US election live: Joe Biden wins and says ‘It’s time for America to unite’ | US news

Bernie Sanders offers congratulations

Today so far

Fiji’s prime minister got in first, gambling on congratulating Joe Biden before the presidential election had been called, slipping in a plea for action on climate change.

But once the result was official, congratulations came pouring in from around the world. Donald Trump’s allies, critics and reluctant partners had all been following the vote counting, weighing up the impact of a radical change of direction expected from Washington under Biden.

Many of those congratulating the new president-elect and his running mate Kamala Harris took the opportunity to bolster ties by underlining their connection to America. Among the first was Canada’s prime minister, Justin Trudeau. He said: “We share a relationship that’s unique on the world stage. I’m really looking forward to working together and building on that with you both.”

Boris Johnson, who has been a close ally of Trump, took a little longer, but about an hour after the election was called put out a message reminding Biden of the “special relationship” that usually means so much more to London than Washington. He said: “America is our closest ally and I look forward to working closely together on our shared priorities.”

From Dublin the congratulations came with a nod to Biden’s Irish heritage, with his interest in the country particularly important at a time of fears that the Good Friday agreement could be threatened by Brexit.

“I want to congratulate the new president elect of the US. Joe Biden has been a true friend of this nation throughout his life and I look forward to working with him in the years ahead,” wrote the Irish prime minister Micheál Martin.

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