In his first address since election night, Joe Biden said he remains confident he will be the next U.S. president. He went on to plead for an end to “partisan warfare” and to reassure Americans that he has already begun work on plans to curb the spread of the coronavirus which has killed 240,000 Americans, and economically devastated millions more.
Speaking to supporters in Wilmington, Delaware on Friday, Biden projected a decisive victory for himself and vice-presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris.
“The numbers tell us a clear and convincing story, we’re going to win this race,” he said.
“We’re on track to over 300 electoral college votes, and look at the national numbers, we’re going to win this race with a clear majority of the nation behind us.”
He pointed to his ticket taking the lead over incumbent Donald Trump in four states where the race has yet to be called — Georgia, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and Nevada. Wins in Arizona and Georgia would flip those states for the Democrats for the first time in 24 and 28 years respectively.
He urged patience while votes are counted.
“I know watching these vote tallies on TV moves very slow, and as slow as it goes it can be numbing. But never forget, the tallies aren’t just numbers, they represent votes and voters, men and women who exercised their fundamental right to have their voice heard, and what’s becoming clear each hour is that a record number of Americans of all races, faiths, religions, chose change over more of the same. They’ve given us a mandate for action on COVID, the economy, climate change, systemic racism,” he said.
Appearing to address Trump’s ongoing efforts to stop the count, Biden said all votes will be counted.
“Democracy works. Your vote will be counted. I don’t care how hard people try to stop it, I will not let it happen. The people will be heard,” he said.
Over 74 million people had cast ballots for Biden as of Friday night.
“That’s more than any presidential ticket has ever gotten in the history of the United States of America,” Biden said, adding he was leading Trump by 4 million votes.
“The people spoke and they spoke loudly for our ticket, but while we’re waiting for the final results I want people to know we’re not waiting to get the work done.”
According to Biden, he and Harris have been meeting with public health experts to work on a plan to contain COVID-19. The U.S. set a record earlier Friday for new infections with 125,000 people testing positive.
“Daily cases are skyrocketing it is now believed that we could see as many as 200,000 cases in a single day. The death toll is approaching 240,000 lives lost to this virus. That’s 240,000 empty chairs at kitchen tables, and dining room tables all across America. We’ll never be able to measure all that pain and the loss, the suffering that so many families have experienced,” he said.
“On day one we’re going to put our plan to control this virus into action. We can’t save any of the lives lost but we can save a lot of lives in the months ahead.”
Biden ended by appealing to the nation to “get the vitriol out of politics” and pledged to unify the deeply divided country.
“We have to remember the purpose of our politics isn’t total, unrelenting, unending warfare. No. The purpose of our politics, the work of the nation, isn’t to fan the flames of conflict but to solve problems, to guarantee justice, to give everybody a fair shot, and to improve the lives of our people. We may be opponents — but we’re not enemies,” he said.
“We have to put the anger and the demonization behind us. It’s time for us to come together as a nation and to heal. My responsibility as president will be to represent the whole nation and I want you to know that I’ll work as hard for those who voted against me as those who voted for me. That’s the job, that’s the job.”