Overnight, Vice President Mike Pence declared Democrat Joe Biden the winner of the presidential election after Congress counted the electoral votes after a violent day at the Capitol.
Pence also announced that Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) was the winner of the vice presidency.
Moments after the vote was announced, Trump finally pledged an “orderly” transfer of power to Biden, while repeating false claims about the election that led to a mob storming the Capitol.
Early this morning, the Senate and House had voted to reject Trump loyalists’ challenges to Biden’s win in Pennsylvania.
Congress resumed the count after a pro-Trump mob had attacked the Capitol.
In rare remarks from the Senate dais, Pence, who earlier in the day had rebuffed Trump’s demands to intervene in the count, had said, “Violence never wins. Freedom wins. And this is still the people’s house.”
In a letter to colleagues hours after the siege at the Capitol, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) described the attack as “a shameful assault … on our democracy.
It was anointed at the highest level of government. It cannot, however, deter us from our responsibility to validate the election of Joe Biden.”
Pence officially affirmed the election results of Biden’s win early this morning, concluding an historic and sobering moment in time marred by pro-Trump rioters who attacked the Capitol in what amounted to an attempted coup.
Inside the Senate chamber at 3:42 a.m., Pence cited the results for Biden’s victory in Vermont, which pushed the Democrat past the 270 electoral votes for Congress to confirm him as the next president nearly 16 hours after the joint session began.
“Are there any objections to counting the certificate of the state of Vermont?” Pence asked. There was only silence.
The moment, which was delayed by Republicans objecting to the Pennsylvania electoral vote, was met with a rousing ovation from Democrats exhausted at the end of a marathon, dangerous process that dragged on from Wednesday afternoon to this morning and shook the nation.
“The announcement of the state of the vote by the president of the Senate shall be deemed a sufficient declaration as persons elected president and vice president of the United States,” Pence said.
In rebuffing President Trump’s demands to intervene in the count, the vice president followed through on what he said he was going to do on Wednesday.
He had told lawmakers in a 2½-page letter sent earlier in the day that he would indeed fulfill his constitutional duties despite the president’s wishes.
Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) told the Tulsa World that Trump’s disdain for the vice president not supporting him in overturning an election they lost was apparent in a conversation he had with Pence.
“I’ve known Mike Pence forever,” Inhofe said to the World. “I’ve never seen Pence as angry as he was today.”
Biden and Harris will be inaugurated Jan. 20 at noon.