WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBS News) — The race for the White House narrowed early Wednesday morning to hinge on a handful of crucial battleground states that remained too close to call. President Trump exceeded expectations and captured several large swing states that Joe Biden had hoped would solidify his path to victory, but millions of early votes remained outstanding.

Particularly in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan, the number of legally cast, but yet-to-be-counted ballots was boosting Democrats’ hopes of overcoming deficits among voters who headed to the polls on Election Day. Absentee ballot returns from Milwaukee County in Wisconsin early Wednesday gave Biden a slim lead in that state.

CBS News has projected the president to win Ohio’s 18 electoral votes, delivering him a significant victory in a state he unexpectedly captured four years ago. He also won Florida, driven by higher support among Hispanic voters and his Republican base, and Texas, where Democrats had hoped to make inroads with an electorate that is increasingly diverse.

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