Georgians reacted with celebration and despair on Saturday to projections that former Vice President Joe Biden won the White House after capturing Pennsylvania’s 20 electoral votes.

Georgia is still too close to call, but Biden has steadily expanded his lead over President Donald Trump as elections officials count the last outstanding ballots.

Sunday evening updates: Check here for an updated story for Sunday Nov. 8


  • In Georgia, Biden led Trump by roughly 10,200 votes in the latest tally released by the Secretary of State’s Office. Few ballots remain to be counted, though exactly how many is unclear
  • Biden no longer needs Georgia’s 16 electoral votes to secure his election, but Democrats still see the state as a monumental prize

Here’s the latest:

6:04 a.m.

Biden extends lead with more Fulton County votes

President-elect Joe Biden extended his lead over President Donald Trump in Georgia early Sunday morning.

Fulton County released additional results shortly after 2 a.m., widening Biden’s margin to 10,195 votes.

9:50 p.m.

Hundreds of Gwinnett ballots must still be counted

Gwinnett County says it has hundreds more ballots to tally.

In a statement late Saturday, the county said a total of 535 absentee ballots that required a signature cure and three military/overseas ballots were not able to be tabulated because Dominion Voting Systems technicians were unable to make the system adjustments needed to complete a results upload.

In addition, 965 provisional ballots will have to be reviewed by the Gwinnett County Board of Voter Registrations and Elections to determine their eligibility to be tabulated. The county said Dominion technicians continue work to resolve the situation so that ballot adjudication can begin again Sunday morning.

The Board of Voter Registrations and Elections is scheduled to review the provisional ballots on Monday morning.

9:25 p.m.

Harris quotes John Lewis in victory speech

By Patricia Murphy

As Vice President-elect Kamala Harris began her speech, she quoted the late Rep. John Lewis to describe how important this moment is, not just for the country, but for democracy itself.

“Congressman John Lewis, before his passing, wrote, ‘Democracy is not a state. It is an act,’” she said. “And what he meant was that America’s democracy is not guaranteed. It is only as strong as our willingness to fight for it.”

Harris continued, “To guard it takes struggle. It takes sacrifice. But there is joy in it. And there is progress. Because we the people have the power to build a better future.”

8:06 p.m.

Fulton County rescans ballots after discovering some weren’t counted

Fulton County is rescanning all provisional and other ballots processed Friday after discovering some ballots were not reflected in totals it released that day.

It’s unclear how many ballots were not initially counted. In a written statement, the county said elections director Richard Barron "directed his staff to review to ensure that all provisional ballots were reflected in the results.

“In doing so he learned that some ballots were not captured in last night’s results,” the county said. "He also learned of a smaller number that were not scanned. Those are now being prepared for scanning.

“Out of an abundance of caution, all provisional, military and UOCAVA (Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act) ballots scanned on Friday, November 6 will be rescanned tonight,” the county said. "The upload made last night will be pulled and replaced with tonight’s rescanned file.

Before beginning the work, the county said Barron notified the State Elections Board monitor assigned to Fulton County and both political parties. He also asked that each part send at least one representative to observe the process.7:05 p.m.

Biden expands his narrow lead in Georgia

Joe Biden continues to expand his narrow lead over President Trump in Georgia.

After DeKalb County released additional results this evening, Biden extended his lead to 9,160 votes out of 4.98 million ballots counted so far.

You can find live election results here.

5:50 p.m.

Raffensperger highlights Fulton voting problem

Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says Fulton County has discovered an unspecified problem involving the reporting of its work from Friday.

The secretary said county officials are rescanning ballots at State Farm Arena.

“I have a monitor & investigators onsite. Also sent Dep. SOS as well to oversee the process to make sure to secure the vote and protect all legal votes,” Raffensperger said on Twitter.

5:26 p.m.

Nikema, not Nikki

By Maya Prabhu

U.S. Congresswoman-elect Nikema Williams stood in front of the mural of John Lewis - the man whose seat she’ll be sitting in when she goes to Washington - surrounded by members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. The Black women share a sisterhood with the vice president-elect.

