After Trump assembly, lawmakers say they’re not conscious of particulars that will ‘change the result of the election in Michigan’

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By Carl Hulse, New York Times

Sen. Bernie Sanders, the progressive Vermont independent, has emerged as a contender for labor secretary in President-elect Joe Biden’s administration, a prospect that would suit his ambitions of being a warrior for working Americans — and one that makes some Senate Republicans very uneasy.

The growing senatorial resistance to Sanders even before any formal action by the new administration reflects the formidable task Biden faces. Should Republicans hold on to their Senate majority next year, Biden would be the first president since George Bush in 1989 to enter office without his party controlling the chamber and managing the confirmation process. And that process has grown much more toxic, to the point where senators routinely engage in near-blanket opposition to the picks of a president from the opposite party — if they allow consideration at all.

Michigan election staff recommends state to OK Biden victory — 9:08 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Michigan’s elections agency on Friday recommended that the Nov. 3 results be certified next week by state canvassers, a decision that would bless Joe Biden’s victory over President Donald Trump but likely not cool partisan strife over the vote.

The recommendation was posted online with the formal Monday meeting notice of the Board of State Canvassers. The guidance came at the end of a stormy week in which Trump summoned Republican state lawmakers to the White House on Friday in an extraordinary effort to try to set aside Biden’s 154,000-vote victory.

Mass. reports record voter turnout, embrace of mail-in voting — 8:19 p.m.

By Jeremy C. Fox, Globe Correspondent

Massachusetts saw record turnout in the Nov. 3 general election, with 76 percent of registered voters participating and nearly two-thirds of their ballots sent by mail or cast early, as the coronavirus pandemic forced many to reconsider voting habits.

More than 3.6 million ballots were cast in Massachusetts, where there are more than 4.8 million registered voters, Debra O’Malley, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State William F. Galvin, said in an e-mail.

Biden wants Congress to pass virus aid in lame-duck session — 8:11 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is pushing Congress to approve billions of dollars in emergency COVID-19 assistance before he takes office, saying in a meeting Friday with the top Democrats in the House and Senate that such a package should be approved during the lame-duck session.

Biden held his first in-person meeting since winning the presidential election with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, hosting them at his makeshift transition headquarters in a downtown Wilmington, Delaware, theater.

Kayleigh McEnany calls CNN’s Kaitlan Collins ‘an activist’ after White House briefing — 6:48 p.m.

By Amanda Kaufman, Globe Staff

After White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany held her first briefing in weeks, she refused to take a question from CNN’s Kaitlan Collins and called her an “activist,” to which Collins responded by telling McEnany she had failed to do her “taxpayer-funded job.”

“Thank you everyone for the very good and substantive questions today,” McEnany said, before she appeared to look at Collins and say: “I don’t call on activists.”

After Trump meeting, Michigan GOP lawmakers say they’re not aware of any info that would change Biden’s victory in state — 6:33 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President Donald Trump sought to leverage the power of the Oval Office on Friday in an extraordinary attempt to block President-elect Joe Biden’s victory as criticism mounted that his futile efforts to subvert the results of the 2020 election could do long-lasting damage to democratic traditions.

Trump summoned a delegation of Republican lawmakers from Michigan, including the state’s Senate majority leader and House speaker, in an apparent extension of his efforts to persuade judges and election officials in the state to set aside Biden’s 154,000-vote margin of victory and grant him the state’s electors.

In a joint statement after the White House meeting, the Michigan lawmakers said allegations of fraud should be investigated, but indicated they were unmoved by Trump’s claims thus far. “We have not yet been made aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election in Michigan and as legislative leaders, we will follow the law and follow the normal process regarding Michigan’s electors, just as we have said throughout this election.”

Biden could announce Cabinet picks as soon as next week — 5:21 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is moving quickly to fill out his administration and could name top leaders for his Cabinet as early as next week.

