President Donald Trump Tuesday night refused to pledge that he won’t claim victory prematurely until the election is independently certified and all ballots counted, while Joe Biden pledged that he would wait.
The candidates were responding to a question at the end of Tuesday’s presidential debate posed by moderator Chris Wallace, who noted that it could take days or weeks to count all ballots because of the high volume of mail-in ballots expected during the pandemic. Mail-ballots are likely to skew for Biden because Democratic voters have requested far more mail-ballots than Republican voters.
“I’m urging my supporters to go into the polls and watch very carefully,” Trump said, not answering the question. “I hope it’s a fair election. If it’s a fair election, I’m 100% on board.”
Trump, who has claimed without evidence for months that mail-in voting will lead to voter fraud, also said he would challenge an election dispute about mail ballots to the Supreme Court.
“I think I’m counting on them to look at the ballots – definitely,” Trump said.
Biden urged his supporters to ignore Trump’s claims about mail-voting, telling them the president is seeking to get them to stay home on Election Day.
“Show up and vote,” Biden said. “You will determine the outcome of this election. Vote. Vote. Vote.”
Biden added: “He cannot stop you from being able to determine the outcome of this election.”
As Trump called mail-voting a “disaster,” Biden defended the voting method, rejecting the president’s many claims.
“He sits behind the Resolute desk and sends his ballot to Florida,” Biden said, referring to Trump’s own history of voting by mail.
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