Newsletter: Today’s Headlines: So close, yet so far apart


In a tight race with Joe Biden and with votes still being counted, President Trump falsely claimed that “we have already won” the election and threatened to go to the Supreme Court.


So Close, Yet So Far Apart

In a year of living with unprecedented uncertainty, the presidential election is holding true to form: It could take days to know the outcome, with millions of votes remaining to be counted, Joe Biden and President Trump each having more than 200 electoral votes and Trump falsely claiming victory and calling on the Supreme Court to “stop a major fraud in our nation” and hand him the presidential election.


Earlier in the evening, Biden had urged patience: “We’re going to have to be patient until the hard work of tallying the votes is finished. And it ain’t over until every vote is counted — every ballot is counted. But we’re feeling good.”

But in an extraordinary 2:30 a.m. appearance at the White House, Trump called the pending outcome “a fraud on the America public” and “embarrassment on our country.”

The prospect of a constitutional crisis is a nightmare scenario many Americans have dreaded. Legal experts expressed skepticism over Trump’s claims.

As the vote counting pushed into Wednesday morning, the political map looked much as it did four years ago. Once more, the contest appeared to narrow to three major industrial states — Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — that delivered the presidency to Trump in 2016 even as he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton.

Both Biden and Trump stood at more than 200 electoral votes; 270 are needed to win the White House. (See the latest on our presidential election results map.)

In short, there wasn’t a massive blue wave as Democrats had hoped. Biden easily won California as part of a West Coast sweep and carried other Democratic strongholds including Minnesota, which Trump targeted after a narrow loss four years ago. Biden also won Arizona, becoming just the second Democratic presidential candidate to carry the state since 1948.

The president once again took Florida — the campaign’s biggest battleground — and prevailed in most of the GOP-leaning Deep South and other Republican bastions. He also won the Republican-tilting states of Ohio and Texas, where Biden made a late play.

Despite widespread fears of election-related violence, the voting Tuesday was mostly peaceful. Total voter turnout is expected to surpass records in many states and perhaps nationwide. Even before the polls opened Tuesday, more than 100 million Americans had cast their ballots in person or by mail.

To ensure every one of those votes is counted, a federal judge ordered the U.S. Postal Service to sweep its facilities for outstanding ballots and rush the delivery of any that were found. Postal Service officials said they lacked the personnel to fully comply.

Here is the latest.

Another Nail-Biter

Democrats had headed into election day favored to win a slight majority in the Senate, but their hopes began to fade as marquee contests stretched into overtime and some of the most vulnerable Republican incumbents remained in contention as the vote counts dragged on.

Sens. Thom Tillis of North Carolina and Susan Collins of Maine, whose defeats had been considered essential building blocks of a new Democratic majority, held narrow leads over their opponents in nearly complete results. If either eked out a win, Democrats’ path to a majority would narrow significantly.

Some other Democratic challengers fell short in contests against durable senior Republican incumbents. Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina fended off Democrat Jaime Harrison and Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky easily beat Democrat Amy McGrath.

But just as in the presidential race, the makeup of the Senate will not be settled for some time because of the large number of mail-in ballots to be counted. Meanwhile, Democrats maintained their control of the House and were poised to add seats.

The Picture in California

It was the most expensive ballot measure campaign season in California history, but whose money was well spent?

Based on early returns for two of the most high-profile propositions, voters appeared to grant companies such as Uber and Lyft the right to keep their drivers as independent contractors but reject a plan to expand rent control to more homes and communities.

For the latest on all 12 California propositions as well as congressional and state Legislature seats, check out our California election results page. We are also tracking in real time results from Los Angeles County, Orange County, Ventura County and San Diego County.

China’s Long-Term Plan

No matter who wins the U.S. presidential election, or how American foreign and trade policies change, officials in Beijing have set several development goals for China to strengthen self-reliance through domestic consumption and technological innovation by 2035.

At the same time, commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China’s entry into the Korean War have emphasized the spirit of resisting “U.S. aggression.”

The message, directed to audiences within China, is clear: It fought the U.S. in the past and should not be afraid of fresh animosities — including a trade war, spying accusations and the future of Hong Kong — that could lead to outright confrontation with Washington.


As results trickled in on Nov. 7, 1950, television station KTTV-11 was sharing them with viewers from the Los Angeles Times newsroom.

