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Trump, Biden campaign after final debate

Trump and Biden will deliver remarks in their respective home states.
Image: President Donald Trump and Joe Biden on a background of concentric circles made up of blue and red stars.
Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

President Donald Trump and Joe Biden are heading back to the trail on Friday after Thursday night's final presidential debate.

The candidates will deliver speeches from their respective home states. Biden will deliver remarks on Covid-19 in Wilmington, Delaware, around 2:30 p.m. ET. Later in the day, Trump will appear at a rally in Pensacola, Florida, at 8 p.m. ET.

This live coverage has ended. Continue reading election news from October 24, 2020.

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Read the latest updates, fact checks and debate takeaways:

The South was a lost cause for Democrats. Now eight key Senate seats are in play.

659d ago / 12:49 PM UTC

Karen Ashley has walked with a handful of older Black men, residents of a low-income housing development, to the State Farm Arena each day early voting has been available in Georgia.

These strolls, which she called “wheelchairs and walkers to the polls,” are the culmination of months of work, including candidate forums and debate watch parties she held at the apartment building.

As the director of resident services at Friendship Towers, Ashley, 59, said she aimed to get all 106 residents — many of whom did not complete high school and had never voted before — to cast their ballots.

“I had the thought one time when I was looking at all of the negative back and forth between this group and that,” she said while accompanying some residents back to their homes. “And I said, ‘They don't even consider this population.’ I said, ‘Guys, this is what we're gonna do. We’re gonna register, we're gonna vote and your voice will be counted.’”

Read more

The states Trump can’t afford to lose

659d ago / 3:22 AM UTC

It will take at least 270 electoral votes to win the 2020 election. Steve Kornacki looks at the battleground polling to determine which states Donald Trump can’t afford to lose.

Trump wraps up second rally in Florida to (mostly) maskless crowd as U.S. sets Covid record

659d ago / 2:14 AM UTC
Donald Trump
President Donald Trump dances at the end of a campaign rally at Pensacola International Airport.Mandel Ngan / AFP - Getty Images

President Trump wrapped up his second rally of the day on Friday, speaking to a mostly maskless, tightly packed crowd as the U.S. set a daily record for coronavirus cases for the second day in a row.

Friday's 77,993 cases and counting, as tallied by NBC News, topped Thursday's 77,640. The previous high of 75,723 was set on July 29. The virus has killed more than 225,000 people in the U.S., according to the latest tally.

Trump continued to hammer rival Joe Biden over his policy agenda after Thursday's debate, seizing on the Democratic nominee's remarks about the oil industry to a crowd in Pensacola as he did earlier in the day speaking to seniors in the battleground state. 

Despite the record number of Covid-19 cases reported on Friday, Trump reiterated his claim that the country is “rounding the turn” of the pandemic “with our without” a vaccine. Trump also used the rally to do outreach to women, where polls show him trailing Biden. 

“I said one thing the other day, I said, 'Suburban women, please love me. Please. Please.' Because you see suburban women, I have saved Suburbia, I've gotten rid of the worst regulation," he said. 

The president plans to vote early tomorrow in Florida and will travel to events in North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin. 

More women than men embracing early voting

659d ago / 2:02 AM UTC

As Americans are opting to vote early — either via in-person or mail-in ballots — at a record rate, a shift likely fueled by the pandemic, it’s women who are embracing the early vote more than men. 

Of the 68.6 million early ballots requested, 52 percent were requests made by women, according to data compiled by TargetSmart. 

And women were more likely to have returned their ballots, with 54 percent of those mailed in or cast early in person coming from women. 

Early voting
Women are returning more early voting ballots or voting in person than men.

 

See more details and interactive graphics on NBCNews.com. 

In the home stretch, signs Trump's hard-sell seniors pitch may be falling short

659d ago / 1:08 AM UTC

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Eleven days out from the election, President Donald Trump held a last-minute campaign event in one of the most reliably red areas of Florida, whose voters have become a question mark hanging over his campaign — one that could help make or break his re-election bid.

The Villages, a sprawling retirement community home to one of the whitest and oldest populations in the country, has consistently supported Republican candidates for years, breaking for Trump by nearly 40 percentage points in 2016.

