Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, noted that President Donald Trump is still the president and that Joe Biden is not officially the “president-elect”—as some news outlets have described him—until Trump concedes or states have certified the result and court cases have been dismissed.
Graham told the Wall Street Journal’s Lindsay Wise on Tuesday that people should collectively refer to a presidential candidate as “president-elect” only if “Trump concedes or the court cases have been dismissed and the states certified.”
The South Carolina Republican said that if Trump does not concede and the states certify the election, “[it’s] enough” to call Biden the president-elect.
“If there is no concession there is a contest,” Graham added. “If there is a contest in court and the party loses, that’s the end of the contest. There is no way to overturn a election other than a court of law.”
Another Republican, Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), said it’s premature to describe Biden, a former vice president, as president-elect.
“We don’t know yet who’s going to end up being the eventual winner on that,” he told Just The News. “Joe Biden, for instance, has been receiving intel briefings for month at this point but those stopped as soon as the election occurred until we know who the actual winner is. I think we should continue doing the briefings the same as it was during the campaign time period because we’re still in the campaign,” said Lankford.
The Epoch Times has not called the race for either Trump or Biden, pending legal challenges and the certification of the results.
On Tuesday, Graham also told reporters that he has spoken with Nevada and Arizona election officials.
“I talked to Arizona. I talked to Nevada. Voting by mail is going to be more, not less. How you validate signatures is really important,” Graham told reporters. He added that he’s reaching out to those states’ officials “as a United States senator who is worried about the integrity of the election process nationally, when it comes to vote by mail.”
Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, wrote on Twitter that Graham had not spoken with her. Graham later said that he spoke with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, a Republican, and said he could not recall who he spoke with in Nevada.
“What I’m trying to find out is how do you verify mail-in ballots,” Graham explained, according to The Hill. “The question I have is who verifies the signature and if it’s a single individual, I don’t like that. I think it should be bipartisan.”