A joint session of Congress has certified Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the winners of the 2020 US presidential election, hours after supporters of Donald Trump violently stormed the Capitol in an unsuccessful bid to stop the proceedings.
Trump himself has also conceded defeat for the first time, confirming he will commit to an “orderly transition” of power on inauguration day (January 20).
VP Mike Pence presided over the electoral vote count from each state, with Biden and Harris’ victory being finally confirmed at 3:32 AM ET when they were pushed over the 270 vote threshold by the votes from Vermont.
Statement by President Donald J. Trump on the Electoral Certification:
“Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th. I have always said we would continue our…
— Dan Scavino🇺🇸🦅 (@DanScavino) January 7, 2021
The Democrats’ victory was officially announced moments later by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), with Pence subsequently confirming his own defeat as he announced the final total of 306-232.
The reconvened Congress session came hours after a number of protesters breached security and got inside the Capitol building while others clashed with police outside. Eyewitness video captured police repelling the attackers with batons, pepper spray and tear gas.
Four people have died in the wake of the violence, including a woman who was believed to have been shot dead by police.
The ugly scenes sparked widespread condemnation from high-profile figures in the music world such as Cardi B, Tom Morello and St Vincent – who branded it a “disgrace”.
Donald Trump’s social media accounts have also been suspended after he told his rioting supporters “I love you” in a video message, before eventually calling on them to go home.