But the president's decision to campaign here came amid his struggle to hold on to older white voters, like the ones he addressed at this Friday stop, who have grown uncomfortable with his rhetoric and his response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Polling this year has shown an increasing number of seniors abandoning Trump. An October NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed that trend accelerating: Trump was hemorrhaging support among registered senior voters, with 62 percent supporting Biden and only 35 percent supporting the president.

Trump won the senior vote by 7 points in 2016, so even a slight drop in support among older white voters, a cornerstone of his base, could have an enormous impact on the outcome of his re-election.

Read more here.

Young Latino voters in Florida could play crucial role in presidential election

660d ago / 12:30 AM UTC

While Joe Biden has a huge lead in national polls over President Trump among Latino voters, some young Latinos in the pivotal state of Florida say they see growing enthusiasm for the president there.

Pop phenom Lizzo campaigns for Biden in Michigan, urges young people to vote

660d ago / 11:27 PM UTC

Pop star Lizzo hit the campaign trail for Joe Biden on Friday in her home state of Michigan, a pivotal state in the 2020 presidential election. 

“I don’t think in terms of red and blue, I think in terms of right and wrong,” Lizzo, a Detroit native, told community members in Harper Woods, stressing the importance of voting.  “If you don’t like how things are going, you can vote that person out.” 

Biden has robust support from Black Americans as a whole but is struggling in polls with younger Black voters.  

Lizzo said that she does not take voting for granted because of the sacrifices previous generations made during the Civil Rights movement. The Grammy-winning singer also said that experience of being an American in recent years has been “traumatic” for and made the case for more laws that push for equality. 

“Your vote is literally your political voice,” she said. 

Trump hammers Biden over oil industry comments at campaign stop in Florida

660d ago / 11:08 PM UTC

President Trump hammered Joe Biden at a campaign stop in Florida on Friday, seizing on comments the Democratic nominee made at last night's debate about the future of fossil fuels

Biden promised Thursday night that he would “transition” the country away from oil and natural gas, which Trump saw as a major gaffe. 

In Florida, an important battleground state in which Biden is leading the president in polls, Trump argued that “Biden proved last night he’s not capable of being president.” He spoke at the massive The Villages retirement community, a strategic move since Trump is also struggling with seniors. 

“Biden admitted that he wants to abolish the oil industry. That wasn't too good,” Trump said. “I said, ‘Whoa, this is the big point of the evening.’”

Trump said Biden’s comments on energy could be “one of the worst mistakes in presidential debate history.” He attacked Biden for focusing too much on the pandemic. “All he talks about is Covid, Covid, Covid,” Trump said, and claimed that the country is rounding the corner “beautifully.”

 

TV ratings down for final Trump-Biden debate

660d ago / 10:35 PM UTC

About 63 million people tuned in to watch Thursday night’s final presidential debate between President Trump and Joe Biden on television, according to ratings data from Nielsen, down about 10 million viewers from their first one.

Ratings were down from the first presidential debate, which drew about 73.1 million viewers. The single vice presidential debate between Sen. Kamala Harris and Vice President Mike Pence had about 57.9 million people tuning in, making it the second-most-watched vice presidential debate.

Viewership was measured across 15 networks that carried the debate live as well as some digital streaming. Neither the 2016 nor the 2020 figures account for viewership on digital platforms like Facebook and YouTube. Nielsen only measures connected television and streaming viewership of programs that carry linear advertising so there’s no widely accepted metric that accounts for all the ways the debate could have been streamed.

The ratings drop follows similar declines for this year’s Republican and Democratic conventions. While viewership for the first presidential debate was higher, it was also down from 2016's first debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton, which had a record 84 million viewers.

Read more here.

So that would make it bigger than Biden's?

660d ago / 10:16 PM UTC

President Trump mocked Reuters White House reporter Jeff Mason on Friday for wearing “the biggest mask I’ve ever seen” during a call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before a mostly maskless audience in the Oval Office.

Trump mocked Joe Biden in their first debate for wearing, at the time, the biggest mask he had ever seen.

Trump had Netanyahu on the phone to announce a U.S.-brokered deal normalizing relations between Israel and Sudan and asked the Israeli leader if he thought “Sleepy Joe” could have made such a deal. Netanyahu declined to offer an opinion.

It's Joe Biden: The concert

660d ago / 9:09 PM UTC

The Biden campaign will host an eclectic star-studded virtual concert on Sunday night, with performers including A$AP Ferg, Cher, Jon Bon Jovi, Pink, Foo Fighters, Black Eyed Peas & Jennifer Hudson, Dave Matthews and Ciara.

