WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell recognized Democrat Joe Biden as the president-elect for the first time Tuesday, the day after the Electoral College formalized Biden’s win in the Nov. 3 election.
“The Electoral College has spoken,” McConnell, R-Ky., said on the Senate floor. “Today, I want to congratulate President-elect Joe Biden.”
He’s not alone. Other Republicans ready to move on are publicly accepting President Donald Trump’s defeat, including Sens. Joni Ernst of Iowa and Todd Young of Indiana.
“It’s very important that each of us work with President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect (Kamala) Harris,” Young said.
The acknowledgement comes more than a month after Biden claimed victory and after weeks of failed legal challenges from the Trump campaign and allies.
Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said he’s glad some of his Republican colleagues are accepting reality, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said the entire party must follow suit “for the sake of our democracy, for the sake of the peaceful transition of power.”
“Enough is enough,” Schumer said.
Trump, however, isn’t backing down.
“Yesterday’s Electoral College vote was one step in the constitutional process,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a Tuesday press conference. “The president is still involved in ongoing litigation.”
Congress will certify the Electoral College’s vote Jan. 6.
In the meantime, Biden’s presidential inauguration committee says it’s moving forward with plans to swear in him and Harris on Jan. 20.