Republicans Leaders Chime In On President Trump’s Status

( President Donald Trump has refused to concede the presidential election thus far, as his legal cases challenging the legitimacy of votes in a few states are underway.

As that’s going on, Democrat Joe Biden has been named the president-elect by many news organizations. He and running mate Kamala Harris even held a celebratory get-together in Delaware Saturday night, giving speeches about how they are going to turn the country around.

As the official election results work themselves out — through validation and through court proceedings — other Republicans in Washington are being put in quite the bind.

Do they remain quiet? Do they support Trump, even as it looks like he may soon be leaving the White House? Do they congratulate Biden and potentially anger any of their pro-Trump constituents?

Some of the top Republicans in Congress are taking remarkably different courses.

Senator Lindsey Graham, the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee who won re-election on Election Day, backed the president, saying:

“Don’t accept the media’s declaration. Don’t concede, Mr. President. Fight hard.”

Trump also has an ally in House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who said:

“What we need in the presidential race is to make sure every legal vote is counted, every recount is completed, and every legal challenge should be heard. Then, and only then, America will decide who won the race.”

And Krisi Noem, the Republican governor of South Dakota, threw her support behind Trump, too, saying:

“We should give President Trump his day in court. If Joe Biden really wants to unify this country, he would wait and make sure that we can prove we had a fair election.”

Some other Republicans have taken a more neutral stance. Missouri Senator Roy Blunt said:

“It’s time for the president’s lawyers to present the facts and then it’s time for those facts to speak for themselves,” adding it “seems unlikely that any changes could be big enough to make a difference.”

Mitt Romney, the Republican Senator from Arizona who has been a critic of Trump’s in the past, said:

“The reality is, the fact that the statisticians have come to a conclusion at this stage, I think we get behind the new president.”

Former President George W. Bush said he spoke with Biden and Harris to send his congratulations their way.

So far, though, one of the most prominent, and the most powerful, Republican in Congress has remained rather quiet. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who also won re-election in his home state of Kentucky, tweeted Friday that “every legal vote should be counted.”

He declined to go into more detail or provide a further statement on the matter during a press conference on Friday, though. Over the weekend, McConnell’s office again declined to comment further.

McConnell’s stance will be perhaps the most important one for Republicans. Because he’s likely to remain the leader of the party in the Senate, though, he’s most likely going to take a wait-and-see approach before commenting at all. Then, he’s likely to continue to support the president, even if he does indeed leave office come January.