Trump blocks Biden transition, seeks fund to pay election expenses

United States President Donald Trump has thrown the presidential transition into tumult by blocking government officials from cooperating with President-elect Joe Biden’s team.

Attorney General William Barr has also authorised the Justice Department to probe unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud.

Biden campaign lawyer Bob Bauer said Barr’s memorandum authorizing investigations “will only fuel the ‘specious, speculative, fanciful or far-fetched claims’ he professes to guard against.”

But some Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have rallied behind Trump’s efforts to fight the election results.

According to AP, few in the GOP acknowledged Biden’s victory or condemned Trump’s firing of Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Monday.

The developments cast doubt on whether the nation would witness the same kind of smooth transition of power that has long anchored its democracy.

The Electoral College is slated to formally confirm Biden’s victory on Dec. 14 and the Democrat will be sworn into office in late January.

The Trump administration has not invited the President-elect to the White House as is the tradition.

The meeting between sitting presidents and Vice Presidents and their successors is a time-honoured tradition that represents the peaceful transfer of power.

But CNN’s White House team has reported there are no plans for President Trump to invite Biden to the White House in the coming days.

That means Biden can’t access additional funds for his transition team, and he hasn’t been cleared to receive intelligence briefings, both touchstones of the formal transition process.

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