“I think back to me initially running for office and someone told me that I should use the name Nikki, and not Nikema, because more people will vote for me in different parts of town if they didn’t know my name was Nikema, and then (to now have) a vice president named Kamala, who was mocked literally for her name,” Williams said. “It’s opened so many doors for so many little girls who feel like they have been silenced or told that they couldn’t be who they are. So as a Black woman in politics, this means the world.”

About 50 members of the sorority gathered at the mural to celebrate the wins of both Harris and Williams with a deejay and dancing.

5:15 p.m.

Biden gains ground in latest Georgia tally

Joe Biden gained a few hundred votes over President Donald Trump in the latest tally of votes released by the Georgia Secretary of State.

As of 5 p.m., Biden led by 7,577 votes. Watch for live election results here.

4:17 p.m.

Kemp: Election ‘far from over’ in Georgia

Gov. Brian Kemp said the election is “far from over” in Georgia Saturday afternoon.

Janelle Bowen came all the way from Pike County to join a pro-Trump demonstration in downtown Atlanta Saturday afternoon in front of State Farm Arena.  (Janel Davis/AJC)

icon to expand image

3:45 p.m.

Fears of voter fraud, loss of rights

By Janel Davis and Adrianne Murchison

Janelle Bowen came all the way from Pike County to join a pro-Trump demonstration in downtown Atlanta Saturday afternoon in front of State Farm Arena. “We came here to support Trump and expose this election fraud and stop the stealing of votes,” said Bowen, 53.

A Biden presidency will mean an immediate loss of rights, she said, including the option of wearing a mask during the pandemic.

“All of our rights are going to be taken away,” she said, adding that she doesn’t think Trump should concede. “We will protest, vote again, whatever it takes to get the legal votes counted.”

As the pro-Trump group waved signs, chanted USA and yelled messages supporting Trump, a number of drivers and walkers went past with their own pro-Biden messages. A tiny group of Biden supporters also set up their own temporary demonstration just down from the Trump group.

“The last four years for people of color have been hard,” said Jeaninne Clark, 38, who walked with her friend Shannon Dean across the street from the Trump group. “It will be refreshing to have someone in office who doesn’t act like a toddler.” With Biden’s win, “it feels like we can get back to normal,” Clark said.

But the coming together will take a while, Dean, 39, said. “With this (Biden) administration it’s an administration that is moving away from hate ... and with a more inclusive administration will come change.”

Meanwhile, Matt Kunz, a financial advisor and a former Milton City Councilman, said he suspects fraud in the vote counting. If there is a hint of cheating, he said Republicans have to follow through and investigate.

Kunz said the party has a responsibility to the 70 million voters who supported Trump. He said he sees the country divided not just politically, but culturally and spiritually. He said his morals are Christian but people in other faiths have generally accepted morals that are similar, and that commonality is where healing of the country is possible.

“We’ve done it before,” Kunz said. “Not without the processes to figure it out. Our founders set it up so we can prevent coordinated efforts to manipulate elections.”

Visitors at The King Center in Atlanta Saturday. (Maya Prabhu/AJC)

Credit: Maya Prabhu

icon to expand image

Credit: Maya Prabhu

3:27 p.m.

‘Answered prayers and calls to ‘count every vote’

By Maya Prabhu, Ada Wood and Imani Dennis

Lawan Croswell and her family just happened to be visiting Atlanta this weekend from Alexandria, Virginia, and already planned to be at The King Center on Saturday. But being in the heart of the Civil Rights movement when it was announced that not only Biden had won, but America would get its first Black woman as vice president, has made the trip event better, she said.

“To be right here, standing here at The King Center -oh, my God. It’s amazing. It’s surreal,” she said in front of the tombs of Martin Luther and Coretta Scott King. “I never would imagine, in my lifetime, I would be standing here at this moment in time because of all that Dr. King did. To see all this come to fruition after four years of Trump madness, it’s like his prayers are finally being answered.”

