Donald Trump claimed wins in the crucial battleground states of Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina – a string of wins in swing states across the map that all but erased Hillary Clinton’s path to victory.
Trump was also declared the winner in Iowa, in a night of upsets in favor of the Republican.
With the Pennsylvania victory, declared just after 1:30 a.m., he was just six electoral votes short of the number needed to secure the presidency.
Clinton won Virginia, another pivotal state fiercely contested by the two candidates, and was awarded a win in Colorado.
Trump was also called the winner in 21 other states as the pair raced to clinch a majority of electoral votes and with it the presidency, while Clinton took 15 other states plus Washington, D.C.
California, New York, Illinois, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Mexico, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, and Delaware went for Clinton, who racked up 215 electoral votes, according to projections by the Associated Press.
Georgia, Texas, Wyoming, North and South Dakota, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Indiana, Kentucky, Kansas, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, Montana, Missouri, Idaho, Utah, and West Virginia were called for Trump, giving him 264 electoral votes.
In Florida, with its 29 electoral votes, Trump pulled off a narrow win, with 49% of the vote to Clinton’s 48% with 99% of precincts reporting. He notched a more comfortable victory in Ohio, which has 18 electoral votes, with 53% of the vote to Clinton’s 42% with 77% of precincts in.
Virginia’s 13 electoral votes went to Clinton with a 48% to 46% lead.
Trump also held narrow leads in Michigan, Wisconsin, and New Hampshire.
A candidate must win 270 electoral votes to claim the election.
The latest votes will come from Alaska, where the last polls close at 1 a.m. eastern time.
Trump and Clinton were set for a nail-biting night awaiting results before addressing their supporters at Manhattan venues within walking distance of each other — Clinton at the Jacob Javits Center and Trump at the New York Hilton Midtown. It’s the first time since 1944 both presidential candidates spent election night in the city.
Earlier in the day, Trump was greeted by boos and shouts by crowds outside his Midtown Manhattan poll site when he showed up to cast his vote. Clinton got a warmer welcome when she showed up to vote near her home in Chappaqua, New York, in Westchester County.
A Trump win would mark an unprecedented rejection of the establishment and usual norms of politics.
Even on Election Day, Trump was pressing his claim in a series of interviews that the contest was rigged and would not commit to accepting the result.
“We’re going to see how things play out today and hopefully they will play out well and hopefully we won’t have to worry about it,” he said on Fox News. Later in the interview he said “it’s largely a rigged system.”
Clinton, who closed out her campaign with a Philadelphia rally with Bruce Springsteen and Barack and Michelle Obama Monday night, told reporters after voting that it was “the most humbling feeling” to cast a ballot for herself “because so many people are counting on the outcome of this election.”