WASHINGTON, D.C. – During the first president debate between incumbent Donald Trump and current President-Elect Joe Biden back on September 29, the former Vice President was asked by moderator Chris Wallace if he would pledge not to declare victory until the election results were independently certified.
With the benefit of hindsight, Biden’s answer can be seen as contradictory at the least, or an outright lie at worst.
“Yes, and here’s the deal,” Biden replied to Wallace. “Count the ballots, as you pointed out. Some of these ballots in some states can’t even be opened until Election Day, and if there are thousands of ballots it’s going to take time to do.”
In contrast to that answer, Biden was quick to claim victory as soon as most major news outlets – including MSNBC, CNN, and FOX – determined him to be the presumptive winner of the 2020 presidential election. While claiming victory under these circumstances is no different than in almost any other election in the past, it still stands in stark contrast to the pledge he took back in September.
Making this a stickier situation is President Trump’s ongoing refusal to concede the results of the election, despite the fact that Biden currently holds an insurmountable lead in electoral votes, with the Associated Press currently giving Biden 290 vs. Trump’s 217.
Trump has been contending that Biden only won due to rampant voter fraud – so far the legal challenges filed by the President’s campaign have mostly been dismissed in court – but it’s possible that if Biden had remembered his pledge to wait until the electoral votes had been independently certified, Trump’s claims of fraud – which he probably still would have made, since this is Donald Trump we’re talking about here – would hold less water than they do now.