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Supreme Court rejects Trump’s final offer to block release of financial documents

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a final attempt by former President Donald J. Trump to protect his financial records, issuing a brief unsigned order requiring Mr. Trump’s accountants to turn over his taxes and other records to New York prosecutors York.

The court order was a decisive defeat for Mr. Trump, who had gone to extraordinary lengths to keep his tax returns and related documents secret. No disagreement was noted.

The case involved a subpoena to Mr. Trump’s accountants, Mazars USA, by the office of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr., a Democrat. The cabinet said it would comply with the courts’ final ruling, which means the grand jury should receive the documents as soon as possible.

Mr. Vance made a three word statement in response to the court order: “The work continues.”

The former president criticized the court’s action. “The Supreme Court should never have let this ‘fishing expedition’ happen, but it did,” Trump said in a statement. “This is something that has never happened to a president before, all of this is Democratic inspiration in a totally democratic place, New York City and the state, completely controlled and dominated by one of my very enemies. publicized, Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Under the rules of grand jury secrecy, it would generally be difficult to know when, if at all, the public would see the information. But The New York Times has obtained more than two decades of data on the tax returns of Mr. Trump and his companies, and recently published a series of articles about them.

Mr Trump, according to the reports, has suffered significant losses, owes huge debts that he is personally obligated to repay, has avoided paying federal income taxes in 11 of the 18 years the Times examined, and only paid $ 750 in 2016 and 2017.

The scope of Mr. Vance’s investigation is not known. This stems in part from an investigation by his office into quiet payments to two women who said they had had relationships with Mr. Trump, relationships the president has denied. But judicial statements from prosecutors suggest they are also investigating potential crimes such as tax and insurance fraud.

The subpoena targeted Mr. Trump’s tax records and financial statements since 2011, the engagement agreements with the accountants who prepared them, the underlying raw financial data, and information about how the data was analyzed.

As a candidate in 2016, Mr. Trump promised to disclose his tax returns, but he never did. Instead, he fought hard to protect returns from scrutiny, for reasons that have been the subject of much speculation. In 2019, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York City ruled that state attorneys can require third parties to turn over the financial records of a sitting president for an investigation before a grand jury.

In a footnote to the ruling, Judge Robert A. Katzmann said Mr. Trump’s break with the practice of his predecessors was significant.

“We note that the last six presidents, dating back to President Carter, have all voluntarily made their tax returns public,” Judge Katzmann wrote. “While we do not give this fact decisive weight, it reinforces our conclusion that disclosure of personal financial information, by itself, is not likely to hamper the President in the performance of his duties.”

Mr. Trump appealed to the Supreme Court. In July, judges firmly rejected Mr. Trump’s central constitutional argument against the subpoena – that state prosecutors are powerless to investigate a sitting president.

“No citizen, not even the President, is categorically above the common duty to produce evidence when called upon in criminal proceedings,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote for the majority in this decision.

Although Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. disagree with other aspects of the decision, all nine judges agreed with the proposition. But the court gave Mr Trump another opportunity to challenge the subpoena, on more limited grounds.

“A president can enjoy the same protections as all other citizens,” wrote Chief Justice Roberts. “These include the right to challenge the summons on any ground permitted by state law, which generally includes bad faith and excessive burden or magnitude.”

This is exactly what Mr. Trump did, but his arguments were rejected by a trial judge and a panel of three unanimous judges from the New York Federal Court of Appeal.

“All documents produced in connection with Mazars’ subpoena would be protected from public disclosure by the rules of grand jury secrecy,” the panel said in an unsigned notice, “which greatly reduces the plausibility of the allegation that the district attorney acts out of desire to embarrass the President. “

“There is nothing to suggest,” the panel added of the information sought, “that these are just trivial documents generally relevant to a grand jury investigation into possible financial or corporate misconduct. . “

Mr. Trump’s lawyers then filed an “emergency request” asking the Supreme Court to intercede. He urged the court to block the appeal court’s decision while it decides to hear another appeal from Mr. Trump.

“Even if the disclosure of his papers is limited to prosecutors and grand jurors, the status quo can never be restored once confidentiality is destroyed,” said the brief. “But the damage will be more than irreparable if the records are made public. It will be a pitch – the strongest possible basis for a stay. “

In response, lawyers for Mr. Vance – including Carey R. Dunne, who first argued the case; Walter E. Dellinger III, former Acting Solicitor General of the United States in the Clinton administration; and Michael R. Dreeben, a long-time former Deputy Solicitor General and a member of the team that helped Robert S. Mueller III investigate Russian interference in the 2016 election – the Times reported. The cat, they said, was out of the bag.