Biden told reporters on Thursday that he’s already decided on who will lead the Treasury Department. That pick, along with his nominee for secretary of state, may be announced before Thanksgiving, according to people close to the transition who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

The Cabinet announcements could be released in tranches, with groups of nominees focused on a specific top area, like the economy, national security or public health, being announced at once.

Trump allies are among frequent purveyors of election misinformation — 4:40 p.m.

By Linda Qiu, New York Times

President Trump and his allies have continuously amplified false and unsubstantiated claims about voting as they wage a multifront assault on the legitimacy of the 2020 election.

A preelection analysis from the Election Integrity Partnership found that posts from 20 Twitter accounts, including 13 verified and Trump himself, accounted for one-fifth of all shares of voting-related misinformation in its database.

Georgia Secretary of State certifies Biden’s win after audit — 4:13 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Georgia’s top elections official on Friday certified election results showing Joe Biden won the presidential election after a hand tally stemming from a mandatory audit affirmed the Democrat’s lead over Republican President Donald Trump.

The final results certified by Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger had Biden with 2.47 million votes, President Donald Trump with 2.46 million votes and Libertarian Jo Jorgensen with 62,138. That leaves Biden leading by a margin of 12,670 votes or 0.25%.

Trump has summoned Michigan lawmakers to the White House. But what exactly is he trying to do? — 4:06 p.m.

By Christina Prignano, Globe Staff

President Trump has summoned Michigan’s top Republican state lawmakers to the White House Friday, reportedly as part of his ongoing bid to overturn the election results in the state, which President-elect Biden won by more than 155,000 votes.

But what precisely is he trying to do? And does his gambit have any chance of succeeding?

Biden adds Obama administration veterans to top staff — 3:31 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is adding four Obama-Biden administration veterans to his top ranks as he continues to build out his White House team.

Cathy Russell, who was Jill Biden’s chief of staff during the Obama administration, will serve as director of the White House Office of Presidential Personnel, evaluating applicants for administration roles. Louisa Terrell, who served as a legislative adviser to the president in the Obama administration and worked as deputy chief of staff for Biden in the Senate, will be director of the White House Office of Legislative Affairs. Terrell has already been engaged in Capitol Hill outreach as part of Biden’s transition team.

Trump makes late-term bid to lower prescription drug costs — 3:07 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Trying to close out major unfinished business, the Trump administration issued regulations Friday that could lower the prices Americans pay for many prescription drugs.

But in a time of political uncertainty, it’s hard to say whether the rules will withstand expected legal challenges from the pharmaceutical industry or whether the incoming Biden administration will accept, amend or try to roll them back entirely.

Pence comes to Georgia ahead of Senate runoffs — 2:35 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Vice President Mike Pence is campaigning Friday in Georgia as the state’s two Republican senators try to beat back Democratic challenges in runoff races on Jan. 5 that will determine who controls the Senate at the outset of President-elect Joe Biden’s administration.

The trip highlights a critical juncture both for the Republican Party and for Pence, as the vice president tries to balance his own political future with his loyalties to a president who has yet to concede defeat.

Iran’s allies on high alert in Trump’s final weeks in office — 1:31 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Iran has instructed allies across the Middle East to be on high alert and avoid provoking tensions with the U.S. that could give an outgoing Trump administration cause to launch attacks in the U.S. president’s final weeks in office, Iraqi officials have said.

The request — delivered by a senior Iranian general to allies in Baghdad this week — reflects the growing regional anxiety over President Donald Trump’s unpredictable behavior and the uncertainty in the chaotic transition period until President-elect Joe Biden takes over in two months.

Trump admin should aid in Biden transition, Senator Alexander says — 12:21 p.m.

By Jonathan Mattise, Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander said Friday that President Donald Trump’s administration should aid President-elect Joe Biden in his transition, saying the Democrat has a “very good chance” of becoming the next president.

“If there is any chance whatsoever that Joe Biden will be the next president, and it looks like he has a very good chance, the Trump Administration should provide the Biden team with all transition materials, resources, and meetings necessary to ensure a smooth transition so that both sides are ready on day one,” the Republican from Tennessee said in a statement. “That especially should be true, for example, on vaccine distribution.”

