the hypothetical, of course, whether or not reform is needed in the electoral college, ought to move to national popular vote. that's something once the dust settles here, once soon to be president biden is inaugurated, we need to have a conversation whether it is time to reform the electoral college process. >> thank you so much. appreciate the time today. wolf? >> thanks very much. we are watching all of this unfold. this is a historic moment here in the united states. it is about to become official by the electoral college. no great surprise, joe biden the winner, donald trump the loser. we continue special coverage after this.
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welcome back to the cnn special event, electoral college votes. following the democratic process as electors in states across the country formally select the president. minutes ago, electors in arizona cast 11 electoral votes for
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president-elect joe biden and vice president-elect kamala harris. let's go to dana bash now, she has a special guest. >> thanks, wolf. joining me on the phone, arizona secretary of state katie hobbs. thank you so much for joining us. first, you just heard wolf say that arizona cast its electoral votes for president-elect joe biden. take us inside the room. what happened there? >> so we convened the 11 electors for arizona, democratic electors. we had a swearing in ceremony where they took an oath of office, then they all signed all of the certificates that we have to get to the places they need to go. it was momentous to be part of that, no matter who the electors were. it was such a -- this is such a defining process in our american electoral system and it was really amazing to be part of.
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>> and a big deal politically because aside from 1996, arizona has not gone for a democrat since 1948. this was a big pickup for the democrats. i know that's your party. i have to ask about the fact that electors in states across the country including yours faced some threats against, violent threats i should say. you held the vote in an undisclosed location. is that why that was necessary? >> yes, absolutely. we have seen increasingly escalating rhetoric and threats throughout the last week. decided to move this for everybody, safety of everyone involved. >> how did that come to pass? at what point did you say this really fundamental democratic process has become so dangerous
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we need to protect the electors who are casting votes today. >> i mean, it is unfortunate. we have been working with states, law enforcement and the governor's office and this was done as a collaborative recommendation in terms of making it as safe as possible. >> president trump has been attacking your republican governor, trying to get him to overturn the state's results. what does this mean for the process generally speaking as the secretary of state there? >> well, i've been saying since the election that the rhetoric, the undermining of the integrity of the election dangerous to our democracy. i think the impact is going to be far reaching, beyond this election in terms of the public faith in the institutions of our democracy and unless we have
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leaders that are focused on this is the democratic process, how it works in our country, working on unifying, rebuilding, i think there's permanent damage that's been done to our election systems and our country. >> hopefully the faith can be restored and we're sorry you had to go to an undisclosed location to do something that as i believe alex stewart said earlier, electors should get a ticker tape parade, not threats. thank you very much. wolf, back to you. >> hard to believe these threats are happening in the united states of america. in in at thkansas, watch this. >> president donald j. trump, republican, received all six electoral votes. we commence voting for vice
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president. >> south dakota's electors, three of them also just cast ballots. watch this voting in south dakota. >> we have three votes for mike pence for vice president of the united states and three votes for donald trump for president of the united states. i think that's what remains is signing the certificates. we'll do that at this time. >> in maryland, members of the electoral college cast their ten electoral votes for president-elect joe biden and vice president-elect kamala harris, all of this unfolding on this historic day. erin, back to you. >> president of maryland electors proudly cast my vote for president-elect joe biden. electors, please state your name and your vote for the record.