“The New York Times got its tax return data and describes that data in depth in a series of articles,” Mr. Vance said. “With the details of his tax returns now public, the privacy interests claimed by the claimant have become very mitigated if they survive. And even assuming there are some left, they cannot justify an extraordinary remedy from this tribunal that would deprive the only grand jury of the facts available to anyone who reads the press.

“This litigation has already considerably hampered the grand jury investigation,” the brief said. “There is no legal basis for the extraordinary remedy that the plaintiff seeks – or remotely justifies the additional delay it causes.”

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WTTC rejects latest COVID-19 travel restrictions

The World Travel and Tourism Council insists that closing borders will backfire and ultimately delay economic recovery in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“While protecting public health is paramount, blanket travel bans cannot be the answer. They have not worked in the past and they will not work now,” WTTC President and CEO Gloria Guevara said in a statement released on Monday. Monday.

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“If a comprehensive and rapid response testing regimen were implemented at airports across the country to screen all travelers before they depart, it would ensure that only those infected with COVID-19 are isolated and prevented from traveling. No there would be a need for countries to introduce harmful and counterproductive wholesale bans for UK travelers. ” Dozens of countries in Europe, Asia, South America and the Middle East have restricted travel from the UK in an effort to prevent the spread of a variant of the coronavirus that health experts say may spread faster than others.

In addition to removing blanket travel bans, the WTTC advocates for more accessible COVID-19 testing.

“People should not be discouraged from traveling because they simply cannot find or arrange to be tested at a local laboratory or testing center. We need to make it much easier for travelers to get tested before their trip,” he added Guevara.

“Travelers do not pose a greater risk than other members of the community if they follow all internationally recognized health and safety protocols, including the mandatory use of masks and regular testing,” he said. “While we understand the concern and need to curb the spread of COVID-19, the increasing number of direct travel bans are incredibly damaging and economically damaging. We must not underestimate the dire social impact of increasing isolation and its effect on mental health. “.

Guevara warned that failing to boost travel by reopening countries and implementing extensive tests at airports will result in hard hit local economies and millions of lost jobs.

“All sectors of the economy, not just travel and tourism, will suffer, as will the countries that impose the ban, as their own economies feel the impact of border closures and loss of business,” concluded Guevara . “The travel and tourism sector will be critical to driving economic recovery, so it is absolutely crucial that action is taken now to save it. Otherwise, it will collapse and millions of people will lose their jobs.”

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Senate rejects attempted blockade of UAE arms deal

WASHINGTON – The Senate on Wednesday rejected efforts to block the sale of $ 23 billion worth of ammunition to the United Arab Emirates, overcoming concerns over sending weapons to Gulf Arab countries.

The pair of votes, forced by a bipartisan group of senators, highlighted growing unease in Congress over the shipment of large slices of sophisticated weapons that could dramatically shift the military balance in a region facing war by slow-cooked proxy. But in a victory for President Trump, the majority voted against the blockade, endorsing his last-minute attempt to send armed drones and stealth fighter jets to the UAE military and saying the strengthening of the country’s arsenal. country would help allied nations against Iran.

“This would extend the 20 years of growing our relationship, working side by side against common concerns and common enemies,” said Senator Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri. “The UAE has always been willing to accompany us on at least six long-term deployments. They come, they stay, they are side by side with us on the ground.

The administration formally notified Congress last month of the planned $ 23 billion sale, a deal that included up to 50 F-35 planes, up to 18 Reaper drones and other precision weapons. The push, backed by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, came as he and other administration officials completed the Abraham Accord, a joint deal in which the UAE became the third Arab nation. to recognize Israel.

A vote to block the sale of F-35 planes failed 47-49, and a separate vote to block the sale of drones failed 46-50, Arizona Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema, both Democrats, voting in favor of the drone package. Mr. Kelly opposed the sale of the F-35.

Administration officials have insisted that the arms sale – especially the transfer of the coveted F-35 fighter jets – is not a direct reward for the recognition of Israel by the Emirates. But they acknowledged it was linked to the broader diplomatic initiative, and Mr Kushner briefed Senate Republicans on Tuesday about his work with the Emiratis, according to a person familiar with the discussion.

