Joe Biden's US election statement in full: 'we will emerge victorious'

Mr Biden made an appeal to Americans to come together when the election is over, adding he believed he had won

Democratic U.S. presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden smiles as he pulls off his face mask to speak about the results of the 2020 U.S. presidential election during an appearance with in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., November 4, 2020. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
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After a fraught day of vote counting including lawsuits being filed over the US presidential election, Joe Biden took to a podium at his campaign headquarters in Delaware to address the nation.

The Democratic candidate announced he was confident that he and Kamala Harris would win and praised high voter turnout as he stressed the importance of the US democratic system.

He struck a tone of unity and reconciliation, urging all Americans to put aside their differences once the result was announced.

Here is Joe Biden's speech in full:

"I'm sure we'll have more to say later and either tonight or tomorrow, but let me begin by thanking the press for being here and thanking everyone else.

"My fellow Americans, yesterday, once again, proved that democracy is heartbeat of this nation just as it has been the heartbeat of this nation for two centuries.

"And even in the face of pandemic, more Americans voted in this election than ever before in American history.

Joe Biden gives rousing speech and all but claims victory

Joe Biden gives rousing speech and all but claims victory

"Over 150 million people cast their votes. I think that's just extraordinary. And if we had any doubts, we shouldn't have any longer about a government by and for the people. It's very much alive, very much alive in America.

"Here, the people rule. Power can't be taken or asserted, it flows from the people and it's their will that determines who will be the president of the United States and their will alone.

"And now after a long night of counting, it's clear that we're winning enough states to reach 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency."

'I believe we will be the winners'

"I'm not here to declare that we've won but I am here to report when the count is finished, we believe we will be the winners.

"Of all the votes counted, we have won Wisconsin by 20,000 votes, virtually the same margin that President Trump won that state four years ago.

"In Michigan, we lead by over 35,000 votes and it's growing, a substantially bigger margin than President Trump won Michigan in 2016. Michigan will complete its vote soon, maybe as early as today.

"And I feel very good about Pennsylvania. Virtually all the remaining balance to be counted are cast by mail. And we've been winning 78 per cent of the votes by mail in Pennsylvania.

"We flipped Arizona and the second district of Nebraska. Of special significance to me is that we won with a majority of the American people and every indication is that the majority will grow.

"We have a popular vote lead of nearly 3 million votes and every indication is that will grow as well.

To make progress we have to stop treating our opponents as enemies

"Indeed, Senator Harris and I are on track to win more votes than any ticket in the history of this country has ever won the presidency and vice presidency, over 70 million votes. I'm very proud of our campaign.

"Only three presidential campaigns in the past have defeated an incumbent president. When it's finished, God willing. we'll be the fourth.

"This is a major achievement. This is a major achievement."

A president for all Americans

"It's been a long and difficult campaign but it's been a more difficult time for our country. A hard time. We've had hard campaigns before, we faced hard times before.

"So once this election is finalised and behind us, it'll be time for us to do what we've always done as Americans.

"To put the harsh rhetoric of the campaign behind us, to lower the temperature, to see each other again, to listen to one another, to hear each other again, respect and care for one another to unite, to heal, to come together as a nation.

No one's going to take our democracy away from us

"I know this won't be easy. I'm not naive. Neither of us are. I know how deep and hard the opposing views are in our country on so many things.

"But I also know this as well: to make progress we have to stop treating our opponents as enemies.

"We are not enemies. What brings us together as Americans is so much stronger than anything that can tear us apart.

"So let me be clear. I, we, are campaigning as a Democrat, but I will govern as an American president.

"The presidency itself is not a partisan institution. It's the one office in this nation that represents everyone. And it demands a duty of care for all Americans. That is precisely what I will do.

"I will work as hard for those who didn't vote for me as I will for those who did vote for me. Now, every vote must be counted. No one's going to take our democracy away from us.

"Not now, not ever. America's come too far. America's fought too many battles. America's endured too much to ever let that happen.

"We the people will not be silenced. We the people will not be bullied. We the people will not surrender. My friends. I'm confident we'll emerge victorious.

"This will not be my victory alone, or our victory alone. It will be a victory for the American people for our democracy for America.

"And there will be no blue states and red states when we win, just the United States of America. God bless you all. And may God protect our troops."