Biden wins Arizona and turns a long Republican foothold

Elected President Joe Biden will win the battlefield of Arizona, Edison Research scheduled for Thursday, and give another blow to President Donald Trump’s fighting efforts to reverse the outcome of the November 3 presidential election.

Biden’s victory in Arizona gives Democrats 290 voting rights in the state Electoral College that decides the winner, more than the 270 needed to claim victory. Biden also wins the popular vote with more than 5.2 million votes, or 3.4 percentage points.

With a few states still counting votes, election math is scary for Trump. The Republican president has repeatedly claimed that the election was intimidated by widespread fraud, with no evidence to support his claims. He would have to drive Biden in at least three battlefield states where Biden currently leads by different margins.

The Trump campaign has filed lawsuits challenging individual states’ voting, although some have already been thrown out by judges. Legal experts have said the disputes have little chance of changing the outcome, and state election officials have said they see no evidence of serious irregularities or fraud.

Audit audits in more than six Arizona counties, including Maricopa County, where a majority of the state’s residents live, found only minor discrepancies, the Secretary of State’s office reported earlier Thursday. The reviews involve hand counts of a random selection of choices.

To date, most Republican officials and lawmakers have publicly supported Trump’s attempts to challenge the election results and refused to recognize Biden as elected president.

But a handful of Republican senators on Thursday urged the Trump administration to let Biden know about intelligence and implicitly acknowledged that he could eventually occupy the White House even if they refused to acknowledge his gain.

The president-elect traditionally receives such briefings from the intelligence service to learn about threats facing the United States before taking office.

“I do not see it as a high-risk proposal. I just think it’s part of the transition. And if he does win in the end, I think they need to be able to hit the ground running,” Senator John Cornyn told reporters.

Other Republican senators also said Biden should have access to classified information meetings, including Lindsey Graham, a vocal Trump supporter, and Ron Johnson, James Lankford and Chuck Grassley.

Principal Kevin McCarthy opposed the idea.

“He’s not president right now. I do not know if he will be president on January 20,” McCarthy said.

Biden remained focused on preparing to rule. The former vice president, who will be America’s second Roman Catholic president after John F. Kennedy in the 1960s, spoke with Pope Francis on Thursday, thanking him for his “blessing and congratulations” and promising to work together on issues such as climate change and poverty, said his transition team.