North Carolina Called for Donald Trump

North Carolina finally was called for President Donald Trump on Friday afternoon. Trump's victory came 10 days after Election Day and followed former Vice President Joe Biden being declared president-elect.

The latest count showed Trump receiving 50 percent of the state's vote to Biden's 48.7 percent. With an estimated 99 percent of the vote tabulated, Trump was declared the winner by 73,635 votes.

Biden was forecast to win 48.9 percent of the vote as of October 30, while Trump was expected to receive 47 percent.

Several individual polls gave Biden a lead ranging between 1 and 5 points, often putting him at a statistical tie with the president. North Carolina has historically favored Republican presidential candidates, opting for the GOP nominee in 10 of the past 12 election cycles.

Trump won North Carolina with a little less than 50 percent of the vote in 2016, beating Hillary Clinton by 3.6 percentage points, building on Mitt Romney's victory over President Barack Obama in the state in 2012.

The state broke the pattern only to vote for Obama in 2008 and Jimmy Carter in 1976, after Richard Nixon was embroiled in the Watergate scandal.

Republican Thom Tillis followed Trump's fortunes in the state as he held his seat after a tough campaign battle against the Democratic contender Cal Cunningham. Tillis won a second term with 48.7 percent of the vote to Cunningham's 46.9 percent.

Ahead of election day, battleground polls from the state seemed to indicate that the race for Tillis' seat would be a closely fought contest. One survey released by Siena College and The New York Times on October 29 found Cunningham held a 3-point lead over Tillis among likely voters in the state.

Another survey published by SurveyUSA two days earlier found the Democratic challenger held the same lead over the GOP incumbent, with 48 percent of voters backing his insurgent campaign.

Cook Political Report analysts also rated the Senate election a "toss-up" contest only four days before polling day.

North Carolina voters also have tended to favor Republican candidates for the Senate over the past two decades. Senator Richard Burr was elected to a third term in 2016, having first been sent to the upper chamber in 2004.

Tillis also was favored over Democratic Senator Kay Hagan when he won for her seat in the 2014 mid-term elections by about 50,000 votes.

Donald Trump election North Carolina Joe Biden
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives for a Make America Great Again rally at Hickory Regional Airport in Hickory, North Carolina, on November 1, 2020. BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images