2020-11-20 16:41:18 UTC
*President Donald Trump spent Friday morning blasting tweets that touted his
chances for overturning the election
*'The Election was a HOAX,' he charged
*But his top staff are abandoning his legal bid, including Jared and Ivanka
*Rudy Giuliani leading effort to overturn election but has shown no proof of
*More and more Republicans are speaking up against Trump - including prominent
GOP Senators Mitt Romney and Lamar Alexander
President Donald Trump spent Friday morning blasting tweets that touted his
chances for overturning the election even as his top staff, including Jared
Kushner and Ivanka Trump, abandoned him on his legal attempt to change the
'We have great support on the Election Hoax!,' Trump wrote in one of dozen
tweets, many of which were flagged by Twitter for having incorrect information.
'The Election was a HOAX,' he charged.
Trump is making an increasingly desperate bid to stay in the White House after a
disastrous news conference by his legal team on Thursday, a completed hand
recount in Georgia confirming Joe Biden's win in that state, and losses in three
more court cases.
Biden lawyer Bob Bauer said Friday morning there 'is no chance whatsoever that
Trump can be successful' in his attempt to overturn the Democrat's victory.
Many Trump advisers believe privately that Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal
attorney, and his team's case will go no where, Axios reported, and that
includes Kushner and Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter and son-in-law who
serve in the White House.
The powerhouse couple has been publicly silent on the president's legal bids to
try and overturn results in the battleground states as they continue their work
in the White House.
But other Republicans have not.
'It is difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action by a sitting
American President,' Republican Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah said of Trump's
The president responded harshly to Romney's criticism.
Trump tweeted that Romney is a 'RINO' - a Republican in Name Only - and seemed
to indicate that the 2012 election results - where Barack Obama beat Mitt Romney
with 332 electoral votes to Romney's 206 - were false.
'I'm sure, however, that he feels he got slaughtering by Obama 'fair and
square,'' the president wrote.
He and Romney are longtime foes. Romney voted in favor of one of the impeachment
counts against Trump, who was acquitted by the Senate at large, sparking the
feud between them.
But other Republican senators are starting to speak out.
'After counting every valid vote and allowing courts to resolve disputes, it is
important to respect and promptly accept the result,' said retiring Republican
Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee.
Trump is meeting with Michigan Republicans at the White House on Friday as part
of his frantic, long shot attempt to overturn the results.
The meeting isn't on the president's public schedule, which is not reflective of
all his daily activities, but comes as Trump is said to be obsessed with
figuring out a way to stay in the White House.
Trump had already personally thanked the two Detroit, Michigan Republicans -
Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield - for their
support in the hours before they changed their minds and tried to rescind their
certification of Biden's victory in their county.
'I hope they wear masks and I hope they stay safe,' Democratic Gov. Gretchen
Whitmer of Michigan said of Chatfield and Shirkey's visit. 'All the meetings in
the world, though, can't take away from the fact that Joe Biden won Michigan by
over 150,000 votes.'
Biden won Michigan 51% to Trump's 48% or by 154,000 votes, according to the
current unofficial results. All 83 counties have approved their tallies and the
state is expected to start the certification process on Monday.
The president and his allies appear to be pursing the questionable legal theory
that if the states don't certify the election results, the Republican-controlled
state legislatures can intervene and appoint pro-Trump electors in states Biden
won. Those electors would cast their ballot for Trump when the Electoral College
meets on Dec. 14 - thereby handing him the presidency.
Election experts say there is no scenario in which this could happen and even
some Republican lawmakers in those states have dismissed the idea.
Biden has brushed aside concerns Trump's efforts will undermine his forthcoming
administration but did express concern about what it would do to American
'It's hard to fathom how this man thinks,' Biden said during a press conference
in Wilmington on Thursday. 'I'm confident he knows he hasn't won, and is not
going to be able to win, and we're going to be sworn in on Jan 20.'
Trump's efforts are increasingly being seen as grasping at straws in his
unlikely attempt to overturn Biden's victory.
In Pennsylvania, his legal team suggested in a filing Wednesday that the judge
order the Republican-led state legislature to pick delegates to the Electoral
College in a bid to toss the state's 20 electoral votes to Trump. A judge
canceled an evidentiary hearing in the case.
In Arizona, the Republican Party is pressuring county officials to delay
certifying results. The GOP lost a bid on Thursday to postpone certification in
Maricopa County, the state's biggest county. Biden won Arizona by more than
10,000 votes, and Maricopa County put him over the top - making him the second
Democrat in seven decades to carry the state.
Trump's efforts are looking increasingly for not.
Election experts say he has no chance to flip the results, Georgia confirmed
Biden's win after a hand recount of its ballots and the president lost three
legal bids in battleground states in one day on Thursday.
And, in the latest bit of Trump strategy, in a bizarre press conference at the
Republican National Committee headquarters on Thursday, Trump attorneys Rudy
Giuliani, Jenna Ellis and Sidney Powell presented their argument for widespread
voter fraud but provided no evidence.
The self-styled 'elite strike-force team working on behalf of the president'
outlined a conspiracy which wove together Hugo Chavez; China; Venezuela; Cuba;
the Clinton Foundation; George Soros; testimony found 'on the internet'; ballots
which arrived in trucks; New Jersey voters who crossed the Camden; 'hack'
judges; vote counters in Germany and Spain; Democratic political machines just
like Mayor Daley in the 1960s; the 'fake news media'; and Joe Biden.
'We cannot allow these crooks 'cause that's what they are to steal an
election from the American people,' Giuliani said. 'They elected Donald Trump;
they didn't elect Joe Biden. Joe Biden is in the lead because of the fraudulent
ballots, the illegal ballots that were produced and that were allowed to be used
after the election was over. Give us an opportunity to prove it in court and we
The press conference was seen as something of a farce with what appeared to be
black hair dye rolling down both sides of Giuliani's face as he spoke.