US Election 2020

US Election 2020: what has Biden said about Trump's refusal to concede?

President-elect Joe Biden has given comment for the first time on Donald Trump’s extraordinary decision not to accept the result of the vote.

US Election 2020: what has Biden said about Trump's refusal to concede?
ANGELA WEISS AFP

When asked in a press conference yesterday what he would say to Americans anxious about the fact that Trump is yet to concede the presidency, Joe Biden called it frankly “an embarrassment,” adding, “it will not help the president’s legacy.”

He also expressed hope that even the many Americans who voted for Trump in this election were ready to come together and that the country could be pulled out of the age of “bitter politics” that the US has seen for the last seven years.

Speaking from Wilmington, Delaware, Joe Biden demonstrated confidence in America’s democracy, saying "at the end of the day, you know, it's all going to come to fruition on January 20."

Biden has been speaking with foreign leaders in preparation to take office, taking phone calls on Tuesday with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel among others.

Referring to those calls, Biden said “I'm letting them know that America is back. We're going to be back in the game."

Donald Trump still in denial on election defeat

Meanwhile Trump tweeted that he will ultimately win the presidency in spite of wisdom to the contrary from all new agencies, including the usually Trump-favouring Fox News.

None of the election results have yet been certified, although this routine process, which will be complete by 20 November, won’t alter results by any significant amount. Trump was projected to win Alaska’s three electoral college votes today, leaving his current tally of total votes in the electoral college as 217 to Biden’s 290. 270 is the required number of seats to win a majority in the electoral college.

Since polls closed on Election Day over a week ago, 3 November, Trump and his team have filed around 12 different lawsuits attacking Democratic-leaning areas in closely-contested states attempting to either stop vote counting or discard tranches of ballots cast. Experts are confident there is nothing of substance in these suits that has the power to affect the final result.

Biden Harris transition team hampered by Trump’s own department

Joe Biden and his vice-president elect Kamala Harris launched their transition team immediately, but according to a BBC report have so far not seen co-operation from the relevant White House department.

The General Services Administration is responsible for co-ordinating funding and access to federal agencies for incoming administrations.

The GSA has so far declined to formally recognise Biden as president-elect, which means that his transition team is yet to receive $9.9m in federal funds, neither has it been permitted to send its staff to key departments.

In a statement, the GSA said its administrator "ascertains the apparent successful candidate once a winner is clear based on the process laid out in the Constitution".

Despite the delay, Biden said: "We don't see anything slowing us down, quite frankly."

Majority of Americans think Trump should accept defeat

A Reuters / Ipsos poll released today found that nearly 80% of Americans say Biden won the White House, ignoring Trump's refusal to concede.

79% Americans, including more than half of Republicans, recognise president-elect Joe Biden as the winner of the election. Another 13% said the election has not yet been decided, 3% said Trump won and 5% said they do not know.

The results were somewhat split along party lines: about six in 10 Republicans and almost every Democrat said Biden won.

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