Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Gary Peters is projected to hold Michigan's U.S. Senate seat in 2020 election

November 4, 2020
Headshot of U.S. Sen. Gary Peters. Courtesy of peters.senate.gov.
Headshot of U.S. Sen. Gary Peters. Courtesy of peters.senate.gov. —

Current sitting U.S. Senator Gary Peters is projected to keep Michigan's U.S. Senate seat, winning a total of 2,683,325 votes over James's 2,623,738 votes with 98% reporting.

Peters won Ingham County by a large margin, winning a total of 92,384 votes to James's 48,375 votes. Peters had a stronger turnout of absentee voters compared to James — totaling 68,053 in just absentee votes alone in the county.

"I am sincerely honored that the voters of Michigan have once again put their trust and confidence in me to represent them in the United States Senate," Peters said in a press release. "As we look ahead, I am energized to keep working to move our state forward and continue putting Michigan first."

Statewide, the margin between Peters and James was much closer throughout the vote counting process. On Wednesday evening, just one hour after Biden was projected to win Michigan, Peters and James were split only by a 1.1% margin in Peter's favor — just a 59,587 vote difference.

Prior to the election, Peters was ahead of James with 46% of the vote, compared to James's 42%, according to polls on  FiveThirtyEight from Citizen Data.

The race was projected to be close and tough even before workers counted the ballots. Both campaigns regularly released negative advertisements about the other campaign leading up to Election Day.

The James campaign accused Peters of cutting Medicare funding and supporting raising the age requirement on Social Security in an Oct. 22 press release. The Peters campaign accused James of "failing to answer basic questions in local TV interviews."

James retweeted a post that falsely declared the candidate's victory before the race had been called.

Following that, President Donald Trump tweeted out that Democrats "found votes" to take away James' victory. The votes in question are millions of absentee votes that hadn't been counted at that time.

Trump also declared victory prematurely in multiple battleground states, including Pennsylvania, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina and Michigan during a 2:30 a.m. presser. Some of these states reported under 50% votes counted at that time.

The Senate race is one of the last races in Michigan to be called, following over 24 hours of vote tallying throughout the state.

Though this isn't an excessive amount of time to count votes, the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit with Michigan Court of Claims to halt vote counting after not being provided with access to several counting locations, according to Trump 2020 Campaign Manager Bill Stepien.

Currently, Peters' victory projects 46 seats for the Democrats in the U.S. Senate and 48 amount of seats for Republicans, giving the Senate a Republican majority.

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