Emirati diplomats, led by UAE Ambassador Yousef al-Otaiba, lobbied senators in the days leading up to the vote, spreading a quick-response Twitter thread as lawmakers debated the provision and asserted that the sale “is essential to protect our common interests against common adversaries”, referring to Iran.

“The UAE has purchased and operated some of America’s most advanced defense systems including the F-16, Patriot and THAAD. @usairforcThe F-35 squadrons are based in the UAE ”, Embassy officials wrote. “The UAE has never compromised or shared this technology with an adversary or without the knowledge and approval of the United States.”

Democrats had accused Trump administration officials of rushing sales in the final months of Mr. Trump’s tenure and pointed to reports that the Emirates had previously misused US-made weapons.

“There is no doubt that the UAE’s recent normalization deal with Israel is a big deal, and there is a level of arms transfer that could make sense for an important partner in the region,” Senator Christopher said. S. Murphy, Democrat of Connecticut and one of the sponsors of the legislation to block sales. “But the recent behavior of the Emiratis in Yemen and Libya, where American weapons have been misused and given to radical militias, in addition to their active and growing defense relations with China and Russia, should give everyone pause for thought. world.

Congressional efforts to block arms sales are seldom successful. After the administration bypassed Capitol Hill last year to authorize the sale of billions of dollars in ammunition to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, lawmakers attempted to derail the deal but were unable to cancel the president’s veto.

Nonetheless, the sale, which experts say could take six to eight years, could be canceled by the incoming Biden administration. Several advisers to President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. fear sending ammunition to Arab Gulf countries due to the Saudi-led war in Yemen, which has created the world’s largest humanitarian disaster.

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Supreme Court rejects Republican vote challenge in Pennsylvania

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court on Tuesday denied a request by Republicans in Pennsylvania to overturn the state’s election results. The judges said they would not block a decision by Pennsylvania’s highest court that would have dismissed a challenge to the use of mail-in ballots in the state. The Supreme Court order was only one sentence long and there were no dissent noted.

The Supreme Court’s request for intercession encountered significant legal hurdles, as it was filed long after the enactment of the contested law that allowed postal votes and was based on matters of state rather than federal law.

At the end of November, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court sentenced the plaintiffs, led by Rep. Mike Kelly, a Republican, on the first ground, saying they could have challenged a 2019 law allowing postal voting for some reason there. is over a year old.

“By the time this action was filed on November 21, 2020, millions of Pennsylvania voters had already expressed their will in the June 2020 primary and November 2020 general election,” the court said. “The petitioners did not act with due diligence in making the request in this case. Equally clear is the substantial harm flowing from the petitioners’ failure to swiftly implement a facial challenge to the statutory postal voting system, as such inaction would result in the denial of the right to vote for millions of Pennsylvania voters. .

The plaintiffs had asked the state court to overturn the ballots mailed after the fact or to ask the state legislature to choose Pennsylvania voters.

The filing in the United States Supreme Court sought an order directing state officials not to take any further steps to certify the vote in Pennsylvania or to “quash any action already taken” while the plaintiffs pursued a lawsuit. call. The request was directed to Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr., a member of the Emergency Claims Tribunal for State Decisions.

The case challenged the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s interpretation of state law. The Supreme Court of the United States does not generally question these decisions.

Urging judges not to intercede, state attorneys said the Republicans’ demands were “an affront to constitutional democracy.”

“The petitioners ask this tribunal to undertake one of the most dramatic and disruptive invocations of the judiciary in the history of the Republic,” they wrote. “No court has ever issued an order quashing a governor’s certification of presidential election results.”

They said there were four flaws in the challengers’ arguments. At the United States Supreme Court, the challengers said state law conflicts with federal constitutional provisions governing elections. But they had not made that point squarely in their major filings in state courts, and the Supreme Court usually does not rule on issues that have not been decided first by a lower court.

Additionally, state attorneys wrote, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision was based on a state law issue. This “adequate and independent state law ground” for the decision, they wrote, prevents review by the United States Supreme Court.

They added that the challengers had not suffered the kind of concrete harm that would give them standing to sue and that the 2019 law was not at odds with the state constitution.

