MSNBC host Rachel Maddow reacted in horror on Wednesday evening after the network’s Steve Kornacki presented data suggesting President Donald Trump could still overtake Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in the state of Arizona.
Both Fox News and the Associated Press have called the state for Biden — and Fox News elections analyst Arnon Mishkin strongly defended the decision early during the network’s overnight coverage. But on Wednesday night, elections guru Nate Silver called out the projection and said it “should be retracted now,” though he said the state still favored Biden.
“Our system is updating it as I speak, so I am going to write these numbers,” Kornacki said during a segment with Maddow, standing in front of a screen with the latest vote totals in Arizona. As he was speaking, the totals showed Biden’s lead declining from 52.3 percent of the vote to 51.8 percent, while Trump’s share grew from 46.3 percent to 46.8 percent.
“There it is,” Kornacki noted. “OK, what you just saw was the vote total in Maricopa County, Arizona, [it] just updated. To explain what’s going on here, Maricopa County is about two-thirds of Arizona in terms of population, so this is the motherlode when you’re talking about votes in Arizona.”
He added: “We have, basically, the third batch of votes, the third and final batch of votes they’re starting to … report out. We call these the late early votes. They were, you know, mailed ballots, absentee ballots that came in sort of after this past weekend or were brought in on Election Day. And the suspense has been would this be a Trump-favorable group, or would it be a Biden-favorable group? So we just got those new numbers.”
Kornacki noted Trump won 43,966 of the new votes compared to 30,322 for Biden. “Donald Trump is getting around 59 percent of these votes,” Kornacki said.
A shocked Maddow quietly interrupted in dismay. “Oh, God,” she said. “That’s crazy.”
“Yeah,” Kornacki responded. “Remember the three buckets here. The first bucket was the early [vote] — Biden won it by 10. The second bucket was the same-day. Trump won it by 26. The third bucket, you’re looking at the start of that.”
The new votes, which came in just after 9 p.m. Wednesday, represented nearly 75,000 out of more than 400,000 still left to be counted in Maricopa County. Trump was trailing Biden in the state by about 79,000 votes at that hour, meaning the president would probably need to carry a little more than 60 percent of the outstanding votes in Maricopa County in order to prevail in the state.
Watch above via MSNBC.
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