Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. was elected the 46th president of the United States, pledging to restore democratic normalcy and a spirit of national unity to confront raging health and economic crises, and making Donald J. Trump a one-term president after four years of turmoil in the White House.
The win of Mr. Biden amounted to Mr. Trump’s repudiation by millions of voters exhausted by his divisive actions and dysfunctional administration, and was delivered by an unlikely coalition of women, people of color, old and young, and a sliver of disaffected Republicans. Mr. Trump is just the third elected president to lose re-election since the Second World War and the first in more than a quarter-century.
The result also provided a history-making moment for Mr. Biden’s running mate, Senator Kamala Harris of California, who will become the first woman to serve as vice president.
With his victory, Mr. Biden, who turns 78 later this month, fulfilled his decades long dream to become the oldest person elected president in his third White House bid. Mr. Biden will lead a country and a Democratic Party that has become much more ideological since his arrival in the capital in 1973, a cornerstone of Washington who was first elected in the midst of the Watergate scandal and who favors political compromise over war.
He proposed a Progressive mainstream agenda, but it was less his political platform than his biography to which many people were gravitating. A half-century after his first campaign, seeking the nation’s highest office, Mr. Biden, a candidate in the late autumn of his career, posed his life of setback and regeneration to voters as a parable for a wounded country.
Appearing Saturday night before supporters at a drive-in rally in Wilmington, Del., Mr. Biden claimed the presidency and called on the nation to reunite after what he described as a toxic political interlude, speaking against the din of enthusiastic honking.