President Trump, Joe Biden, President Elect Biden discussed on Here & Now
W You are young. I'm Peter rode out. This is here and now President Elect Joe Biden is addressing the nation for the second straight day today. This time he's talking about the future of the Affordable Care Act, which is before the Supreme Court today. Meanwhile, the Trump Administration is still pressing its case without evidence that the election isn't over. Attorney General Bill Bar sent a memo last night authorizing the Justice Department to look into Trump's baseless voter fraud claims. In the DOJ official in charge of the voting crimes division, resigned in protest. NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith joins us Now, Tam tell us more about this memo. Bard didn't say there was voter fraud just that he authorized investigators to look into substantial allegations. What do you make of this? Yes, so there were a lot of ifs and other condition ALS in in the statement that he put out, he says Investigations may be conducted if there are clear and apparently credible allegations of a race. Hilarity is that, if true could potentially impacts the outcome of the federal election in an individual state, which is to say that he isn't saying that those conditions exist on DH. He's specifically saying that frivolous or minor allegations should not be investigated before certification of the results. Well, it was enough to upset some top ranking officials at the Department of Justice. Richard Pilger, the DOJ official who oversees election crimes, resigned, he sent an email Tio colleagues saying that bars memo Fabricates a 40 year old policy. And he says, having familiarized himself with the new policy and its ramifications. He felt that he had to step aside. Well, all right. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell yesterday joined other Republicans who said that the president has every right to explore and exhaust his legal challenges to get his day in court. Most of the lawsuits though, Tam contesting the election counts and and other issues have already failed in the courts. And just give us a timeline here. What are we looking at? How long does this process take? Yeah, most of the lawsuits and they keep bringing new ones. But most of them haven't even survived their first contact with the U. S justice system. How long could this go on? It's not clear how long it will truly be sustainable for the president to hold out as more votes are counted Joe Biden's lead in several of these key states. Is getting larger in Arizona. It's getting smaller. But in Pennsylvania, it's getting much larger. And you know what's happening here is that Republicans in Congress seemed to be indulging President Trump's search for fraud. Allowing him to try to exhaust all of his legal options. I mean, potentially, it could go until the election is certified. But that seems somewhat unlikely. And in addition to Republicans in Congress, though, who mostly haven't congratulated President elect Biden, you now have world leaders who are allies of President Trump you have Boris Johnson tweeting out. That he just spoke to and congratulated Joe Biden on his election on He looks forward to working with him, so you're starting to see the president's allies around the world. Come and call Joe Biden the moment I'm shifting away from President Trump. Now, what about this Republican infighting in Georgia Senators Kelly Lawful David Perdue. Calling on Georgia's Republican secretary of state to step down there, citing election irregularities again without any evidence, and the secretary of state, also a Republican, Brad Raffles, Burger forcefully rejected these claims. He's saying they're just upset that they're stuck in a run off. With Democrats, but this is a remarkable example of where the country is right now with this election, But you are also pointing out something very important there, which is that both of Thesent Attar's have run off in early January. They are campaigning for office showing that they're still very supportive of President Trump and his position so much so that they would call for a Republican secretary of state in their state to resign because he conducted an election that has apparently no major problems. That that is just an indication that President Trump, although he did not win, maintains an outsized role in his party. I mean the other evidences that most Republican senators who served with Joe Biden when he was in the Senate haven't congratulated him at least publicly. All of this really is holding up the presidential transition. Biden isn't getting the usual daily presidential briefings that President elect normally would. His staff isn't getting access to classified materials. How much could that hamper Joe Biden in the early days of his new administration? His team is raising alarms. Transition officials say that they're looking at multiple avenues to convince the General Services Administration Agency tow ascertain that he is, in fact, president elect so that he can gain access to the resource is on intelligence and all of the other things that come with the transition. Interestingly, Republican Senator Marco Rubio told reporters yesterday. He thinks Nick transition is important and letting Biden gets started wouldn't hurt the president's legal chances, he says. That's NPR. White House correspondent Tamara Keith. Thank you very much for the update Your welcome. Well, yesterday we spoke with the Republican lawmaker today. Democratic Congressman Adam Smith is here. He's chair of the House Armed Services Committee representing Washington's ninth District. Carson. Welcome. Thank you for having me appreciate Champ and because of your position on the Armed Services Committee, I'd like to start with yesterday's news that President Trump terminated is the word he used in a tweet. His defense secretary, Mark Esper. Esper disagreed with the president back in June. As for did not want active duty military sent to control protests. We know the president was furious about that. This may be payback. But the president elevated Christopher Miller, who's director of the National Counter Terrorism Center to acting secretary. We're reading that's raising alarms your thoughts about that elevation. Well, three quick things about I mean, First of all, it's a dangerous thing to do during the transition to replace Secretary of Defense Transition is There's a moment of potential instability second and certainly seeing that the president did this out of spite. I mean, if he really wanted a secretary defense that he felt was more in keeping with what he wanted to do what he could have done it before this Hey, wait until after the election because he didn't want the political damage, But he did want to lash out. And then Lastly, the question is, Does this mean that there's going to be more disruptions during at the transition period? What What else could trump due to place our government in a vulnerable position?.