The price of a ticket to the virtual “I Will Vote Concert” is any size donation to the campaign, according to the its website.

The event will also feature appearances by Biden, running mate Sen. Kamala Harris and their spouses, as well as an equally eclectic mix of “special guests” including Lin-Manuel Miranda, Amy Schumer, La La Anthony and Helen Mirren. It’s being hosted by comedian George Lopez and Ana Navarro.

Trump campaign, Nevada GOP sue to stop Las Vegas-area vote count

660d ago / 8:39 PM UTC

LAS VEGAS — The Trump campaign and Nevada Republicans asked a state judge on Friday to stop the count of Las Vegas-area mail-in ballots, alleging that “meaningful observation” of signature-checking is impossible in the state’s biggest and most Democratic-leaning county.

A lawsuit filed in state court in Carson City 10 days before the Nov. 3 election complains that observers haven’t been allowed close enough to workers and machines at the busy vote processing center to see whether ballots that get second- and third-step validation should be rejected.

It alleges that Clark County Registrar of Voters Joe Gloria failed to get proper approval from the secretary of state for his plan to accommodate observers, and seeks an immediate decision on a court order to “prohibit ... processing and counting ballots until the proper procedures are in place.”

Donald J. Trump for President campaign co-chairman in Nevada, former state Attorney General Adam Laxalt, said that it appeared that not enough ballots were being rejected. He cited state election data showing that more than 98% of mailed ballots received as of Thursday in Clark County had been accepted as valid.

“It’s hard to believe there’s only a 1% rejection rate,” Laxalt told the AP. “Once a signature is verified, no campaign has the ability to challenge that vote.”

Pennsylvania ballots can’t be tossed out over voters' signatures, court says

660d ago / 7:48 PM UTC
Image:
A voter drops off her ballot outside the Chester County Government Services Center, in West Chester, Pa., on Oct. 23, 2020.Matt Slocum / AP

Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously Friday on a key concern surrounding an avalanche of mailed ballots, prohibiting counties from rejecting them if the voter’s signature on it does not resemble the signature on the voter’s registration form.

Two Republican justices joined five Democratic justices in the decision.

The verdict was a victory for the state’s top election official, Kathy Boockvar, a Democrat who had asked the court to back her up in a legal dispute with President Donald Trump’s campaign and Republican lawmakers.

Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are locked in a battle to win Pennsylvania’s 20 electoral votes. With Democrats voting by mail at an almost 3-to-1 rate over Republicans, the prospect of disqualified ballots poses a greater threat to Biden’s candidacy.

Read the story.

Biden says Trump 'quit on you' and America during Covid-19 pandemic

660d ago / 7:46 PM UTC

Joe Biden on Friday summed up his case about how he’d do better than President Donald Trump at fighting the Covid-19 pandemic, repeating many of the attack lines he used during the presidential debate the previous night and providing additional details on how he’d try to implement a nationwide mask mandate.

Pointing to Trump’s comments at the final presidential debate Thursday night, Biden said the president had “diminished pain felt by so many Americans.”

“If this is success, what does failure look like? Biden said.

Speaking from Wilmington, Del., Biden accused Trump of having “quit on you, quit on your family” and “quit on America.”

Biden reiterated his plan to implement a national mask mandate by asking the governor of each state to require face masks — and expanded on that plan, saying that if governors refuse his request, he would then appeal directly to “the mayors” and ask them to put in place local mandates.

“I don’t want to shut down the economy, I want to shut down the virus,” he said. 

Dispute over Ohio mail ballot drop box limit ends as advocates drop suit

660d ago / 7:39 PM UTC

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The fight over Ohio’s limit on ballot drop boxes ended Friday after a coalition of voting rights groups opted to drop their lawsuit, leaving in place an election chief’s order that was derided by three separate courts.

The A. Philip Randolph Institute, League of Women Voters of Ohio and ACLU of Ohio made the decision after the federal appellate court in Cincinnati set a timetable last week that pushed further activity in the case past Election Day.

The dropped suit was a win for Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose, who issued the directive. It’s also a victory for Republican President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign, which joined LaRose in fighting to keep the restriction in place in a critical battleground state.

Continue reading.

What could happen if Biden flips the senior vote?

