United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday said that there will smooth transition to a second Trump administration, as the president again claimed victory in the election.
“There will be a smooth transition to a second Trump administration,” he said when asked if the United States State Department was in contact with the team of President-elect Joe Biden for the transition of power. “The world is watching what’s taking place. We are going to count all the votes. When the process is complete, there will be electors selected. There is a process, the Constitution lays it down pretty clearly,” Pompeo added.
Pompeo added that the world should have every confidence that the transition was being made to ensure that the existing State Department, which is “functional and successful today”, will also be operating the same with the president who is in office on January 20, the date of the presidential inauguration. His remarks hint at the Trump administration’s strong reluctance to handover to Biden.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump refused to concede in the US elections. “We will win,” he tweeted on Tuesday. Trump also continued to allege election fraud, tweeting on Wednesday: “People will not accept this Rigged Election!”
He has, however, not provided any evidence to support his allegations. “They shut out our Poll Watchers and Observers,” he said in another tweet, tagging a news report, which alleged election fraud in Philadelphia. “Those hundreds of thousands of votes should not be allowed. Corrupt politics.” His tweet was immediately labelled as disputed.
Twitter has repeatedly flagged Trump’s tweets alleging election fraud. During the vote count beginning November 3, Trump has tweeted or retweeted about fraud 37 times, according to the Hindustan Times. The social media platform has flagged 13 of these tweets. The microblogging website said that 12 of the 13 suggested that “some or all of the content” is “disputed” and possibly “misleading.”
Earlier on Tuesday, US Attorney General William Barr upheld Trump’s unfounded claims on election irregularities, and authorised American attorneys to investigate “substantial” allegations of voter fraud before the results of the presidential race are certified.
Trump has claimed that there has been a multi-state conspiracy by Democrats to rig the vote tally in Biden’s favour. Although the counting of votes in the US is still underway, Biden holds a sizeable lead in multiple battleground states and there has been no indication of improperly counted votes so far that would shift the outcome.
The Trump campaign has filed several lawsuits, claiming the election results were flawed. These were dismissed in Michigan and Georgia.
Failure to recognise win doesn’t change what we’re able to do: Biden
Meanwhile, Biden on Tuesday said he was beginning the process of transition despite Trump’s claims, according to The Guardian.
“We are already beginning the transition, we are well underway, and the ability for the administration in any way...the failure to recognise our win does not change the dynamic of what we are able to do,” Biden said at a press conference in Wilmington, Delaware.
Biden also expressed confidence that Trump’s unwillingness to acknowledge defeat did not have much of a consequence in his planning, and that he will take action from now till the inauguration, according to ANI.
When asked about Trump’s refusal to accept defeat: “I just think it’s an embarrassment, quite frankly.” Biden further said he was looking forward to speaking to Trump when asked if he would meet the outgoing president.
Biden, who was the vice president in Barack Obama’s administration, defeated Trump in a close contest, crossing the 270-mark needed to win the polls. Biden led the race since November 3 with the gap between him and Trump slowly widening over the last five days. On November 7, the crucial state of Pennsylvania was called for him, putting him on track to win the elections with a total of 273 electoral votes.