Either way, state attorneys wrote, the issue is largely moot, as the state election results in favor of Joseph R. Biden Jr. have been certified and submitted. The challengers’ final argument, they wrote, is that the Supreme Court should simply overturn the state’s election results. This request, they wrote, was mind-boggling and unconstitutional.

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WHO rejects antiviral drug remdesivir as Covid treatment

The World Health Organization on Thursday recommended not to use the antiviral remdesivir, a drug that had generated great interest as a treatment for Covid-19.

An expert group “concluded that remdesivir had no significant effect on mortality or on other important patient outcomes, such as the need for mechanical ventilation or the time needed for clinical improvement” , announced the WHO. The committee published its review in The BMJ. The report does not completely rule out the drug’s use as a Covid treatment, but said evidence was lacking to recommend its use.

Gilead Sciences, maker of remdesivir, whose trade name is Veklury, said in a statement that its drug “is recognized as a standard of care for the treatment of hospital patients with Covid-19 in the guidelines of many credible national organizations,” including the US National Institutes of Health and Infectious Diseases Society of America, Japan, UK and Germany. He added that there are “several randomized, controlled studies published in peer-reviewed journals that demonstrate the clinical benefits of Veklury.”

The potential usefulness of remdesivir had been the subject of debate and skepticism for months, and particularly in recent weeks, after the Food and Drug Administration approved it as the first treatment for Covid-19 in late October. A large study, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, found that the drug reduced the recovery time of hospital patients by 15 to 11 days. Two other trials reviewed by the agency, sponsored by Gilead, did not include placebo controls, which are considered essential for judging effectiveness.

President Trump received remdesivir along with other treatments last month when he was hospitalized with Covid.

Since at least March, when the pandemic began to spread from China to Europe via the United States, pharmaceutical companies and researchers have been working on the fly, and practicing doctors have experimented with any treatment that shows promise. , including steroids. In September, the WHO expert group strongly recommended the use of steroids for critically ill patients.

For the new analysis, the panel looked at evidence from four trials, including one conducted by the NIH and one sponsored by the WHO and recently posted to a pre-print server, which included around 5,000 patients, the largest in this day. The article has not been peer reviewed or published in a scientific journal.

The results of this trial “called into question some of the benefits that were seen earlier in the NIH study,” said Dr. Bram Rochwerg, associate professor of medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont. and co-chair of the WHO panel.

Dr Rochwerg said the expert panel “made it clear in the document that trials with remdesivir should continue and some populations could benefit.” But the drug is expensive and administered intravenously, he noted. Its use could divert resources that could be deployed more efficiently, Dr Rochwerg said.

Remdesivir has been cleared for emergency use since the spring in the United States, and in October Gilead reported that it had generated $ 873 million in revenue so far this year.

The widely adopted use of the drug for Covid symptoms had baffled some experts long before FDA approval.

“This is a completely appropriate decision by the WHO,” wrote Dr Peter Bach, director of the Center for Health Policy and Outcomes at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, in an email. “Remdesivir costs thousands of dollars, the largest randomized trial examining its use in Covid suggests that it may have no benefit of any kind, and the only positive study dates back to an era prior to the use of the dexamethasone for serious illness, ”he added. to a steroid now commonly used in hospitals.

Dexamethasone is a treatment that helps patients with Covid-19 at certain stages of the disease.

The WHO expert group report, called the “Living Guideline,” is an initiative to continuously inform physicians and patients when new evidence emerges that is changing current medical practice.

“It’s a little troubling that we haven’t found much that works yet,” said Dr Rochwerg. “But I hope that ongoing research will identify other drugs that improve survival and symptoms.”

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WHO rejects antiviral drug remdesivir as Covid treatment

The World Health Organization on Thursday recommended not to use the antiviral remdesivir, a drug that had generated great interest as a treatment for Covid-19.

An expert group “concluded that remdesivir had no significant effect on mortality or on other important patient outcomes, such as the need for mechanical ventilation or the time needed for clinical improvement” , said WHO. The committee published its review in The BMJ. The report does not completely rule out the drug’s use as a Covid treatment, but said evidence was lacking to recommend its use.

Gilead Sciences, maker of remdesivir, whose trade name is Veklury, said in a statement that its drug “is recognized as a standard of care for the treatment of hospital patients with Covid-19 in the guidelines of many credible national organizations,” including the US National Institutes of Health and Infectious Diseases Society of America, Japan, UK and Germany. He added that there are “several randomized, controlled studies published in peer-reviewed journals that demonstrate the clinical benefits of Veklury.”