Alexander, who is retiring, said recounts and resolving disputes after a close election are not unprecedented and should reassure Americans that the results are valid.

He also drew upon the example of Al Gore, who 37 days after the 2000 election, “made the best speech of his life accepting the result” that George W. Bush would become president.

Mnuchin denies he’s trying to hinder incoming administration — 11:02 a.m.

By Martin Crutsinger and Christopher Rugaber, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin denied that he is attempting to limit the choices President-elect Joe Biden will have to promote an economic recovery by ending several emergency loan programs being run by the Federal Reserve.

Mnuchin said his decision was based on the fact that the programs were not being heavily utilized. He said Friday that Congress could make better use of the money by re-allocating it in another direction to support grants to small businesses and extended unemployment assistance.

“We’re not trying to hinder anything,” Mnuchin said in a CNBC interview. “We don’t need this money to buy corporate bonds. We need this money to go help small businesses that are still closed.”

However, critics saw politics at play in Mnuchin’s decision, saying the action would deprive the incoming administration of critical support the Fed might need to prop up the economy as coronavirus infections spike nationwide.

Biden to meet with Pelosi, Schumer as challenges loom — 10:10 a.m.

By Steve Peoples, Associated Press

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — President-elect Joe Biden is set to hold his first in-person meeting since winning the election with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer on Friday.

The incoming Democratic president will host the top Democrats in the House and Senate at his makeshift transition headquarters in a downtown Wilmington, Delaware, theater. Their discussion is expected to be private, although the immediate challenges they face are no secret.

The new governing team is already facing intense pressure to approve another COVID-19 relief bill, come up with a clear plan to distribute millions of doses of a prospective vaccine, and Biden is just days away from unveiling the first of his Cabinet picks, which are subject to Senate confirmation.

Georgia Secretary of State to certify election for Biden — 8:37 a.m.

By Kate Brumback, Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s top elections official said he will certify that Joe Biden won the state’s presidential election after a hand tally stemming from a mandatory audit affirmed the Democrat’s lead over Republican President Donald Trump.

“Working as an engineer throughout my life, I live by the motto that numbers don’t lie,” Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said during a news conference at the state Capitol. “As secretary of state, I believe that the numbers that we have presented today are correct. The numbers reflect the verdict of the people, not a decision by the secretary of state’s office or of courts or of either campaign.”

In the end, the hand count affirmed Biden won by more than 12,000 votes out of about 5 million cast, according to data released by Raffensperger’s office Thursday.

State law says Raffensperger must certify the election results by 5 p.m. Friday. Then, Gov. Brian Kemp has until 5 p.m. Saturday to certify the state’s slate of 16 presidential electors.

Once Raffensperger certifies the results, Trump’s campaign will have two business days to request a recount since the margin is within 0.5%. That recount would be done using scanning machines that read and tally the votes and would be paid for by the counties, the secretary of state’s office has said.

Sanders, Warren under scrutiny as Biden weighs Cabinet picks — 5:42 a.m.

By Associated Press

Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, leaders of the Democratic Party’s left wing, are at risk of being excluded from the senior ranks of President-elect Joe Biden’s administration as the incoming president balances the demands of his party’s progressive base against the political realities of a narrowly divided Senate.

The liberal New England senators remain interested in serving in Biden’s Cabinet, but even some of their allies recognize they face major political hurdles getting there. Sensing disappointment, progressive leaders have reluctantly begun to express support for less-controversial alternatives.

Tucker Carlson bashes Trump attorney Sidney Powell for lack of evidence in fraud claims: ‘She never sent us any’ — 5:37 a.m.

By Tim Elfrink, Washington Post

As Fox News host Tucker Carlson noted on Thursday night, he’s more than willing to give airtime to outlandish claims. “We literally do UFO segments,” he said.

But even Carlson said he was fed up with the total lack of evidence produced by Sidney Powell, one of President Donald Trump’s attorneys, in her unfounded allegation that electronic voting systems had switched millions of ballots to favorPresident-elect Joe Biden.

