President-elect Joe Biden, in an exclusive interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on Thursday, addressed the fact that many members of the GOP had not publicly acknowledged his election victory.
The President Donald Trump has refused to let Biden take over the presidency, accusing the Democratic Party of manipulating the election to fall into Biden’s favor. Many observers have described Trump’s statements as unfounded. Some Republicans have joined Trump in refusing to offer Biden their congratulations in a public forum. According to Biden, some GOP senators have secretly reached out their hands.
“There were more than a few Republican senators who called privately to congratulate me,” Biden said. “I understand the situation they are in. Until the election is clearly decided in their minds when the electoral college votes, they will be put in a very difficult position”.
Biden could face a tough battle in getting the Republican-controlled Senate to cooperate with his administration. The majority leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, has not yet publicly acknowledged Biden’s victory. Biden said on Thursday that he expects “at least a significant portion of the leadership” to work with his administration after the electoral college.
“I don’t know if there will be a break on a broad front,” Biden said. “I am not saying that. It is not the same senate. I don’t mean in terms of their philosophy. It’s not the same Senate staff that I knew when I left the Senate.”
Washington Newsday turned to McConnell’s office for comment.
Although McConnell has not yet publicly congratulated Biden, he seemed to refer to Biden’s new administration during a press conference on Tuesday. Asked by reporters about the progress of a new coronavirus stimulus package, McConnell hinted that he expected discussions about “an additional package of some size next year, depending on what the new government wants to pursue.
Trump has made unsubstantiated claims of victory in the presidential election, although Biden predicts that Trump was largely beaten both in the popular vote and in the number of votes received. Despite Trump’s claims that he will never abandon the election, Biden’s transition teams were granted access to federal funds to facilitate a smooth transition of power between administrations.
Trump’s legal team tried to overturn the election results in some states that Biden carried. Many of the lawsuits filed on Trump’s behalf were dismissed by the judges due to lack of evidence. Trump has further alleged that there was evidence of fraud by the Democrats to invalidate the election.
“Ultimately, I am willing to accept any accurate election results,” Trump said, “and I hope Joe Biden is too. But we already have the proof. We already have tens of thousands of ballots, more than we need to topple all these states we are talking about”.