The potential usefulness of remdesivir had been the subject of debate and skepticism for months, and particularly in recent weeks, after the Food and Drug Administration approved it as the first treatment for Covid-19 in late October. A large study, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, found that the drug reduced the recovery time of hospital patients by 15 to 11 days. Two other trials reviewed by the agency, sponsored by Gilead, did not include placebo controls, which are considered essential for judging effectiveness.

President Trump received remdesivir along with other treatments last month when he was hospitalized with Covid.

Since at least March, when the pandemic began to spread from China to Europe via the United States, pharmaceutical companies and researchers have been working on the fly, and practicing doctors have experimented with any treatment that shows promise. including steroids. In September, the WHO expert group strongly recommended the use of steroids for critically ill patients.

For the new analysis, the panel looked at evidence from four trials, including one conducted by the NIH and one sponsored by the WHO and recently posted to a pre-print server, which included around 5,000 patients, the largest in this day. The article has not been peer reviewed or published in a scientific journal.

The results of this trial “called into question some of the benefits that were seen earlier in the NIH study,” said Dr. Bram Rochwerg, associate professor of medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont. and co-chair of the WHO panel.

Dr Rochwerg said the expert panel “made it clear in the document that trials with remdesivir should continue and some populations could benefit.” But the drug is expensive and administered intravenously, he noted. Its use could divert resources that could be deployed more efficiently, Dr Rochwerg said.

Remdesivir has been cleared for emergency use since the spring in the United States, and in October Gilead reported that it had generated $ 873 million in revenue so far this year.

The widely adopted use of the drug for Covid symptoms had baffled some experts long before FDA approval.

“This is a completely appropriate decision by the WHO,” wrote Dr Peter Bach, director of the Center for Health Policy and Outcomes at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, in an email. “Remdesivir costs thousands of dollars, the largest randomized trial examining its use in Covid suggests that it may have no benefit of any kind, and the only positive study dates back to an era prior to the use of the dexamethasone for serious illness, ”he added. to a steroid now commonly used in hospitals.

Dexamethasone is a treatment that helps patients with Covid-19 at certain stages of the disease.

The WHO expert group report, called the “Living Guideline,” is an initiative to continuously inform physicians and patients when new evidence emerges that is changing current medical practice.

“It’s a little troubling that we haven’t found much that works yet,” said Dr Rochwerg. “But I hope that ongoing research will identify other drugs that improve survival and symptoms.”

[Like the Science Times page on Facebook. | Sign up for the Science Times newsletter.]

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Trump rejects virus coverage, Biden rejects virus leadership: this week in the 2020 race

Welcome to our weekly review of the state of the 2020 campaign.

  • During the presidential election, the Biden campaign dominated the paid media landscape. On TV and radio, the Biden campaign ran $ 62 million over the past week, when the Trump campaign has only spent about $ 15.5 million, according to Advertising Analytics, an ad tracking company. The advantage lies on Facebook, where the Biden campaign spent $ 9.9 million over the past week, and the Trump campaign has gone $ 4.7 million over the same period there.

  • As voters walked to early voting sites this week and postal votes poured in, expectations that the election would see a historically high turnout were confirmed. In Texas, a closely guarded battlefield, more than 9 million the ballots had already been cast on Friday – more than the total number of votes cast in the 2016 election.

  • Investigations released this week continued to show a steady lead for Mr Biden across the country and a sizable advantage in most of the major battlefield states. A New York Times / Siena College investigation into North Carolina gave Mr Biden a three percentage points edge there, while another Michigan Times / Siena poll put Mr. Biden’s lead at eight points.

A presidential election that began in earnest almost two years ago has finally arrived. Polls show the campaign is ending as it started: as a referendum on President Trump. What is new is that voters are also weighing in on his handling of the coronavirus pandemic. Democrats believe they have an advantage, a wider path to 270 electoral votes across the Midwest, Southwest, and even the Sun Belt. Mr. Trump’s campaign acknowledges a skyrocketing but believes that high voter turnout on election day can help squeak a victory similar to that of 2016.

Yet what happens on Tuesday could be the start of another chapter in this election – not its completion.