“We invited Sidney Powell on the show. We would have given her the whole hour,” Carlson said. “But she never sent us any evidence, despite a lot of requests, polite requests. Not a page. When we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her.”

Joe Biden turns 78 today, will be oldest US president — 5 a.m.

By Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden turned 78 on Friday. In two months, he’ll take the reins of a politically fractured nation facing the worst public health crisis in a century, high unemployment and a reckoning on racial injustice.

As he wrestles with those issues, Biden will be attempting to accomplish another feat: demonstrate to Americans that age is but a number and he’s up to the job.

Here’s a timeline of the presidential certification process that Trump is trying to disrupt — 11:53 p.m.

By Maggie Astor, New York Times

As President Donald Trump and his Republican allies continue trying to undermine the election, the certification of the vote totals in each state is the next major step in formalizing President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.

A key part of the GOP strategy has been to delay certification processes in battleground states that Biden won, in the hopes that, if state officials miss their deadlines, legislators will subvert the popular vote and appoint pro-Trump slates to the Electoral College. But that’s extremely unlikely to happen.

Here’s a breakdown of the certification deadlines and other key dates in battleground states, and what will happen between now and Inauguration Day.

Will Lara Trump be the next Trump on a ballot? — 11:46 p.m.

By Annie Karni, New York Times

Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law who emerged during the 2020 presidential campaign as a defender of President Donald Trump’s basest political instincts, is now eyeing a political future of her own in her home state of North Carolina.

As Donald Trump attempts to subvert the election to remain in power, Lara Trump, three allies said, has been telling associates she is considering a run for Senate in 2022, in what is expected to be a competitive race for the first open Senate seat in a very swingy swing state in a generation. Sen. Richard Burr, an unobtrusive Republican legislator who was thrust into the spotlight as chair of a committee investigating the president’s ties to Russia, has said he will retire at the end of his term. Despite expanded turnout in rural areas, Donald Trump won North Carolina by a smaller margin than he did four years ago, just 1.3 percentage points, a sign that overall the state is trending blue and that the race for the Senate seat will be tightly contested by both parties in the first post-Donald Trump election.

Mitt Romney slams Trump efforts as ‘undemocratic’ — 11:29 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Two Republican senators are criticizing President Donald Trump and his team for their efforts to pressure state and local election officials to overturn President-elect Joe Biden’s victories in several closely contested states.

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, one of Trump’s most vocal GOP critics, tweeted Thursday, “It is difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action by a sitting American President.”

Romney accused Trump on resorting to “overt pressure on state and local officials to subvert the will of the people and overturn the election.”

Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., went after Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who held a press conference Thursday presenting a list of far-fetched, thoroughly debunked claims on the 2020 election.

Sasse tweeted: “Rudy and his buddies should not pressure electors to ignore their certification obligations under the statute. We are a nation of laws, not tweets.”

By The Associated Press

Despite a lack of evidence of widespread irregularities or fraud, President Donald Trump’s legal team used a Thursday press conference to go through a laundry list of far-fetched, thoroughly debunked claims on the 2020 election.

Trump attorney Sidney Powell spun fictional tales of election systems flipping votes, German servers storing U.S. voting information and election software created in Venezuela “at the direction of Hugo Chavez” — the late Venezuelan president who died in 2013. She also said Trump beat Democrat Joe Biden “by a landslide,” which he decidedly didn’t — Biden was the clear winner.

Harvard petition demands ‘accountability’ before Trump officials are invited to campus — 10:27 p.m.

By Marisa Iati, The Washington Post

A petition circulating at Harvard University is drawing the ire of some allies of President Donald Trump for demanding that the school require “accountability” for members of his administration before they are allowed to speak or teach on the campus.

The open letter from Harvard affiliates cites Trump’s refusal to concede the presidential election and attempts by some members of his administration to baselessly claim widespread voter fraud. Inviting those Trump allies to Harvard would legitimize subverting democratic norms, warn the signatories, whose names are not visible on the petition.

