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Electoral College affirms Biden victory and AG Barr resigns at the same time

Donald J. Trump at the White House on Nov. 13, 2020. (Tia Dufour/White House) | Joe Biden at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in Feb. 2020. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)
December 14, 2020

The Electoral College Electors met and cast their official votes on Monday, affirming Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election, the Associated Press reported. Moments later, President Trump announced Attorney General Bill Barr has submitted his letter of resignation.

Monday marked the Dec. 14 deadline for which federal law requires all 50 states’ electors to formally cast their votes for president and vice president. California was the elector whose 55 votes cast pushed Biden beyond the 270-vote threshold. The votes will be sent to Congress for counting and finalizing next month.

All six battleground states where Biden secured the majority vote and President Trump contested — Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – cast their expected votes for Biden.

At 5:39 p.m. EST, Trump tweeted Barr’s resignation letter, saying, “Just had a very nice meeting with Attorney General Bill Barr at the White House. Our relationship has been a very good one, he has done an outstanding job! As per letter, Bill will be leaving just before Christmas to spend the holidays with his family.”

Trump said that Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen will assume the role of Acting Attorney General, while Richard Donoghue will take the role of Deputy Attorney General.

In his letter, Barr said, “As discussed, I will spend the next week wrapping up a few remaining matters important to the Administration and depart on December 23rd.”

Barr’s letter remarked on various accomplishments of the Trump administration, including “the strongest and most resilient economy in American history,” “historic peace deals in the Mideast,” and a COVID-19 vaccine “no one thought conceivable.”

Biden did not comment on Barr’s resignation, but delivered a speech Monday night following the final Electoral College votes.

In his speech, Biden said, “If anyone didn’t know it before, we know it now. What beats deep in the hearts of the American people is this: Democracy. The right to be heard. To have your vote counted. To choose the leaders of this nation. To govern ourselves. In America, politicians don’t take power — the people grant it to them. The flame of democracy was lit in this nation a long time ago. And we now know that nothing — not even a pandemic —or an abuse of power — can extinguish that flame,” according to a transcript of the speech provided to American Military News.

This story was updated to clarify the next step in the process after the electoral votes are cast.