660d ago / 7:25 PM UTC

In the 2016 election, President Donald Trump was supported by 52 percent of  voters 65 and older. But polls show his support among seniors is slipping.

In the latest SurveyMonkey/Axios poll, it's Joe Biden who is the choice for 53 percent of voters 65 and up. 

NBC News's Swing the Election turnout simulator calculates that — even if voters in other age groups vote exactly the same way they did in 2016 — Biden would be on track to pick up 307 electoral votes and flip four states from 2016 if he holds on to the senior vote.

Swing the Election Scenario: Biden wins 53 percent of seniors
NBC News's Swing the Election turnout simulator calculates that Joe Biden would win up 307 electoral votes if he holds on to the senior vote.

Visit the NBC News Swing the Election page to explore how other changes in turnout and support would affect the map.

South Carolina Democrat Jamie Harrison is trying to turn South Carolina blue

660d ago / 7:10 PM UTC

Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison joins Katy Tur to discuss the latest in his South Carolina campaign that has raised historic levels of donations.

'It has to be replaced': Trump seizes on Biden's oil industry comments. But will it work?

660d ago / 6:50 PM UTC
Image: Joe Biden
Joe Biden speaks with the press before boarding his plane at Nashville International Airport on Oct. 22, 2020 in Nashville, Tenn.Angela Weiss / AFP - Getty Images

President Trump's re-election campaign, eager for a debate moment that could jolt the closing days of the race, has targeted Joe Biden's comment that he would "transition" away from oil and pivot to renewable energy.

In post-debate statements, Trump's team sought to portray Biden's remark as a game-changing gaffe that could damage the former vice president's political fortunes in oil-producing states such as Pennsylvania, Texas and Oklahoma.

"This probably will put the nail in the coffin for Joe Biden in Pennsylvania," Trump campaign senior adviser Jason Miller told reporters Friday. "This is really devastating."

Read the full story.

Battleground postal delays persist with mail voting underway

660d ago / 5:21 PM UTC

U.S. Postal Service records show delivery delays have persisted across the country as millions of Americans are voting by mail, raising the possibility of ballots being rejected because they arrive too late.

Postal data through Oct. 9, the latest numbers available, show nearly all the agency's delivery regions missing its target of having at least 95 percent of first-class mail arrive within five days. Parts of the presidential battleground states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio fell short of delivery goals by wide margins as the agency struggles to regain its footing after a tumultuous summer.

The districts that included the major urban areas and their suburbs in each of those states all performed below the national average for on-time delivery, with the area around Pittsburgh in western Pennsylvania the lone exception.

Continue reading. 

Trump hasn't met with task force in months, unlikely to prior to election

660d ago / 5:17 PM UTC

President Donald Trump has not attended a White House coronavirus task force meeting in months and is not expected to do so in the final days before the election, according to an administration official.

Although nationwide Covid-19 infections reached a new high on Thursday, the president has decided to focus on his re-election campaign and continue a rigorous rally schedule in the closing stretch.

The director of the National Institutes of Health, Francis Collins, said recently it has been “quite some time” since the president met with the group of agency heads navigating the pandemic.

“Obviously it's a bit of a chaotic time with the election,” Collins told NPR. “There's not a direct connection between the task force members and the president as there was a few months ago. But this seems to be a different time with different priorities.” 

Read more on this story here.

'Wages' was most searched issue on Google during final Trump-Biden debate

660d ago / 5:02 PM UTC
Image: Donald Trump And Joe Biden Participate In Final Debate Before Presidential Election
President Donald Trump and Joe Biden participate in the final presidential debate at Belmont University on October 22, 2020 in Nashville, Tenn.Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

The most-searched issue on Google in all but six states during the final debate between Republican President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden was wages, underscoring the importance of the issue to voters in the 2020 election.

And the searches spiked just as NBC moderator Kristen Welker asked about the minimum wage, a pocketbook issue affecting millions of Americans on which there is a sharp contrast between the candidates: Biden wants to raise the federal minimum wage while Trump wants to defer to states.

Read the full story.

Trump pulls in $26 million in online donations around final debate

660d ago / 4:26 PM UTC

The Trump campaign and its joint fundraising committees raised $26 million around last night’s debate, its largest digital fundraising day ever, according to the campaign.