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beginning with the secretary. >> well, want to point out, that was the ten electoral votes in the state of maryland going for biden and harris. back to erin burnett. >> wolf, thank you. yes, we were watching the great state of maryland, my home state. let me ask you, you heard katie hobbs tell dana from arizona she worries there's been permanent damage done to the system. today you have another opportunity for many republicans in congress, right, who won't acknowledge the president-elect as the president-elect, who signed on to the texas lawsuit that the supreme court unanimously struck down last week. they have a chance today to do the right thing, particularly leadership, right, mcconnell, mccarthy. are we going to see it? >> i don't think so, certainly not from some of donald trump's biggest supporters, but i think this will become a much bigger problem for the republican party as we head into the next year. if you look at the likes of jeff
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duncan, lieutenant governor, or brian kemp, governor from georgia, these two gentlemen are very, very conservative lawmakers. they're trumpers. they have been supportive of him, they've done everything politically for him except break the law. you look at those two and you look at the likes of mitt romney, ben sasse here in washington, you're going to see a civil war in the republican party next year. you'll see people try to steal it back from those who have really altered it and distorted the republican party the last couple of years. >> when you talk about people talking about stealing, let me show you a tweet from hillary clinton, talking about reform she wants in the process. wonder if now is the time. she was an elector in state of new york, and tweets with that picture i believe we should abolish the electoral college, select our president by winner of the popular vote, same as every other office. while it exists, proud to cast my vote for joe biden and kamala
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harris. is now the time to say that? >> i mean, maybe not. but it is a position that a lot of democrats hold for obvious reasons which is democrats keep winning elections with more votes and not always winning the electoral college. and we could have another time to talk through the reasons why it probably is a good idea to get rid of the electoral college, but right now on the day that we are having this experience of actually seeing the votes being counted, i think that it is best to just focus on that and the real problem is that donald trump and his enablers in congress have led a large segment of the population to believe that our elections are not trustworthy, and that democrats are out to steal elections, and that's really the fundamental problem that we're going to be dealing with for quite some time. >> alex, what about the timing
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of it, impact it may have on some of the republicans that need to now step up and do the right thing and acknowledge joe biden as the president-elect. >> it should be a matter of time before certainly that happens. i think it is important to remember one of the key purposes of having the electoral college is to give smaller states equal voice in the process and also another fundamental part of that, i was deputy secretary of state in arkansas. one of the key points of the electoral college is to allow each state to run their own election and no other state no matter how big, how small, how red, how blue can second guess how each state conducts their election. i think it is important to do that for the voice of the smaller states. i don't see that changing. i'm really proud of elected officials, republican elected officials who like me wanted president trump to win but did not, he did not win and have accepted that. they certified results like in my home state of georgia, they certified results, let the voice
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be heard, and they're looking to the next most important thing. we talked a lot about the electoral college, it is important for republicans to turn their efforts on not overturning joe biden's presidency, making sure the fire wall stays in place in the state of georgia, make sure we get those two senate candidates elected there. the electoral college process i think has a valid purpose and i don't see it going away. >> all of you, thank you very much. back to you, wolf. >> thank you. more states will make the electoral votes official in moments. we're also following major coronavirus news here in the united states. some of the first vaccines in the united states are being administered. we'll update you on that. stay with us. we're all finding ways to keep moving.
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right now, the u.s. is nearing a very, very grim milestone. almost 300,000 coronavirus deaths here in the united states. right now the death toll is 299,737. in the meantime, there is some hope. the university of michigan hospital is preparing to inject its first round of coronavirus vaccines. that's where cnn's sara sidner is joining us right now. walk us through exactly what is going on. >> reporter: look, at 8:45 this morning here at the university of michigan medical center, we saw the vials come in, a package come in right on time. now what you are looking at, you are looking at sara, also a great name. she's going back and forth and going through what they call reconstitute the actual
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inobjection lace. you'll see it there. she is taking very good care to make sure that everything is sanitized, but basically this comes in frozen. as you know, it's like negative 7 degrees celsius. they take it out of dry ice, put it in a super-cold refrigerator. it has to warm up a big before it's mixed in with a bit of saline, and then it's put into the arms of those who are on the front lines. as we understand it, the next five people to get this, the first people here, have been taking care of covid patients. she is going to be mixing these two -- the saline and the actual vaccine together, to make it's it's easy, goes into your arm, no big deal. for so long we've been watching this is amazing heroes every single day to make sure they
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take care of these patients. they also have exhausted themselves, because they have to think about their own health and their family's health every single day, every time they come in contact with someone with covid. this is the beginning of the end. this is the pfizer vaccine, and it will be used in just a bit and put into the arms of those on the frontlines fighting this virus. it's something folks were able to cheer about. it's been a long time since i've heard cheering. >> it certainly is. we're watching this closely, a really important moment unfolding. we're also standing by for another big hour of the electoral college situation. we'll have live coverage. stay with us. service at the ready. at mercedes-benz, it's not just a job, it's our mission. from our expert technicians armed with state of the art tools and technology, to genuine parts made for the perfect fit. whether it's our place... ...or yours.
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♪ welcome to our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer in the cnn election center. right now american democracy is in action, and we're watching it unfold very, very dramatically. members of the electoral college are gathering across the united states to formally select the winner of the 2020 presidential
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election. today president-elect joe biden will reach the key threshold of 270 electoral votes. president donald trump has been pressuring states to ignore the will of american voters. any moment now, new results will come in, and we'll bring it to you live. electors will cast ballots in colorado, district of columbia, maine, michigan, florida, idaho, north dakota, utah, west virginia and wyoming. joe biden now how 156 electors who voted for him, 106 for president trump. let's walk over to the magic wall. john king is watching all of this for us. i want to look ahead a bit. what we can expect this hour and in the next few hours as history unfolds. >> a couple interests states as we go through this ritual. it's in the constitution, often


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