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Trump claims he directed his administration to start Biden's transition process even as he continues to say he won the election

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President Donald Trump.
MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images
  • President Donald Trump took a significant step toward conceding the presidential election on Monday evening after his General Services Administration chief recognized President-elect Joe Biden as the apparent winner.
  • Trump said he recommended that GSA Administrator Emily Murphy and his aides move forward with "initial protocols" for the presidential transition.
  • "Our case STRONGLY continues, we will keep up the good fight, and I believe we will prevail!" Trump tweeted. "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."
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President Donald Trump took a significant step toward conceding the presidential election on Monday evening minutes after the General Services Administration chief a pair of tweets, Trump thanked his GSA administrator, Emily Murphy, for her "steadfast dedication and loyalty to our Country" and said he recommended that Murphy and his aides move forward with "initial protocols" for the presidential transition.

Murphy's delayed decision to ascertain the election results came amid mounting pressure from both Democratic and Republican lawmakers. Biden's team and his allies said the delayed transition hurt the country's national security and pandemic response and wrongly prevented Biden from moving forward with staffing his incoming administration.

Trump said on Monday he and his allies would continue contesting the election results and that he remained convinced he would win reelection. He and his team are pushing unsubstantiated claims of fraud surrounding the election. There is no evidence for this claim.

"Our case STRONGLY continues, we will keep up the good fight, and I believe we will prevail!" Trump tweeted. "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."

The president's statement contradicted what Murphy said to Biden in her Monday letter that officially notified his campaign of her decision. Murphy wrote she made her decision "independently, based on the law and available facts" and that she was "never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official — including those who work at the White House or the G.S.A."

The letter came more than two weeks after major media outlets declared Biden the winner of the presidential election. On Monday afternoon, Michigan became the latest battleground state to certify its election results and declare Biden the winner, an outcome Trump attempted to impede by pressuring GOP election officials in Michigan to delay certification. 

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SEE ALSO: Biden taps John Kerry as Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, marking the first time the NSC will have an official dedicated to climate change

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