No matter which candidate wins the presidency there's likely a long and bumpy road ahead when it comes to governing: things like passing a coronavirus stimulus bill and, equally as important, unifying the country.
"However the presidential election is decided, there's a very good chance we're going to have a divided government situation," said Bruce Cain, Political Science Professor at Stanford University.
How will the next president overcome the obstacles of a divided government and a divided country? These questions are paramount as either party, at best, will likely only control two of the three branches of government.
One of the biggest immediate challenges for President Trump if he wins a second term or former Vice President Joe Biden immediately after the inauguration is how to pass an overdue coronavirus relief package.
Cain said it will be far from easy.
"There's a fundamental disagreement as to whether or not we should be bailing out state and local governments. There's a fundamental disagreement about whether more of the money should go to businesses or should go to people who have problems paying their rent and have unemployment difficulties." he said.
Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, addressed passing a coronavirus bill Thursday on Good Morning America.
"There's already talk about can we get pandemic relief package done immediately when we go back? I think those are the kinds of things we should be working on to give Americans faith that people can work together," said Klobuchar.
Even bigger than government working together is the challenge of coming together as a country - winning over the hearts and minds of the American people to unify, not divide.
Cain suggests it starts with acknowledging we are more divided ideologically within the Democrat and Republican parties and even racial and ethnic groups than polls showed leading up to Election Day.
"The politics has to catch up with the reality that you cannot treat all these groups as monolithic. And you have to treat both parties as coalitions and some parts of those coalitions will agree with you and you have to court them, and some parts of that coalition you have no shot," said Cain.
RELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- LIVE RESULTS: A look at battleground states, CA, Bay Area
- Live running updates on presidential election, CA, Bay Area
- Live updates as Trump, Biden race to 270 electoral votes
- These are the paths to victory for Biden and Trump
- How the electoral college works in the election between Trump, Biden
- Here's how presidential transition process works after an election
- When will we know who won? Here's what could and what won't happen
- Will loser of the 2020 presidential election accept the result and concede?
- CA propositions: Election results for the 2020 ballot measures
- 2020 CA election results by county, propositions, electoral college votes
- Map shows biggest Trump, Biden donors in SF Bay Area
- Map: These Bay Area precincts voted for Donald Trump in 2016
- Here's the last day to mail in your ballot in California
- What is voter suppression?
- Here's where Joe Biden stands on key 2020 issues
- Here's where Donald Trump stands on key 2020 issues
- Everything you don't know about Kamala Harris' San Francisco Bay Area roots
- How to pronounce Kamala Harris' name and what it means