“That is why today we are asking you to set up a system of accountability for high-level political appointees and Trump administration consultants before they are invited as fellows or to teach or speak on campus,” the letter says. “These accountability guidelines should be publicly shared with students by the end of the calendar year.”

House Democrats want GSA administrator to brief Congress on her refusal to begin transition process — 10:12 p.m.

By Nicholas Fandos, New York Times

House Democrats on Thursday ratcheted up pressure on the head of the General Services Administration to grant President-elect Joe Biden the money and government access set aside by law for the presidential transition process, demanding that she brief lawmakers and possibly testify in public.

In a letter to Emily W. Murphy, the administrator of the sprawling agency, the chairwomen of the House Oversight and Reform and Appropriations committees said it was past time for her to acknowledge Biden’s clear Electoral College victory and grant the letter of “ascertainment” allowing his transition team to begin the transfer of power. They argued that President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede the election should not relieve Murphy of the legal requirement to recognize “the apparent successful candidates.”

Mnuchin to end some fed emergency programs, limiting Biden — 9:50 p.m.

By Jeanna Smialek, New York Times

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he does not plan to extend several key emergency lending programs beyond the end of the year, a decision that could hinder President-elect Joe Biden’s ability to use the Federal Reserve’s vast powers to cushion the economic fallout from the virus.

Mnuchin said Thursday that he would not extend the Fed’s programs that support the markets for corporate bonds and municipal debt, as well a program that extends loans to mid-sized businesses. The programs expire at the end of 2020.

The pandemic-era programs, which are run by the Fed but use Treasury money to insure against losses, have provided an important backstop that has calmed critical markets since the coronavirus took hold in March. Removing them could leave crucial corners of the financial world vulnerable to the type of volatility that cascaded through the financial system in March. And by asking the Fed to return unused funds, Mnuchin could prevent Biden’s incoming Treasury secretary from restarting the efforts in 2021.

Biden calls Trump’s attack on electoral process ‘totally irresponsible’ — 8:48 p.m.

By Michael Crowley and Michael D. Shear, New York Times

In his sharpest condemnation yet of President Donald Trump’s efforts to undermine the legitimacy of the 2020 election, President-elect Joe Biden said Thursday that Trump’s refusal to authorize an orderly transition ensured that he would be remembered as “one of the most irresponsible presidents in American history.”

“It’s hard to fathom how this man thinks,” Biden said in response to a question about the president’s extraordinary interventions in Michigan’s election certification process. “I’m confident he knows he hasn’t won, and is not going to win, and we’re going to be sworn in on Jan. 20.”

But Biden warned that as a result of Trump’s actions, “incredibly damaging messages are being sent to the rest of the world about how democracy functions.”

Biden maintains his lead over Trump as Georgia recount ends — 7:35 p.m.

By Bloomberg

Georgia officials completed a recount of the state’s Nov. 3 presidential vote that showed President-elect Joe Biden keeping his lead in the state, dealing another setback to President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the election results.

The hand recount of the state’s 5 million votes that began Friday was ordered after the initial count found Biden ahead by 14,156 votes, or about 0.3 percentage points.

‘The corruption is unprecedented,’ ‘CHAOS,’ and other love notes to America from the Trump campaign — 6:55 p.m.

By Victoria McGrane, Globe Staff

They come, day after day, a stampede of screaming subject lines dispatched from an alternate universe where the outcome of the presidential election remains in doubt. “F.R.A.U.D.” “The Radical Left. We can’t let them steal this Election.” “We’re making HUGE progress.” “This Election isn’t over.”

Such is the communication from the Trump campaign more than two weeks after Election Day, more than a week and a half after news networks declared Joe Biden the president-elect after he eliminated the last mathematical path to a Trump victory.

Biden says he has decided on treasury secretary — 4:56 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden says he has decided whom to nominate as his secretary of the Treasury Department.

Biden said Thursday that the decision will be announced just before or after Thanksgiving and that “you’ll find it is someone who I think will be accepted by all elements of the Democratic Party, progressives through the moderate coalition.”

