NEW YORK, Nov 27 (APP): US President Donald Trump said Thursday that he will leave the White House when the Electoral College formally certifies President-elect Joe Biden’s election win, but continued to cast doubt on the election result.
Trump, who was responding to reporters’ questions in Washington following a series of video conferences with military service members on Thanksgiving, an American holiday, assuring he would leave the presidency on Jan. 20.
“Certainly I will, and you know that,” he said.
The president, however, went on to say “it’s going to be a very hard thing to concede” and declared that the Electoral College would be making a “mistake” by voting for Biden.
(In the United States, a candidate becomes president by securing the most “electoral” votes rather than by winning a majority of the national popular vote. Electors, allotted to the 50 states and the District of Columbia largely based on their population, are party loyalists who pledge to support the candidate who won the popular vote in their state.)
During the exchange with reporters, Trump continued to allege “massive fraud” related to the election and said his challenges in key states would continue.
“You’re going to see things happening over the next week or two that are going to be shocking to people,” said Trump.
When asked whether he would attend Biden’s inauguration Trump replied, “I know the answer,” but declined to share it with reporters.
Trump’s comments came amid steps taken this week to move along the transition of power including the General Services Administration releasing transition funds to Biden and Trump allowing the president-elect to begin receiving the President’s Daily Brief.
After Thanksgiving Trump said he plans to travel to Georgia to hold a campaign-style rally, which he suggested would be in support of the state’s two Republican incumbent senators who face runoff races.
“Speaking of Georgia, we’re going there. I spoke with the two great senators today. I’ll probably be going on Saturday,” he said.
Meanwhile, desperate efforts by Trump and his aides to overturn results in key states, either by lawsuits or by pressuring state legislators, have failed, and he is running out of options.
Biden and Trump both stayed close to home to celebrate Thanksgiving on Thursday as the coronavirus pandemic raged across the country.
Biden spent the holiday in the small seaside town of Rehoboth, Delaware, where he and his wife Jill have a vacation home. The Bidens are hosting daughter Ashley Biden and her husband Dr. Howard Krein for the holiday meal.
The former vice president, appearing with his wife in a video message posted to his Twitter account on Thanksgiving, said his family typically holds a large gathering on the island of Nantucket off Massachusetts, but would remain in Delaware this year “with just a small group around our dinner table” because of the pandemic.
In the presidential-style address to a nation that has lost more than 260,000 lives to the coronavirus, the Democratic president-elect said Americans were making a “shared sacrifice for the whole country” and a “statement of common purpose” by staying at home with their immediate families.
“I know this isn’t the way many of us hoped we’d spend our holiday. We know that a small act of staying home is a gift to our fellow Americans,” said Biden. “I know better days are coming.”