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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) celebrated Republicans' congressional victories and defended President Trump's refusal to concede to Joe Biden, saying on the Senate floor Monday that Trump has "every right to look into allegations and request recounts."

The state of play: As of Monday afternoon, only four Republican senators — Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Mitt Romney (Utah), Susan Collins (Maine) and Ben Sasse (Neb.) — had congratulated Biden on his projected victory.

  • Top Trump allies in the House and Senate have continued to spread unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud and attack the media for calling the race before every "legal" vote is counted.
  • The refusal by top Republicans to accept Biden's victory and allow all legal options to be exhausted could mean weeks of drama — and, more importantly, distractions from the vital work of transitioning government for a change of power.

What they're saying: "In the United States of America, all legal ballots must be counted. Any illegal ballots must not be counted. The process must be transparent or observable by all sides, and the courts are here to work through concerns," McConnell said.

  • "Our institutions are actually built for this. We have the system in place to consider concerns, and President Trump is 100% within his rights to look into allegations of irregularities and weigh his legal options," he continued.
  • "And notably, the Constitution gives no role in this process to wealthy media corporations. The projections and commentary of the press do not get veto power over the legal rights of any citizen, including the president."

Go deeper: Trump allies brace for 30-day legal war

Go deeper

Nov 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

GOP Sen. Kevin Cramer: Transition should start "tomorrow morning"

Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) said on "Meet the Press" on Sunday that it is past time to "cooperate with the transition" to President-elect Joe Biden, adding that he believes President Trump still has the right to continue fighting in court over election results.

Driving the news: Trump has refused to allow the transition process to begin as he has sought to discredit the election results in swing states across the country — baselessly alleging mass voter fraud.

Chris Christie: Trump's legal challenges against election results have been "a national embarrassment"

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Sunday denounced a lack of evidence in President Trump's legal challenges against election results as "a national embarrassment," emphasizing that Trump has had his chance to prove allegations of widespread voter fraud in court.

The big picture: Despite the president's legal challenges in various states gaining little to no ground, only a handful of congressional Republicans have acknowledged Biden as president-elect.

Updated Nov 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

The top Republicans who have acknowledged Biden as president-elect

Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Some elected Republicans are breaking ranks with President Trump to acknowledge that President-elect Biden won the 2020 presidential election.

Why it matters: The relative sparsity of acknowledgements highlights Trump's lasting power in the GOP, as his campaign moves to file multiple lawsuits alleging voter fraud in key swing states — despite the fact that there have been no credible allegations of any widespread fraud anywhere in the U.S.