Biden spoke to reporters after participating in a video conference with a group of governors from both parties, telling them he wanted to be their partner in the White House. The governors talked about the need for government officials to be clear with Americans about what to expect as the virus surges. He says, “They all acknowledge this is going to take a massive education campaign.”

Biden’s treasury secretary would lead his economic team as many businesses and Americans struggle while the coronavirus pandemic continues.

Biden says there will be ‘no national shutdown’ when he’s in office — 4:50 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is ruling out the possibility of a national lockdown to address the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to reporters in Wilmington, Delaware, on Thursday, Biden said there will be “no national shutdown” when he’s in office because “every region, every area, every community can be different” and a blanket lockdown would be “counterproductive.”

Biden has faced questions about whether he’d pursue a nationwide shutdown to try to rein in the virus after one of the members of his coronavirus task force floated the possibility in an interview. But Biden and other members of the task force have said the proposal is not on the table and is not the best option to address the pandemic.

Biden did say that there may be “constraints” in the “degree to which business can be open,” suggesting federal and state officials would be “calibrating” what can remain open based on the local trends in the pandemic.

Pelosi, Schumer going to Delaware to see Biden — 4:12 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is set to meet in Delaware with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer.

A Biden transition official confirms that Pelosi and Schumer are traveling to Wilmington to meet with the president-elect in person on Friday. The official wasn’t authorized to share internal planning and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday.

Biden spoke with the pair by phone last week about the intensifying pandemic and prospects for passage of a COVID-19 relief bill in the lame duck session of Congress. Biden has made addressing the virus his top priority as he moves forward with his transition.

The meeting comes as President Donald Trump continues to spread misinformation and sow doubt about an election that he lost to Biden. The Trump administration is blocking the Biden team from the official intelligence briefing traditionally afforded to incoming presidents and from collaborating with its coronavirus response team.

Giuliani repeats unsubstantiated claims of broad vote fraud — 3:10 p.m.

By Josh Wingrove, Bloomberg

Rudy Giuliani and other lawyers leading President Donald Trump’s effort to overturn his defeat for re-election described a widespread and implausible fraud on behalf of Joe Biden in a news conference on Thursday, but they offered no new allegations of fraud and presented no evidence for their claims.

Georgia vote discrepancies reconciled on last day of recount — 3:04 p.m.

By Mark Niesse

Election officials corrected vote-counting mistakes and explained an allegation by the Republican Party about miscounted DeKalb County ballots on Wednesday, the final day of Georgia’s manual recount.

The latest unofficial count puts Joe Biden 12,781 votes ahead of President Donald Trump, who gained about 1,400 votes this week that county election officials initially failed to count.

How Native American votes help secure Biden’s win in Arizona — 2:41 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Voter turnout on swaths of tribal land in Arizona surged compared with the 2016 presidential election, helping Joe Biden to victory in a state that hadn’t supported a Democratic in a White House contest since 1996. Native Americans were among the difference-makers who swung the race to Biden in Arizona.

“It truly takes a village,” said Clara Pratte, a political operative and Navajo woman who led national tribal engagements for the Biden campaign. “Could it have been done without a tribal vote? No.”

Trump invites top Michigan lawmakers to White House amid longshot bid to overturn election result — 2:00 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President Donald Trump summoned Michigan’s Republican legislative leaders to the White House for a meeting Friday amid a longshot GOP push to overturn the certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s victory in the battleground state.

Two people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press that Trump invited Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield. They agreed to go, according to a state official aware of the leaders’ plans. The two officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were discussing private conversations.

Rudy Giuliani makes litany of debunked claims in recent media appearances — 1:45 p.m.

By Linda Qiu, New York Times

Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, has spread a litany of falsehoods and conspiracy theories in media appearances and social media over the past week.

Giuliani, who has a long history of fudging the truth and who has led the Trump campaign’s largely unsuccessful legal fight over the election, has focused particularly on debunked claims of barred poll workers and unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about a voting software company affecting the election’s outcome.

