President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday called President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede his election loss an “embarrassment” but dismissed the standoff as unimportant.
“I just think it’s an embarrassment, quite frankly,” Biden said when asked what he thinks about Trump’s refusal to acknowledge defeat in the November 3 election.
“How can I say this tactfully? I think it will not help the president’s legacy,” Biden told reporters in his home town of Wilmington, Delaware.
A week after the US election, Trump remained shut up in the White House, pushing an alternate reality that he is about to win and filing lawsuits alleging voter fraud that so far has been backed up by only the flimsiest evidence.
Biden, meanwhile, mostly ignored Trump.
“The fact that they’re not willing to acknowledge we won at this point is not of much consequence in our planning,” Biden said.
The Democrat signaled that despite attempts by Trump to stymie his transition to power he was increasingly a president in waiting.
In his latest exchanges with international leaders, he talked Tuesday with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Ireland’s prime minister, Micheal Martin.
Asked what his message to them was, he said: “I’m letting them know that America is back. We’re going to be back in the game. It’s not America alone.”
– Intransigence –
Trump’s attempt to hold on to power has become all-consuming for the man who often makes a point of publicly mocking rivals as “losers.”
“WE WILL WIN!” the Republican president tweeted early Tuesday, referring to his so far unsuccessful lawsuits. “WATCH FOR MASSIVE BALLOT COUNTING ABUSE.”
Emphasizing the atmosphere of intransigence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a testy news conference that he was preparing for “a smooth transition to a second Trump administration.”
Since Election Day, Trump has made few public appearances and seems to have all but shelved normal presidential duties.
His only known activities outside the White House have been to play golf twice over the weekend after the results came in.
Normally routine secret presidential intelligence briefings have been off the daily schedule. He has made no mention of the dramatic rebound in the Covid-19 pandemic across the country.
And his once near-daily press conferences, interviews with Fox News or impromptu question-and-answer sessions with White House journalists have dried up.
In place of that, Trump has spent much of his time tweeting, mostly about what he claims is the stolen election.
Trump’s only significant presidential action has been the abrupt firing of defence secretary Mark Esper on Monday, which he announced on Twitter.