“President Trump’s stellar performance at last night’s debate motivated supporters to contribute in a historic way,” Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel said in a statement. 

With less than two weeks to go, that's a bit of good news for the campaign, which has been bleeding cash

Joe Biden went into October with $177 million on hand, dwarfing Trump's $63 million, according to Federal Election Commission filings. 

Obama to hold drive-in rally in Miami on Saturday

660d ago / 4:22 PM UTC

Former President Barack Obama is scheduled to hold a drive-in rally for the Biden campaign in Miami on Saturday. 

The campaign said the event will take place in North Miami, home to many Black Americans and Haitian immigrants. Obama held his first in-person event for Biden on Wednesday in Philadelphia. 

Trump is also expected to be in Florida on Saturday, where he's expected to cast an early vote in person after holding campaign events in the state Friday night.

Republican House candidate's website attacks critic for going to 'work for non-white males'

660d ago / 4:18 PM UTC

A House candidate considered a rising star in the GOP launched a campaign attack website accusing a critic of going "to work for non-white males, like Cory Booker, who aims to ruin white males running for office."

The language on Madison Cawthorn's "Moe Taxes" website was changed Thursday night after it was first reported by the website The Bulwark.

Cawthorn blamed poor "syntax" for the racist message, which he said didn't "convey my intended meaning."

Continue reading

Voters could remove racist phrases from Alabama Constitution

660d ago / 3:51 PM UTC
Image: The Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery on Nov. 17, 2017.
The Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery on Nov. 17, 2017.Drew Angerer / Getty Images file

Alabama voters once again have the chance to remove the racist language of Jim Crow from the state's constitution, which was approved in 1901 to enshrine white supremacy as state law.

Courts have long since struck down legalized segregation, but past attempts to strip the offensive phrases have failed. Even though no organized opposition to the measure has emerged this time, some worry that conservative backlash to the Black Lives Matter movement could quash the proposal, which qualified for the ballot months before the nationwide demonstrations that occurred in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd.

A measure on the Nov. 3 ballot would allow the state to recompile its 119-year-old constitution in a process supporters say would remove a lingering stain from the state's era of racial segregation and the legalized oppression of Black people.

Read the story.

Electric avenue: 'Trump 2020' sign hung on live wires above Massachusetts street

660d ago / 3:23 PM UTC

A handmade "Trump 2020" sign was strung on live wires over a street in Wilmington, Massachusetts, before it was taken down early Friday, police said.

"Not only did they run the risk of electrocution, but the low hanging sign caused a hazard to passing motorists," Wilmington police said in a statement.

While police don't know exactly when the cardboard-carved letters and numbers went up near 147 Main St., investigators believe they were placed in early morning hours before they were quickly taken down, authorities said.

While Trump lost deep blue Massachusetts big in 2016, this bedroom community 20 miles north of Boston was fought to a virtual draw four years ago.

 

Election Confessions from the night of the presidential debate

660d ago / 3:20 PM UTC

Here's some of what readers had to say about the candidates and the country last night:

Confession: "Still believe the country is a better place due to his administration. Previous 8 yrs were nothing but "Hype and no change""

Health care fact check

660d ago / 3:00 PM UTC

NBC's Sahil Kapur breaks down and fact-checks claims made by President Trump and Joe Biden on their plans for health care during the final presidential debate.

Muhlenberg poll: Biden leads Trump by 7 points among likely voters in Pennsylvania

660d ago / 1:58 PM UTC

Biden holds a 7 percentage point lead over Trump among likely voters in Pennsylvania, according to a new Muhlenberg College/Morning Call poll released Friday morning.

Biden leads with 51 percent of likely voters in the state, while Trump lags behind him at 44 percent, the poll found.

Trump won Pennsylvania in the 2016 presidential race by less than one percentage point, scoring roughly 48.2 percent of the vote.

The president is keen to repeat his victory in the Keystone State, but he could face an uphill battle as a majority of likely voters there — 51 percent, according to the poll — believe he does not deserve reelection.

However, the poll found that Trump's supporters are more likely to say they are enthusiastic about voting for the president (79 percent), compared to Pennsylvanians who said they planned to vote for the former vice president (51 percent).

'Rocket' the vote

660d ago / 1:54 PM UTC

Astronaut Kate Rubins cast her vote in the upcoming U.S. election from a secure voting booth on the International Space Station.

