Washington, Dec 19 (EFE).- Donald Trump on Monday received more than the 270 Electoral College votes he needed to confirm his victory in the Nov. 8 US presidential election.
Although the vote in the Electoral College, comprised of 538 electors corresponding to all the members of Congress, is usually a mere formality validating the number of electoral votes received in the November balloting by the winning presidential candidate, this year there had been considerable anticipation about whether electors would vote to confirm the controversial mogul’s victory given the requests by some electors for their colleagues to refuse to cast their votes for him.
Trump won by relatively small margins in the popular vote in several key states, but he lost the nationwide popular vote by almost three million votes to his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, which – along with Russian interference in the elections, as verified by US intelligence agencies – had created doubts about the legitimacy of his triumph.
The billionaire magnate went over the 270-vote threshold late on Monday afternoon when Texas electors cast their ballots, confirming him as president-elect.
Now, two final steps remain to cement Trump as the 45th president: the counting of congressional votes on Jan. 6 and his inauguration on Jan. 20.
The US electoral system does not guarantee that the presidential candidate winning the nationwide popular vote will become president, since the number of electoral votes candidates obtain is the key figure and the Electoral College tends to give greater weight to individual voters in the smaller states.
The voting in each of the 50 states by members of the Electoral College were tenser affairs than normal on Monday with protests being staged inside and outside the official sites where the ballots were tallied and a number of electors deciding to flout convention and vote their consciences rather than vote in accord with the popular vote in their states.