Trump finally agrees to Biden transition
US President Donald Trump has finally given a go-ahead to begin the transition process for president-elect Joe Biden after the state of Michigan certified the Democratic leader's victory in the November 3 presidential election, paving the way for a smooth handover of power after weeks of delay.
President Trump, a Republican, however, did not formally concede the election to Biden, saying he would "continue to fight and will prevail."
He has launched a slew of lawsuits in key states, but has not provided any evidence to back his claims of electoral fraud. Many of the lawsuits have been dismissed by courts.
On Monday, the Administrator of the General Services Administration (GSA) Emily Murphy informed Biden in a letter that the Trump administration is ready to begin the formal transition process.
The letter from Murphy, a Trump appointee, is the first step the administration has taken to acknowledge President Trump's defeat, more than two weeks after Biden was declared the winner.
Taking to Twitter after Murphy wrote to Biden, Trump said that he has asked to begin the transition process in the best interest of the country.
"…Fight, and I believe we will prevail! Nevertheless, in the best interest of our Country, I am recommending that Emily and her team do what needs to be done with regard to initial protocols, and have told my team to do the same.
"What does GSA being allowed to preliminarily work with the Dems have to do with continuing to pursue our various cases on what will go down as the most corrupt election in American political history? We are moving full speed ahead. Will never concede to fake ballots & "Dominion," Trump said in a series of tweets.
In her letter, Murphy said she took the decision "independently" and based on the law.
"Please know that I came to my decision independently, based on the law and available facts. I was never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official — including those who work at the White House or GSA — with regard to the substance or timing of my decision. To be clear, I did not receive any direction to delay my determination," Murphy said in her letter as reported by multiple news outlets.
Murphy said she was making USD 6.3 million in funds available to the president-elect for the transition process. Biden is set to be sworn in as the 46th US President on January 20, 2021.