ANALYSIS: At final debate, Biden shows Trump what it means to be a politician

660d ago / 1:43 PM UTC
Image: Donald Trump And Joe Biden Participate In Final Debate Before Presidential Election
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

In the final two weeks before Election Day, President Donald Trump is placing an awfully big bet on the premise that casting his opponent as an insider has the same value it did four years ago.

He repeatedly hurled the "politician" charge at Democratic nominee Joe Biden in their final debate Thursday night. Biden's entire campaign is a celebration of the virtues of old-school politics.

"We should be talking about your families, but that’s the last thing he wants to talk about," Biden said from the debate stage here at Belmont University. It was, as Trump noted, the pivot of a practiced politician away from personal invective and toward the public's needs.

"I ran because of you," an agitated Trump said. "I’m looking at you now, you’re a politician."

Read the full analysis.

Pence casts his in-person early vote in Indiana

660d ago / 1:39 PM UTC

INDIANAPOLIS — Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence voted early in-person at the Marion County Clerk’s office Friday morning. Wearing dark blue face masks and carrying their ballots, they both approached the ballot box and then one at a time dropped their ballots into the slot and flashed a thumbs up and waved to the cameras.

“Great honor,” Pence told reporters after casting his vote. “And great to be back home again. It really is.”

The choice by Pence to vote early in-person breaks with past patterns of how Pence has voted and comes after President Donald Trump has for months cast doubt on voting options ahead of Election Day, particularly mail-in voting. 

President Trump confirmed to reporters Thursday night that he too will be voting early in-person while in Florida this weekend, a break from his own past history of voting absentee by mail.

“President Trump and I want to make it easy to vote but hard to cheat,” Pence said to a local Ohio news station earlier this week. “The principle of one person, one vote is literally at the center of our democracy and President Trump and I and our team are absolutely committed to protecting the integrity of the vote of every single person.”

Speaking in a local interview in Wisconsin following campaign events last month, Pence was asked directly whether he would accept the results of the election.

“President Trump and I believe we're gonna win this election,” Pence said. “But we will accept free and fair election results. No doubt about it.”

FIRST READ: Final Trump-Biden debate finally provides clarity on the issues

, , and

660d ago / 1:22 PM UTC
President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at the final presidential debate at Belmont University on Oct. 22, 2020 in Nashville, Tenn.
Jim Bourg / Pool via Getty Images

Fewer insults. Fewer interruptions. And a lot less name-calling.

Unlike the first presidential debate, last night’s second — and final — showdown perfectly distilled the presidential candidates’ positions on the most important issues, giving voters some important clarity.

First Read has more.

Judge tosses Trump challenge to New Jersey mail-in ballots

660d ago / 1:16 PM UTC
Image:
Richard Lynch drops his mail-in ballot into a drop box in Hackensack, N.J., on July 7, 2020.Seth Wenig / AP file

A federal judge on Thursday dismissed a lawsuit by President Donald Trump’s campaign that had sought to stop New Jersey’s mail-in ballot program.

U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp’s opinion was foreshadowed when he rejected the GOP’s request for an injunction to stop the program on Oct. 6 and wrote the plaintiffs “fail to establish they are likely to succeed on the merits of their claims.”

In a court filing last month, the campaign alleged the state’s ballot procedures violated the Constitution and opened the door to widespread voter fraud, including that ballots mailed after Election Day would still be counted. Shipp wrote Thursday that the fraud claims rest on “highly speculative fear.

Read the story.

McCaskill and Lowry rate the debate

660d ago / 12:30 PM UTC

Former Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill said Joe Biden's job was to "hold his voters and find a few more" and did just that. Rich Lowry, editor of the conservative National Review, said Trump "gave Republicans something to feel good about."

Debate fact check: What was true, and what wasn't

and

660d ago / 12:18 PM UTC
Image: Joe Biden and President Donald Trump
Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

President Trump and Joe Biden took to the debate stage at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, on Thursday. In the final presidential debate of 2020, they covered a wide range of topics in a generally more substantive way — thanks in part to fewer interruptions because of microphones being muted for initial responses.

NBC News fact-checked Trump and Biden throughout the night. Click here for NBC's list of fact checks.

For complete coverage and analysis, visit Thursday's live blog.

Debate tracker: The final 2020 presidential debate, by the numbers

660d ago / 12:12 PM UTC

The first debate, to put it politely, was raucousThe vice presidential debate was placid by comparison, and the second presidential debate was canceled.