Biden reaches out to governors as Trump stymies transition — 11:20 a.m.

By The Associated Press

Joe Biden’s meeting Thursday with a group of Democratic and Republican governors is his latest attempt to fight through President Donald Trump’s unprecedented attempt to block the president-elect’s transition to power.

Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris planned a virtual session in the afternoon with the National Governors Association’s leadership team, which includes five Republicans and four Democrats. All the Democrats and a majority of the Republicans involved have acknowledged Biden as the winner of the White House election.

One expected participant, Gov. Larry Hogan, R-Md., told The Associated Press recently that Trump’s wild and unsupported claims of widespread voter fraud were “dangerous” and “embarrassing.”

Two Wayne County GOP canvassers want to take back their votes certifying Detroit-area results — 9:21 a.m.

By The Associated Press

Two Michigan Republicans who initially blocked certification of election results for the county that includes Detroit despite no evidence of fraud before approving them now say they want to rescind their certification.

Monica Palmer and William Hartmann, the two Republican canvassers in Wayne County, said in a statement issued late Wednesday that they only voted to certify the results after “hours of sustained pressure” and after getting promises that their concerns about the election would be investigated.

“We deserve better — but more importantly, the American people deserve better — than to be forced to accept an outcome achieved through intimidation, deception, and threats of violence,” they said in the statement. “Wayne County voters need to have full confidence in this process.”

Pompeo visits Israeli settlement in 1st by top US diplomat — 8:28 a.m.

By Joseph Krauss, The Associated Press

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has visited an Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank, becoming the first top US diplomat to do so.

A State Department official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the visit to reporters traveling with Pompeo, who were not allowed to accompany him. He arrived at the Psagot winery outside Jerusalem on Thursday.

Earlier, he said he would pay a visit to the Golan Heights. Israel seized the West Bank and the Golan Heights in the 1967 war and later annexed the Golan in a move not recognized internationally.

Wisconsin recount cleared to begin after partisan fight — 8:23 a.m.

By The Associated Press

The Wisconsin Elections Commission has agreed to issue an order to recount ballots in two heavily liberal counties at President Donald Trump’s request, but only after hours of contentious debate that may foreshadow the partisan battle ahead.

Trump paid the $3 million required for the recount and issuing the order was expected to be a pro forma move, but it took six hours for the commission — split 3-3 along party lines — to agree on the order late Wednesday.

“It’s just remarkable the six of us in a civilized fashion can’t agree to this stuff,” Democratic commissioner Mark Thomsen said hours into the debate.

Justice Dept.’s China focus likely to continue under Biden — 6:00 a.m.

By Eric Tucker, Associated Press

President Donald Trump has identified China as the country’s biggest foe and the Justice Department mirrored that emphasis over the last four years with a drumbeat of cases against defendants ranging from hackers accused of targeting intellectual property to professors charged with grant fraud.

But even after a new administration arrives, the law enforcement focus on China may not look radically different, in part because of actions by Beijing that US officials, lawyers and analysts say run afoul of international norms. Even if the anti-China rhetoric is cooled in the White House, cases against agents of the Chinese government may well continue apace, especially since some of the focus — including against trade-secret theft — preceded the Trump administration.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp stays on sidelines of GOP election fight — 1:33 a.m.

By Associated Press

When Gov. Brian Kemp won election two years ago, he pushed back forcefully against an outcry from Democrats who accused him of suppressing voter turnout to improve his odds of winning.

“Look, we have laws on the books that prevent elections from being stolen from anyone,” Kemp, who oversaw that election as secretary of state, said on Nov. 17, 2018, as he urged Georgia voters to accept the results of a close, bitterly contested race against Democrat Stacey Abrams.

In contrast, the Republican governor hasn’t stepped forward to defend the integrity of this year’s elections amid attacks by President Donald Trump and other members of his own party, who claim without evidence that the presidential vote in Georgia was tainted by fraud.

Threats and tensions rise as Trump and allies attack elections process — 12:56 a.m.

