Trump Claims Victory, Says He Will Dispute Election Count At Supreme Court

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Donald Trump on Wednesday claimed he had won the US election, despite the final not yet being given, and said he would go to the Supreme Court to dispute the counting of votes.

“We did this election,” Trump said in an extraordinary speech from the ceremonial East Room of the White House. “This is a fraud on the American public.”

The Republican, who according to initial is in a neck-and-neck race with Democrat Joe Biden, said he would go to court and “we all voting to stop.”

He appeared to mean stopping the counting of mail-in ballots which can be legally accepted by state election boards after Tuesday’s election, provided they were sent in time.

The issue could become crucial in the states still tabulating votes in a very tight contest.

Democrats are widely thought to have cast mail-in ballots than Trump’s .

Trump made premature claim — unprecedented for a US — shortly after 2:20 a.m. (0720 GMT), as states across the huge country worked to count the votes.

A record number of ballots were cast before Election Day, totaling than 100 , due to fears of congregating in polling stations in person during the .

Trump began with a sometimes rambling expressing disappointment that he had believed he was on a road to certain but that then stopped coming in and the Republican-friendly state of Arizona was called for Biden.

“We were getting ready for a big celebration. We were winning everything and all of a sudden it was just called ,” Trump said without fully explaining what he meant.

“This is a fraud on the American public. This is an embarrassment to our country. We were getting ready to this election. Frankly, we did this election,” he said.

Trump said “we will be going to the US Supreme Court. We all voting to stop.”

There was immediate backlash from Trump’s own Republican backers.

“It’s a bad strategic decision. It’s a bad political decision,” Chris Christie, a Trump advisor said of the middle-of-the-night speech.