A crew set up a camera and a reporter stood between the desks as Times employees diligently tracked the election. A studio audience sat in the Times-Mirror auditorium as a group of young women recorded the results in chalk on a large blackboard. Additional cameras took viewers inside the Republican and Democratic headquarters.

In a story in the next day’s paper, The Times called it “likely the most extensive telecast ever seen in the Southland.” It was a rare chance for voters at home to watch the “front lines” of covering an election in real time — coverage that is common today.

Nov. 7, 1950: In the Los Angeles Times City Room, reporter Bob Hartmann comments on the election results to KTTV.
Nov. 7, 1950: In the Los Angeles Times City Room, reporter Bob Hartmann comments on the election results to KTTV. The Times owned KTTV from 1949 until 1963.
(Los Angeles Times)

Want more of the Los Angeles Times archives? We’re on Instagram.


San Francisco Bay Area residents who travel out of state this holiday season to visit family and friends may be met with a 14-day quarantine advisory when they return.

— FBI agents served search warrants last week at the home of a Compton city councilman and the law offices of the Baldwin Park city attorney, part of a federal investigation examining Baldwin Park’s dealings with cannabis businesses, according to sources familiar with the probe.

— L.A. outlawed the possession of laser pointers and laser-style devices during public demonstrations, rallies, protests and picket lines, citing two dozen cases in which police officers and residents suffered eye injuries.

— Authorities say a 34-year-old man who was rescued from a brush fire that forced evacuations in Fontana on Sunday was arrested on suspicion of starting the blaze.

Support our journalism

Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.


— A federal judge in Chicago has struck down a key Trump administration rule that allows authorities to deny green cards to immigrants who use food stamps or other public benefits.

— Russia’s top diplomat said that about 2,000 fighters from the Middle East have joined the fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh, the worst outbreak of hostilities in the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan in more than a quarter-century.

— The heart of powerful Hurricane Eta began moving ashore in Nicaragua with devastating winds and rains that had already destroyed rooftops and caused rivers to overflow.

— About one-sixth of American adults said they’re on a special diet to lose weight or for other health reasons, according to a report published by researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


— Why director Christopher Nolan gave in and helped a critic interpret his movies.

— Actress Fairuza Balk on the legacy of “The Craft” and stepping back from Hollywood.

Harrison Ford gave a poignant tribute to Sean Connery, his “Indiana Jones” dad.

“Kristina Wong for Public Office” has our theater critic’s vote on the Kirk Douglas virtual stage.


— Companies have announced $143.1 billion of mergers and acquisitions globally in the last seven days, the highest for any week preceding a U.S. presidential vote since Bloomberg started collecting data. It’s more than double the tally for the run-up to the 2016 election.

— Chinese authorities have abruptly thrown into doubt the future of financial giant Ant Group Co. and its celebrated founder, billionaire Jack Ma, on the cusp of the biggest stock market debut the world has seen.


—The Dodgers’ Mookie Betts won a Gold Glove award, as did the Angels’ Griffin Canning.

— Is Anthony Lynn the right coach for the Justin Herbert era? The Chargers need to decide, columnist Dylan Hernández writes.

— How athletes have forced ESPN and other networks to change their game plan on mixing politics and sports.

Free online games

Get our free daily crossword puzzle, sudoku, word search and arcade games in our new game center at


— Americans need to spend some time in serious self-reflection about the last four years, columnist Robin Abcarian writes.

— California needs standards for when schools must reopen, The Times’ editorial board writes.

— On post-election day, are you thinking about moving to Canada? Here are some tongue-in-cheek tips.


— How do voting machines work? An expert explains. (Scientific American)

— Inside the fight at Wikipedia over whether a candidate for U.S. Senate should have had her own Wikipedia page. (Wired)


Though the Dodgers won the World Series, they didn’t play any games at Dodger Stadium because of the pandemic. Instead, it became a socially distanced voting center. And on Tuesday, the final day for casting a ballot, it drew quite the collection of voters, who encountered a mariachi band as well as two YouTube stars in American flag jock straps, with their own camera crew in tow. It all made for an Instagrammable moment — just as Katy Perry hitting the streets of L.A. dressed as a giant “I Voted” sticker had the day before.

Comments or ideas? Email us at