Maggie Bell is a volunteer coordinator for the New Georgia Project — as she describes it, a non-partisan, non-profit, civic engagement organization that focuses on communities of color being a part of the political process by encouraging voter registration.

At Freedom Park, they passed out free t-shirts, hats and face masks with “Count Every Vote” and “Voters Decide” written across them.

“Of course, count every vote, we want everybody’s voice and everybody’s vote to be represented in this election as it deserves to,” Bell said.

Today they are taking information of attendees to register voters and recruit volunteers for the upcoming election.

“This is the perfect space to get everyone who is engaged and excited to volunteer with us,” she said.

Tiffanie Moore came to Freedom Park to celebrate Biden’s win with her nieces, 4-year-old Daisy and 13-year-old Zina. They held up Biden-Harris flags and signs.

“We have a vice-president elect that is a Black and South-Asian American woman,” she said.

Like Harris, Moore is a graduate of an HBCU, Florida A&M University.

“It’s important to show my nieces that the glass ceiling is no longer there. I feel humbled and joyous,” she said. “As an African American woman we are the backbone of this country and our work goes unnoticed. We are finally being heard and the world is watching.”

Moore said that she had to have difficult conversations with her niece, Daisy, about Trump’s actions as president.

“For her to see some of the mean things that Donald Trump has said, I felt bad that she didn’t understand it,” she said.

“I want her to know that we can have different and difficult conversations with one another with civility,” she said.

2:45 p.m.

In Marietta Square, many eager for divisiveness to end

By Shaddi Abusaid

Dozens of families flocked to Marietta Square on Saturday afternoon to grab lunch and play with their children. While some were elated by the news of a Biden presidency, others said they were just hopeful America would become less divided over the next four years.

“Just look at all these kids playing together,” said lifelong Cobb resident Allen Adair, who was at Glover Park with his wife and their 2-year-old grandson. “They aren’t concerned about race or politics. There’s no divisiveness. They’re just out here enjoying themselves. Why can’t we do that as a people?”

2:20 p.m.

Freedom Park turns into a party as Biden supporters celebrate

By Ada Wood and Imani Dennis

In Freedom Park, it was impossible to speak over the sound of honking car horns as hundreds of Joe Biden supporters gathered to celebrate his projected White House win.

As celebrations went on, the gathering took on the feel of a party.

Check out the Twitter feeds of the AJC’s Ada Wood and Imani Dennis for interviews with attendees.

2:10 p.m.

A subdued scene by the downtown John Lewis mural

By Maya T. Prabhu

Newnan resident Deirdre Bembry said the news of Biden and Harris' win moved her to round up her sister Erika Styles and their children, who ranged in age from 13 or 3, to head to the John Lewis Mural downtown. It was their first visit to the portrait of the civil rights leader and congressman who died earlier this year.

“I just felt it deeply important to show my kids what was behind everything that is happening with our election and why this is probably the most important election of our lives - and for their future,” Bembry said.

A handful of people wandered by the mural and snapped pictures Saturday afternoon, with many honking and waving in support as they drove by.

2:05 p.m.

Trump supporters, including far-right paramilitary group, rally at CNN Center

By Chris Joyner

Scores of Trump supporters are assembling outside the CNN Center, including Chris Hill, the leader of the Georgia Security Force III% militia, a far-right paramilitary group. Speaking to his phone as he livestreamed through his YouTube account, Hill sounded defiant.

“Free people coming together. It’s now or never,” he said. “Trump 2020. It ain’t over yet.”

A number of people around Hill were armed, several in all-black with their faces covered. Hill said his group was not armed.

“We came up here without our rifles. We wanted to go incognito,” he said.

Hill said he would “reevaluate” if the other side is armed. The other side was a smaller group of pro-Biden demonstrators, and the group screamed profanities at each other across Centennial Olympic Park Dr. as cars driving by honked to show their support for one side or another.

“They didn’t flip it,” he said of Georgia.

1:55 p.m.

