Donald Trump for the first time has signaled he will leave WH if the President-elect Joe Biden is formally confirmed as the United States next President by the electoral college members. The President had so far refused to concede in the presidential elections alleging the systemic rigging and on Thursday said it would be hard to concede. Harping on the same string, Trump once again repeated unfounded claims of electoral fraud. Trump lags Biden 232 to 306 in the electoral college system and is spending his last days in the office.
The Democrat has secured a tally far more than required (270) to win White House and also leads the popular voted by over 6mn. Electors will meet next month to formalize the vote, with the President-elect set to take oath in as president on Jan 20, 2021. The President and his supporters have launched a flurry of lawsuits to challenge the results of the elections but failed disappointment in most of their bids. Earlier this week, Trump finally gave the green signal for the formal transition after showing indecisiveness for a couple of weeks. It looks as he and his camp have begun to realize the inevitable defeat nearing them following several weeks of uncertainty.
The decision will make Biden formally eligible to get classified intel briefs, access key state officials and receive millions of dollars in funds as he gears up for presidency.
What did Trump Say?
When asked on Thursday whether he is ready to leave the WH if he lost the electoral college vote, he said: “Certainly I will, certainly I will and you know that.”
“It’s going to be a very hard thing to concede because we know there was massive fraud,” Trump said without evidence.
“As to whether or not we can get this apparatus moving quickly — because time isn’t on our side, everything else is on our side, facts are on our side, this was a massive fraud.”
However, he didn’t comment on whether he would attend Biden’s swearing in ceremony. The normal well-oiled transition was so far denied by Trump as he refused to concede. Under United States electoral system, the voters do no directly elect the president and instead have to vote for 538 electoral college members – based on the population size – who in turn represent their vote to elect the President.
The electors normally and almost always vote for the candidate that wins the popular vote, although it is possible for some to take an exception and vote contrary to the wishes of the voters.
The latest from Biden
The Democrat celebrated a low-profile Thanksgiving on Thursday as COVID-19 cases surge in the United States.
“This year, our turkey will be smaller and the clatter of cooking a little quieter,” Biden and his wife Jill said in an op-ed published by CNN. “Like millions of Americans, we are temporarily letting go of the traditions we can’t do safely.”
“It is not a small sacrifice. These moments with our loved ones – time that’s lost – can’t be returned. Yet, we know it’s the price of protecting each other and one we don’t pay alone.”
The President-elect, earlier this week called on Americans to hold smaller Thanksgiving celebrations, saying that “I know that we can and will beat this virus”.
Biden has already announced his picks for the new administration to replace Trump’s in January and termed cooperation from the WH for the transfer of power “sincere”.