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President Trump's continued unfounded claim that Democrats stole the 2020 election from him through widespread voter fraud and mail-in ballots is "rhetoric that gets picked up by authoritarians around the world," Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) told NBC's Meet the Press on Sunday.

The big picture: Trump's refusal to concede the election has earned rebuke from a handful of prominent Republicans, including Romney, as world leaders congratulate President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.

What he's saying: When asked by Chuck Todd if Trump's strategy to fight the results of the election — which includes litigation across several states that has had little effect — "undermines the democracy," Romney said.

  • "Well, I'm more concerned about the language that's used. I think it's fine to pursue every legal avenue that one has. But I think one has to be careful in the choice of words."
  • "I think when you say that the election was corrupt or stolen or rigged, that that's unfortunately rhetoric that gets picked up by authoritarians around the world. And I think it also discourages confidence in our democratic process here at home."

Go deeper

Young people want checks on Big Tech's power

Data: Generation Lab; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

The next generation of college-educated Americans thinks social media companies have too much power and influence on politics and need more government regulation, according to a new survey by Generation Lab for Axios.

Why it matters: The findings follow an election dominated by rampant disinformation about voting fraud on social media; companies' fraught efforts to stifle purveyors of disinformation including former President Trump; and a deadly Jan. 6 insurrection over the election organized largely online.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Americans increasingly see China as an enemy

One in three Americans, and a majority of Republicans, now view China as an enemy of the United States, according to a new survey from Pew Research Center.

By the numbers: Just 9% of Americans consider China a "partner," while 55% see Beijing as a "competitor" and 34% as an "enemy."

Scoop: Leaked HHS docs spotlight Biden's child migrant dilemma

A group of undocumented immigrants walk toward a Customs and Border Patrol station after being apprehended. Photo: Sergio Flores/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Fresh internal documents from the Department of Health and Human Services show how quickly the number of child migrants crossing the border is overwhelming the administration's stretched resources.

Driving the news: In the week ending March 1, the Border Patrol referred to HHS custody an average of 321 children per day, according to documents obtained by Axios. That's up from a weekly average of 203 in late January and early February — and just 47 per day during the first week of January.