Georgia Democrats celebrate Biden victory; Republicans say ‘not yet’

By Tia Mitchell

Georgia Democrats, including former President Jimmy Carter, released words of joy and celebration after it became evident that Joe Biden would become the next president of the United States.

Republican elected officials were mostly silent, except for some of President Donald Trump’s most vocal supporters who said additional votes could turn the race in his favor.

Read more here.

1:50 p.m.

The scene in Midtown

By Alia Malik

Chloe Morrison, 18, visiting from Louisiana, was waiting for brunch outside the Flying Biscuit at Midtown’s rainbow crosswalk with two friends from Kennesaw, when a Biden flag appeared from the window of a nearby high rise.

Then people descended on the crosswalk banging pots and pans.

More than an hour later, at least 100 people still crowded the intersection of 10th and Piedmont, waving Biden signs and American flags and cheering as an endless impromptu parade of cars blared their horns.

Kris Felder, 36, a Doordash delivery driver from Conyers, was finishing a run when the cacophony broke out. She paid $5 to park and stood at the intersection, jumping and pumping her fist.

“You have all races, all religions, whether you’re gay, straight or whatever,” said Felder, who is Black. “Everyone’s out here for one reason and that’s to love one another. It just shows you every vote counts, every vote matters. …We turned blue states into red states. We made history. We have an African-American vice president, a female. That’s huge.”

Her friends, standing next to her, sprayed beer and White Claw into the air. “They’re about eight beers in,” Felder said.

Two blocks away, Lee Thornton, 53, wept as he embraced his friend Michael Cabe, 33, outside Cabe’s house.

“I wanted to be with somebody and just celebrate,” said Thornton, a principal at a real estate company. “The weight of the world has been lifted from our shoulders. …I’ve never felt this way in my entire life but I feel like Donald was the worst possible thing four our country. He divided us and destroyed our country.”

Cabe, a human resources professional who identifies as LGBTQ, stood behind flags with the pride and Human Rights Campaign logos, but made the conscious choice that the American flag would be the one he waved.

“I finally feel safe,” he said, adding that President Donald Trump had made him feel like he was not human or worthy of being American. “We just proved him wrong.”

1:10 p.m.

Rally to push vote counting turns into Biden celebration

By Ty Tagami

An Atlanta rally intended to demand the counting of all votes in Georgia turned into a party Saturday, as people trickled in after the announcement before noon that Joe Biden had won the presidential election.

“Y’all are not hype enough for me,” an announcer said over a speaker from the sound stage just after noon, interrupting the music on a hill in Freedom Park. “We just got a new president!”

A cheer erupted. Sporadic, sustained honks sounded from nearby Moreland Avenue.

11/7/20 - Atlanta, GA -  Staci Fox, CEO of Planned Parenthood celebrates and people cheer after the election was called for Joe Biden as they gathered for a Count Every Vote Rally at Freedom Park in Atlanta.   Ben Gray for the Atlanta Journal Constitution

Credit: Ben Gray

icon to expand image

Credit: Ben Gray

1 p.m.

Trump supporters weigh in at Capitol rally

By Christian Boone

Chants of “USA, USA” broke out at the state Capitol as roughly 200 flag-waving Trump supporters rallied for the president.

State Rep. Vernon Jones, claiming the Democratic Party tried to silence him, stirred the crowd with claims of the dystopian America to come under a Biden presidency.

Then came Congresswoman-elect Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Republican who garnered national headlines for spreading QAnon conspiracy theories and making racist, anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim comments online.

“I’m fighting hard for President Trump. I’m fighting hard for every vote in Georgia," she said, demanding an audit of Georgia’s new voting machines. “The government works for you, not the other way around.”

Georgia, Greene said, “is not a blue state."

Trump supporters rallied at the Georgia State Capitol Saturday after Joe Biden was announced as president-elect. (Ryon Horne / AJC)

Credit: Ryon Horne

icon to expand image

Credit: Ryon Horne

12:50 p.m.

Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter congratulate Biden

Former President Jimmy Carter was quick to congratulate Biden on his victory:

“Rosalynn joins me in congratulating our friends President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. We are proud of their well-run campaign and look forward to seeing the positive change they bring to our nation,” Carter said.

12:25 p.m.

Republicans double down on Georgia’s twin Senate runoffs

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s projected White House victory puts even more pressure on Republicans to carry Georgia’s two U.S. Senate races, which are not only going to a Jan. 5 runoff but will determine which party controls the U.S. Senate.

Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler laid out the stakes in a tweet to supporters after news outlets called the White House for Biden, which her GOP colleague David Perdue quickly retweeted:

If Democrats win both races the chamber will be split 50-50, giving Kamala Harris the tie-breaking vote as vice president.

12:10 p.m.

Midtown erupts in celebration, locals plan celebrations, protests

News of former Vice President Joe Biden’s projected White House win rippled through metro Atlanta on Saturday.

Supporters cheered in Midtown as news outlets called Pennsylvania’s 20 electoral votes for Biden:

Several motorists honked their horns in celebration around East Atlanta Village. One driver waved an American flag joyfully pumping his fist in the air. And fireworks were set off in Inman Park.

A noon rally at Freedom Park organized by Stacey Abrams' nonprofit New Georgia Project is likely to turn into a victory party:

Meanwhile, state Rep. Vernon Jones, a Democrat who endorsed Trump, said the president’s supporters will converge at the state Capitol at noon to “peacefully demonstrate."

Reaction began to pour in from local officials.

State Rep. Scott Holcomb, D-Atlanta, called Biden’s victory a “resounding” one.

“The country clearly said it wants a new direction with better, principled leadership," Holcomb said.

U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, R-Monroe, a Freedom Caucus member and staunch Trump supporter, chided the media for “trying to convince the American people this is already over.”

“It’s not! They spent 4 years refusing to admit (Trump) won 2016 but don’t want to allow even a few days to ensure every legal vote is counted!” Hice tweeted.

11/5/20 - Atlanta, GA -  Fulton County elections director Rick Barron holds a briefing at State Farm Arena where absentee ballot processing is nearing completion.  John Spink /

Credit: John Spink

icon to expand image

Credit: John Spink

Original post

Where we are in Georgia

Former Vice President Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump with a promise to return a sense of political normalcy to a nation beset by a coronavirus pandemic, economic turmoil and social upheaval after four divisive years of the Republican’s administration.

Biden secured victory by crossing 270 Electoral College votes with a win in Pennsylvania, projected Saturday by The Associated Press and national networks. Georgia is still too close to call, but Biden has steadily expanded his lead over Trump as elections officials count the last of the outstanding ballots.

The Democrat was ahead by 7,248 votes after he gained another 2,800 absentee and provisional votes overnight in Fulton County. If he maintains his lead, Biden will be the first Democratic presidential candidate to carry Georgia since 1992.

And though Biden no longer needs Georgia’s 16 electoral votes to secure his election, flipping the state would be a monumental achievement for Democrats who haven’t won any statewide office in Georgia since 2006.

RELATED: Live updating Georgia presidential vote count by county

Few ballots remain to be counted across Georgia, but exactly how many wasn’t clear.

The deadline for overseas and military absentee ballots to be received by county offices was Friday. Voters also had until Friday to correct problems with their absentee or provisional ballots when verification of their identity was needed.

County election offices reported receiving just 983 new absentee ballots Friday. It’s possible that additional ballots were received before the deadline but hadn’t yet been processed.

The next significant batch of votes will come from Gwinnett County, which was working Saturday to complete its count. There were about 538 absentee and 965 provisional ballots remaining to be counted in Gwinnett.

Late Friday, a runoff became certain between Republican U.S. Sen. David Perdue and Democrat Jon Ossoff.

The Associated Press called the race after Ossoff gained enough votes to put Perdue beneath the 50% required to win the race outright.

There will also be a second U.S. Senate runoff between Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Democrat Raphael Warnock. Both runoffs are scheduled for Jan. 5.

Previous updates: Biden’s lead in Georgia up to 7,200 votes