Washington, DC – A festive ambiance took over the streets outdoors the White House on Saturday, as 1000’s of jubilant Joe Biden supporters honked automobile horns, banged on pots and cheered to rejoice the Democratic candidate’s victory within the United States elections.
“I could dance and scream all day long,” Bernadette Etienne, a retired translator, informed Al Jazeera from Black Lives Matter Plaza.
“There is so much misery to expel, so much hatred to get rid of,” Etienne stated. “It’s been four horrible nightmarish years.”
The vigorous crowd of individuals, most of whom wore masks as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, danced, performed music and drank champagne straight from bottles.
Streets have been closed to visitors within the US capital as massive crowds of individuals stored arriving to the sound of automobile horns and cowbells. Some waved US and LGBTQ flags. Many wore Black Lives Matter T-shirts.
The Associated Press declared Biden the winner of the tightly contested election on Saturday morning, after days of ready. The former US vice chairman is predicted to take the reins of a deeply divided nation that’s struggling to comprise a pandemic that has killed greater than 236,000 Americans.
“I was getting ready for this day for a long time,” Andrew Hasson, who joined the group outdoors the White House, informed Al Jazeera. “This week was super stressful just waiting for the results to come in, but this is a great feeling and DC feels alive again.”
Trump supporters have been noticeably absent from the scene outdoors the White House, although that’s unsurprising: Washington, DC is a Democratic stronghold the place over 93 p.c of individuals voted for Biden.
Trump voters protested in different components of the nation, refusing to simply accept defeat and pushing unfounded theories that widespread voter fraud was “stealing” Trump’s second time period in workplace.
Trump has up to now refused to concede and has promised to problem the consequence. But authorized specialists say Trump’s accusations of fraud are unfounded and are unlikely to succeed.
“I think there will be a period in the US and around the world of relief and celebration and rightfully so, and then a period of healing and bringing the country together again,” stated Brice Hall, who was wrapped in an American flag.
Trump’s time in workplace was characterised by harsh immigration insurance policies, together with a ban stopping residents of a number of Muslim-majority international locations from coming into the US, in addition to withdrawal from a number of worldwide agreements and a refusal to sentence white supremacists.
“I’m overjoyed,” stated Brown Warren, an immigration lawyer who got here with buddies to rejoice.
“I personally have seen how Donald Trump’s policies have very negatively impacted not only immigration law, but this country as a whole,” she stated from behind a blue masks. “So it’s very exciting to think about how the next year could look like moving forward without Donald Trump as a president.”
Elsewhere in DC, residents stood on their balconies and gathered on rooftops to cheer.
In a press release on Saturday, Biden stated it was time for the nation “to unite and to heal”.
“With the campaign over, it’s time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation,” he stated. “There’s nothing we can’t do if we do it together.”
Biden’s working mate, Kamala Harris, can be making historical past. She is the primary Black girl and the primary particular person of South Asian descent to develop into vice chairman.
In Black Lives Matter Plaza, which has seen intense protests over the summer time demanding racial equality, some have been hugging and crying, and others have been jubilant whereas they screamed and pumped their fists within the air. Many carried indicators studying, “Bye Don”.
Joelle Freelander, who got here with a number of of her buddies to rejoice, stated she felt relieved and hopeful that with Biden as president, Trump’s insurance policies, in addition to his rhetoric, would come to an finish.
“Trump really divided the country,” Freelander stated whereas holding a champagne bottle.
“This may not be how everyone feels right now but the messaging that Biden gives when he speaks about uniting versus stoking the flames, is a very hopeful feeling and it’s a step in the right direction,” she stated.
“We’re going to be partying all night.”