President-Elect Joe Biden took a relaxed posture at a Tuesday press conference, dismissing the Trump administration’s fact-free resistance to his election win as “not of much consequence” to his transition plan.
President Donald Trump and his lackeys — including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General Bill Barr and many congressional Republicans — have decided to pretend that the election results are illegitimate. They’ve made vague claims of fraud even while the campaign’s flimsy legal arguments are laughed out of court.
Biden won both the electoral college and popular vote handily, and there is no actual doubt about his victory.
When reporters brought up the Trump administration’s recalcitrance and petulant refusal to release the transition funds Biden is entitled to, the President-Elect chuckled.
“Well, first of all, we are already beginning the transition,” Biden said. “We’re well underway.” The administration’s refusal to accept the reality of his win, Biden added, “does not change the dynamic at all and what we’re able to do.”
Only a handful of elected Republicans have so far been willing to refer to Biden as the president-elect, while some, in particularly bad faith, are pretending that the election’s results are not yet known.
“I think that the whole Republican party has been put in a position — with a few notable exceptions — of being mildly intimidated by the sitting president,” Biden said carefully. He later added with a grin, when asked how he’d work with congressional Republicans if they won’t even accept his presidency, a note of confidence: “they will.”
He emphasized throughout his remarks, though, that Trump’s resistance didn’t ultimately matter. His team could get by without the transition funds, he said, and he’d already started taking calls from foreign leaders.
Having access to classified information would be “nice,” he acknowledged, but he couldn’t act on it yet anyway. On the whole, Biden said that his team is proceeding as if the President had conceded, and that the new administration will start January 20 either way.
“I just think it’s an embarrassment, quite frankly,” Biden said of Trump’s refusal to concede. “How can I say this tactfully — I think it will not help the President’s legacy.”