This debate, which was preceded by chatter about what the effect of a mute button would be, the number of attacks each candidate threw the other's way eclipsed the number of interruptions by more than a 4-to-1 margin.

See the rest of the numbers on the debate topics, time spent on each one, the attacks and the interruptions.

4 takeaways from the last presidential debate of 2020

660d ago / 12:07 PM UTC

It was probably as normal as things could get this election cycle.

After the last faceoff turned into a name-calling shouting match, Thursday night's presidential debate, moderated by NBC News correspondent Kristen Welker, resembled a much more traditional matchup and provided one the clearest contrasts yet between President Trump and his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, on everything from race to the environment.

Here are four key takeaways.

Slovenian PM endorses Trump

660d ago / 11:55 AM UTC

Joe Biden “would be one of the weakest presidents in history,” Slovenia’s prime minister tweeted Friday, as he endorsed President Donald Trump to win a second term in the White House. 

Janez Janša is an anti-immigration hardliner who has been compared to Trump. Trump's wife, Melania, was born in what is now Slovenia.

“We respect [the] difficult, tragic personal life of @JoeBiden and some of his political achievements years ago,” Janša wrote in a tweet.  

But he said that if elected today, Biden “would be one of the weakest presidents in history,” when “a free world desperately needs STRONG #US as never before.” 

He then called on Trump to “Go, win.”

More than 300 military families sign letter in support of Joe Biden

660d ago / 11:32 AM UTC

More than 300 military families released a letter Friday morning supporting former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign. The letter includes several prominent members of the military community.

"When the White House threatens to use the military to ‘dominate’ the streets, he pits our service members against their peaceful fellow citizens and the First Amendment," the letter states. "When our foreign policy abandons allies we have fought side-by-side with for years – as happened with the Kurds in Syria – Donald Trump makes a mockery of the loyalty that we prize." 

Trump has touted his support among members of the military, a voting bloc that helped him win swing states like North Carolina in 2016.

Trump says he plans to vote in person in Florida on Saturday

660d ago / 11:03 AM UTC

Trump told reporters following the debate Thursday night that he plans to cast his 2020 vote in person on Saturday.

“I’ll be in Florida. We’re doing rallies. And then I’m going to vote in person Saturday,” Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One as they headed back to Washington. 

Trump has been critical of voting by mail, falsely claiming that it leads to massive fraud. He did, however, vote by mail during Florida's primary this year.

Nikki Haley to campaign for Trump in Pennsylvania

660d ago / 11:02 AM UTC

Nikki Haley, who previously served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under Trump, will host several campaign events for the president on Saturday in Pennsylvania. 

Trump's campaign announced early Friday that she would be a special guest and appear at events at an Indian Voices for Trump fireside chat in Norristown as well as two events in Reading and West Brandywine. Haley served in the administration from January 2017 through December 2018.

Haley previously served as the governor of South Carolina.

Dialed down, Biden,Trump clash on Covid-19 response, issues in final debate

660d ago / 10:55 AM UTC

The mics were off but the gloves mostly stayed on.

The final debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden was a departure from the rancorous first clash in Cleveland. Instead, the two presidential hopefuls sparred on the federal Covid-19 response, health care, immigration policy and race.

With polls showing Biden holding a sizable national lead — with Election Day just two weeks away and over 42 million ballots already cast — Trump delivered no obvious knockout blows and the Democrat appeared to clear his final major hurdle with no major stumble.

Read more here.

Highlights from the final 2020 presidential face-off

660d ago / 10:55 AM UTC

Watch highlights from the final 2020 presidential debate as President Trump and Joe Biden faced off on Covid-19, criminal justice, immigration, China and more.

Who won the Trump-Biden debate? Experts grade the candidates

660d ago / 10:55 AM UTC

President Trump was the most improved performer at Thursday's debate, but a panel of debate experts told NBC News that Joe Biden was more effective with his arguments.

The three experts all agreed the faceoff was more informative than the chaotic first debate in Cleveland last month, but one noted, "That's a very low bar."

While Trump's strategy of interrupting less and letting Biden speak more in hopes of provoking a gaffe from the former vice president was a sound strategy, the experts said Biden didn't make the type of major mistake Trump probably needed to change the race.

Here are their report cards.