Trump says he will respect Electoral College vote, but warns it will be a ‘very hard thing to concede’

Donald Trump has moved a step closer to conceding the US election.

Taking questions for the first time since the election, the president was asked whether he will leave the White House if the Electoral College votes for president-elect Joe Biden.

He replied: “Certainly I will, certainly I will, and you know that.”

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How does The Electoral College work?

But he said it is “going to be a very hard thing to concede”, adding: “I think that there will be a lot of things happening between now and the 20th of January. A lot of things.”

Mr Biden, who is due to be inaugurated on that date, won 306 Electoral College votes to Mr Trump’s 232 following the 3 November election.

Despite the popular vote being settled, the US system means the formal process of the college choosing a president will not happen until 14 December.

Mr Trump made the comments at the White House after speaking to US troops during a traditional Thanksgiving Day address.

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He continues to claim, without evidence, that the election was skewed by “massive fraud”, and said the USA was “like a third world country”.

But he has been inching towards a concession.

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Trump’s team to cooperate with transition

Earlier this week, he said he had given Emily Murphy, head of the General Services Administration (GSA), the go-ahead to proceed with a transition for Mr Biden’s administration.

The GSA is responsible for many of the basic services that allow the US government to function, from buildings and transport management to IT, financial services, supply chains and human resources.

Last week, the president said Mr Biden had “won” the US election – but then added that he was not conceding.

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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