Thriller movies pale in comparison to the tension and suspense U.S. citizens experienced during the week of Election Day on Nov. 3. 

For two days, from Nov. 5 to Nov. 6, the now President-Elect Joe Biden and the now soon-to-be former President Donald Trump were locked in an election race that had come to a standstill with Biden at 264 electoral votes and Trump at 214. For two days Americans waited for four key states, Nevada, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Georgia, to finalize the vote count and submit the decisive electoral votes. 

“It was so stressful trying to keep track of the whole grinding mess, I would just keep refreshing the Google page to see if Nevada had updated yet,” Pasadena homeowner Calvin Nguyen said.

From traffic blocks produced by Trump supporters to peaceful protests in support of trans people being violently disrupted, civil unrest erupted like wildfires across the country. 

“Reading news about all the crap going on felt like a bunch of stupid football fan fights breaking out all over the country at the same time,” PCC sophomore Patrick Lucas said.

On Nov. 7, the Associated Press called the race, reporting that Nevada and Pennsylvania scored Biden a total of 26 electoral votes, winning him the election. After four days of anxious waiting around and seemingly perpetual chaos, America finally chose a president-elect, shaving a few pounds of stress off the minds of some of its citizens.

“We won! I shouted that through my house, to my wife, to my dog, I was so happy that we finally got the final results and that they said we won,” Pasadena resident Layla Rodriguez said. “To me it wasn’t because a democrat won, but because good, sense won the election you know.”

The winner of the 2020 Presidential Election may have been chosen, but the unrest for Pasadena residents and other Americans is far from over. Tensions remain high as President Trump and Republican representatives have expressed post-election bitterness, blaming voter fraud for their loss. 

During those grueling five days of the election Trump publicly questioned the integrity of the race as he trailed behind Biden in the hunt for the 270 Electoral College votes necessary for the win. Trump’s campaign filed lawsuits in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Georgia, and Arizona on baseless grounds of ballot tampering, improper in-person ballot rejection, as well as a legal challenge requesting the halt of the vote counting.

“The sheer scope of the ballots [Trump] is calling into question would require evidence damning enough to be in the level of the Watergate scandal, which he has given no indication to be in any possession of,” retired political scientist from Caltech Micah Alvarez said.

While Biden began concocting plans to address the coronavirus pandemic as well as announcing a future flurry of executive orders in effort to repeal several of Trump’s policies, Trump busies himself by further propagating baseless claims of being cheated out of an election. Staying true to his infamous Twitter record, the soon-to-be former President gravitated towards the social media platform to voice his grievances and launch even more accusations of ballot tampering.

Trump tweeted:  “The observers were not allowed into the counting rooms. I won the election, got 71,000,000 legal votes. Bad things happened which our observers were not allowed to see. Never before. Millions of mail-in ballots were sent to people who never asked for them!”

Since Election Day, over 28 of Trump’s tweets have been flagged by Twitter for having communicated misleading information or voiced a statement that had poor to no verity when disputed by Associated Press.

“He’s just burying himself a deeper hole by throwing a tantrum like this, especially on Twitter, he hasn’t got any proof that Biden’s campaign or the states had been cheating during the election,” 2nd year Naomi Luu said. “He can’t just sue and complain his way to keeping the White House.”

Biden will officially be inaugurated as the 46th President of the United States on Jan. 20, 2021. That gives Trump over two months to fully accept the election loss and begin his process in exiting the government executive life. Only time will tell if he will continue to contest the outcome and only time will tell how Biden will approach the country at its most divided.

“I will govern as an American president,” Biden said. “There will be no red states and blue states when we win. Just the United States of America.”

According to Biden’s campaign, he seeks to instate an age of bipartisan cooperation that overshadows the terms of his predecessors. He hopes to find common ground between both political parties in order to reach a compromise that would combat the burden of relentless filibusters and prevent further gridlocking of policies. Doing so, could considerably expedite national progress in addressing the problems plaguing the country while simultaneously pacifying the two parties.

“The problem right now is that no one seems to remember we’re all on the same team, America, and everyone’s too preoccupied trying exact petty retribution on one another,” Alvarez said. “Hopefully, Biden or some other individual will be able to unite the parties and make some tangible progress. For our sake.”

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