This is VOA news. Via remote, I'm Michael Brown. Two pivotal US Senate runoff elections in the southern state of Georgia were too close to calm as voting stretched into early Wednesday morning. The outcomes of (nikoli) closely watch contests will determine political control in the senate during the first two years of President-elect Joe Biden's term in the White House. But with roughly 98% of the vote counted in the two contests, no one was claiming victory or conceding defeat, although the votes left to be counted appear to be in the regions of the state that with heavy democratic voter turnout. Currently, Republicans controlled the 100 seat Senate with a 52-48 advantage needing to win one of the two Georgia contests to maintain their advantage and act as a bulwark against Biden legislative proposals after he is inaugurated on January 20th.
US President Donald Trump is expected to address supporters at a rally near the White House later today. The rally comes on the same day a congressional vote is expected to certify the electoral college results, giving Joe Biden the Presidency. Trump is seeking support for his last-ditch efforts to overturn his loss to Biden. The rallies have police on alert for potential street confrontations.
Japan is preparing to issue a state of emergency over the coronavirus pandemic for Tokyo and three nearby areas as cases continue to surge around the nation. Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary said in the news conference Wednesday the government was considering taking effective and strong measures to tackle the risk posed by people dining out. Officials have said schools, fitness clubs, theaters are likely to stay open with social distancing measures. Japan's Health Ministry said 240,000 cases have been reported and more than 3600 deaths nationwide. Via remote, this is VOA news.