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Joe Biden waves to a crowd outside The Queen theater in Wilmington yesterday. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Joe Biden has nearly insurmountable math on his side, as the stunningly close count continued all day.

The state of play: Network morning shows stayed live as long as 1 p.m. ET, with the nation's news machinery poised to resolve Election week.

  • Pennsylvania, where Biden is ahead by just under 15,000 counted votes, could be the ballgame: If he wins there, he's president-elect.
  • NBC's Chuck Todd gave a window into decision-desk thinking when he said on the extended "Today" show, just before 11 a.m., that the network had over 90% confidence Biden would win Pennsylvania — but needed to be at 99.5%.

After multiple decision desks call the race for Biden, expect him and Sen. Kamala Harris to appear and publicly establish themselves as the victors — no matter what President Trump is saying, Axios' Alexi McCammond reports from Biden HQ in Wilmington, Del.

  • The two were expected to speak as soon as 8 p.m. ET tonight.

The event site — a Wilmington parking lot bedecked with American flags — buzzed with microphone checks and Secret Service activity.

  • Harris will introduce Biden, and aides said she'll keep it short — this is Biden's moment, after his third presidential run.
  • Biden is expected to hit familiar themes from his campaign: uniting the country, restoring the soul of the nation and moving past partisanship.

Trump stayed out of sight, with a few tweets. His campaign released a statement in his name that sounded like a concession, although past performance suggests that tone may not last long.

  • "We believe the American people deserve to have full transparency into all vote counting and election certification, and that this is no longer about any single election," Trump said in the statement. "This is about the integrity of our entire election process."
  • "We will pursue this process through every aspect of the law," he concluded. "I will never give up fighting for you and our nation."

The Trump campaign said it's confident the president will ultimately pull out a victory in Arizona, including in Maricopa County, the state's most populous area, AP reported.

  • But he would also need to win most of the other remaining battlegrounds.

Go deeper

Updated Nov 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

GOP Sen. Pat Toomey: Trump has exhausted all plausible legal options

Sen. Pat Toomey during a Senate hearing in May. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) congratulated President-elect Joe Biden on his election win, saying in a statement, "President Trump has exhausted all plausible legal options to challenge the result of the presidential race in Pennsylvania."

Why it matters: Toomey made the announcement hours after a Republican judge in his home state dismissed a Trump campaign lawsuit that sought to block the certification of Pennsylvania's election results.

Nov 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

GOP Sen. Kevin Cramer: Transition should start "tomorrow morning"

Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) said on "Meet the Press" on Sunday that it is past time to "cooperate with the transition" to President-elect Joe Biden, adding that he believes President Trump still has the right to continue fighting in court over election results.

Driving the news: Trump has refused to allow the transition process to begin as he has sought to discredit the election results in swing states across the country — baselessly alleging mass voter fraud.

Murkowski: "It is time to begin the full and formal transition process"

Murkowski leaves the Senate Republicans lunch in September. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) tweeted Sunday, "It is time to begin the full and formal transition process." She called Trump's attempts to overturn President-elect Biden's win "inconsistent with our democratic process."

Why it matters: Only a handful of congressional Republicans have acknowledged Biden as president-elect as Trump and his campaign continue unsuccessful legal challenges in key swing states.

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