KEY POINTS

  • Fetterman said Biden has a chance to carry Pennsylvania
  • Biden had more than a 5,000-vote edge over Trump as of 9:30 a.m. EST Friday
  • Pennsylvania’s 20 votes in the Electoral College would put Biden in the White House

Based on trends in the outstanding vote count in Pennsylvania, the state’s lieutenant governor thinks former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will go on to win the state’s votes in the Electoral College.

“We believe just those numbers of outstanding ballots, assuming they perform the way the others have – and we have no reason not to believe that – are going to be favorable to the vice president’s chance to carry Pennsylvania,” Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, a Democrat, told MSNBC.

As of 9:30 a.m. EST, CBS News reported Biden leads U.S. President Donald Trump in the election count by 5,587 votes. There are still more than 163,501 mail-in ballots left to be tallied. The late gains deal a blow to Trump’s chance of winning a second term in office.

No major news outlet has called Pennsylvania for Biden. Reuters finds Biden with 253 secure votes in the Electoral College to Trump’s 214. A candidate needs 270 votes in the Electoral College to declare victory and Pennsylvania has 20 electoral votes.

In a speech from the White House on Thursday, the president claimed he was ahead in Pennsylvania by 700,000 votes.

“I won Pennsylvania by a lot,” he stated.

Trump has claimed, without providing evidence, that there was fraud in the general election. A series of lawsuits filed by the president’s campaign team were overturned by judges in key battleground states such as Michigan, which was projected for a Biden win earlier this week.

Making the rounds on major news outlets Friday morning, Sen. Pat Toomey, a Pennsylvania Republican, was critical of the president’s remarks.

"I saw the president's speech last night and it was very hard to watch,” he told NBC’s “Today” morning program. “The president's allegations of large-scale fraud and theft of the election are just not substantiated."

Speaking on MSNBC, Fetterman said Trump’s challenges were absurd, adding the only issue was with the president’s legal team in the state.

“All these votes were received on or before 8 p.m. on Election Day,” he said. “There’s no way that you can even touch them in a legal manner at this point.”

As with the case in other states where the race is still too close to call, protests have erupted across Pennsylvania as the counting continued into Friday. On Thursday, Philadelphia ABC affiliate WPVI reported two men were arrested for plans to attack the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where ballot counting is underway. Both men were heavily armed and had a cache of weapons inside the vehicle when thwarted by the Philadelphia police.

The Trump campaign is expected to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on a case that challenges the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision to allow the counting of ballots after Election Day. 

Joe Biden, speaking here on November 5, has moved to the cusp of victory in the US presidential election Joe Biden, speaking here on November 5, has moved to the cusp of victory in the US presidential election Photo: AFP / JIM WATSON