Keep up with Election 2020

Despite all the advanced campaign efforts of Mr. Trump and Joseph R. Biden Jr., both sides are bracing for a lengthy legal battle that could include state litigation, lengthy ballot counting efforts, and managing expectations. of their respective electoral bases. Mr Trump contributed to the tense mood by insinuating that a Supreme Court that now includes three of its handpicked judges could side with it on election-related issues.

Tuesday will sort out fact from fiction and justified fears from fantasy. It will also answer the question that has dominated politics for the past four years: Was Mr. Trump’s election in 2016 a perfect electoral storm, or a sign of a political Houdini about to surprise again?

Mr. Trump, who is not known to stick to prepared remarks, failed to deliver a clear closing message to voters in the final weeks of the campaign. Instead, his rambling rally speeches are more like a party tray with a little something for everyone.

  • False Coronavirus Claims: His main message to supporters is to ignore their eyes and ears and trust him that the worst of the pandemic is over and that contracting a virus that has killed 230,000 Americans is not, in fact, a death sentence. “With the fake news, it’s all Covid, Covid, Covid, Covid,” Mr. Trump complained at a rally in Omaha last week. “I had it. Here I am, right? His riff on the media’s obsession with the coronavirus is also an admission that he hasn’t been able to weather the pandemic, or steer coverage, like he did. has been able to do this in the past.

  • What he wants to talk about is Hunter Biden: The Trump campaign had always hoped to portray Mr. Biden and his family as corrupt, as they did four years ago with Hillary Clinton. But the story has not caught on, and Mr. Trump often complains that he cannot get the “mainstream media” to cover an unsubstantiated New York Post report based on unverified information. He also refuses to admit that this is not an effective closing message for him, as some Republicans believe. “I get a call from all the experts, okay, guys who’ve run for president six, seven, eight times, never got past the first round, but they’re calling me. “Sir, you shouldn’t be talking about Hunter,” he said at a rally in Tampa Thursday. “’You shouldn’t say bad things about Biden because nobody cares.’ I do not agree. You know, maybe that’s why I’m here and they’re not.

  • Attacks on the election: Mr. Trump sprinkles his rallying speeches with baseless attacks on the electoral process. Last week, he said without real proof that “every day there is cheating with the ballots”. This is part of his constant questioning of the integrity of the election. Trump’s advisers have said their best hope is for the president to win Ohio and for Florida to be too close to call early in the night, robbing Mr. Biden of a quick victory and giving Mr. Trump the opportunity to undermine the validity of countless postal ballots in the days after.

Mr Biden’s campaign is convinced that what voters find distasteful about the president and his administration can sum it all up in their handling of the coronavirus. In the home stretch, as Mr. Biden increased his travel schedule to states like Iowa, Georgia and Michigan, the Democrats’ message was united – all coronaviruses, all the time.

Under the hood, the Biden campaign has several factors it examines on election day, to judge whether the message has resonated or whether the campaign is going on longer.

  • Districts to watch: The first sign of Ms Clinton’s eventual defeat in 2016 was an uncommitted Democratic electorate. For Mr Biden, this is the first thing the campaign seeks to reverse – and the one most under their control. Battlefield states like North Carolina and Florida will be the first big tests on November 3, as they are expected to count the ballots relatively quickly. In those states, expect the turnout of black voters to be an initial measure of democratic turnout on election day.

  • Win early in these four states: Mr. Biden has several paths to victory, and both campaigns know it. While the dream scenario includes early wins in Florida and North Carolina, blocking Mr. Trump’s path to 270 electoral votes early in the evening, it also has a few side options. Georgia and Arizona are other battlefield states that should be known on election night, and where Mr. Biden can make up for the electoral votes that went to Mr. Trump in 2016. What if all else fails , there’s the Midwest, which functions like Mr. Biden. worst case scenario. Michigan and Pennsylvania said it would take several days to complete the count.

  • Party building: Tuesday is not only the day for Mr Biden to be elected president, but it could usher in a wave of ruling Democrats across the country. Over the past week, Mr Biden has taken a look at states like Iowa and Georgia, which are critical for Democrats seeking to take control of the Senate. If Mr Biden is elected with majorities in Congress, it puts a Democratic Party firmly within his grasp, even as he struggles with strong ideological divisions. It also gives them a chance to reverse multi-year deficits in state legislatures across the country during a critical year of redistribution. Everything is on the table for Democrats and for Mr. Biden. It will quickly become clear if they seize the opportunity.

Nick Corasaniti and Giovanni Russonello contributed reporting.