Joe Biden was elected 46th President of the United States
This election has shown the importance of independent, fact-based journalism for a functioning democracy. Help us deliver high quality news, data and information.
Show your support
How does the choice work?
The winner of the election is determined through a system called the College of Voters. The 50 states, e.g. Each of Washington DC receives multiple voter college votes, for a total of 538 votes. More populous states receive more college votes than smaller ones.
To win an election, a candidate must win 270 electoral college votes (50% plus one).
In two states – except Maine and Nebraska – in each state, the candidate with the most votes wins all the votes in the state’s electoral college.
Because of these rules, a candidate can win an election without getting the most votes at the national level. This happened in the last election, in which Donald Trump won the majority of the electoral college votes, although several voted for Hillary Clinton in the United States.
How are the results reported?
The election results on this page are reported by the Associated Press (AP). The AP “calls” the winner in a state where it is determined that the final candidate has no way to win. This can happen when 100% of the votes have been counted in a state.
An estimate of the aggregate votes of each state is also provided by the AP. The numbers will be updated during election night as more data on voter turnout becomes available.
Back to top