By New York Times

President Donald Trump’s false accusations that voter fraud denied him reelection are causing escalating confrontations in swing states across the country, leading to threats of violence against officials in both parties and subverting even the most routine steps in the electoral process.

In Arizona on Wednesday, the Democratic secretary of state, Katie Hobbs, issued a statement lamenting the “consistent and systematic undermining of trust” in the elections and called on Republican officials to stop “perpetuating misinformation.” She described threats against her and her family in the aftermath of Joe Biden’s victory over Trump in her state.

In Georgia, where Biden holds a narrow lead that is expected to stand through a recount concluding Wednesday night, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, has said he, too, received menacing messages. He also said he felt pressured by Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally and the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, to search for ways to disqualify votes.

GOP increasingly accepts Trump’s defeat — but not in public — 12:41 a.m.

By Associated Press

When Kamala Harris returned to the Senate this week for the first time as vice president-elect, her Republican colleagues offered their congratulations and Sen. Lindsey Graham greeted her with a fist bump.

It was a sign that many Republicans have privately acknowledged what they refuse to say openly: Democrat Joe Biden and Harris won the election and will take office in January.

The GOP’s public silence on the reality of Biden’s victory amounts to tacit approval of Trump’s baseless claims of election fraud. That has significant repercussions, delaying the transition during a deadly pandemic, sowing public doubt and endangering Biden’s ability to lead the portion of the country that may question his legitimacy.

Kevin McCarthy, the House minority leader, doesn’t think Trump is going away — 12:26 a.m.

By Jonathan Martin, New York Times

For all the drama around the presidential race, the biggest surprise of the 2020 election may have been in the House, as Republicans gained seats and cut into the Democratic majority after a campaign in which officials in both parties expected the GOP to lose seats.

No Republican leader had more riding on these elections than Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, the minority leader and the man responsible for recruiting many of the newly elected House Republicans. In a recent interview, McCarthy discussed the campaign, how the House is the political equivalent of a baseball farm system and what President Donald Trump’s role in the party will be going forward.

Local officials rebut three dead-voter claims by Trump campaign — 11:09 p.m.

By Davey Alba, New York Times

Last week, the Trump campaign published a series of posts on Facebook and Twitter identifying dead Americans whose names, the campaign alleged, were used to cast votes in this month’s election. The seven people were from Georgia and Pennsylvania, two battleground states that were crucial to Joe Biden’s victory.

At least three of them, however, either did not actually vote in the election or were alive and well and cast legal votes, according to state and county election officials.

Justice Dept. plans three executions before Biden’s inauguration — 10:48 p.m.

By Hailey Fuchs, New York Times

In the final weeks of President Donald Trump’s term, his administration intends to execute three inmates on federal death row, the last scheduled executions by the Justice Department before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, who has signaled he will end federal use of capital punishment.

Since July, when it resumed carrying out the death penalty after a 17-year hiatus, the Trump administration has executed seven federal inmates. Weeks before Biden is sworn in, the three inmates face the prospect of being the last federal prisoners to die by capital punishment for at least as long as he remains in office.

Arizona elections official received threats — 9:05 p.m.

By Bloomberg

Arizona’s top elections official says her family and staff have received violent threats and called on Trump and Governor Doug Ducey to acknowledge the results of the November election.

Secretary of State Katie Hobbs issued a statement blaming the president, members of Congress and other elected officials who have made baseless claims of massive voting fraud for the “threats of violence and vitriol” she’s faced.

“I am calling on other leaders in this state, including the governor, whose deafening silence has contributed to the growing unrest, to stand up for the truth,” she said.

Azar expects virus vaccine ‘continuity’ — 4:51 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar is trying to tamp down concerns the stalled transition of power to President-Elect Joe Biden will scramble the government’s efforts to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine to Americans.

At a vaccine news briefing Wednesday, Azar says “in the event” of a transition, the vast majority of the HHS and Pentagon officials working on vaccine distribution are all career government employees and “there is really just total continuity that would occur.”

The Biden campaign has raised concerns that President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede defeat will only add to the suffering as the coronavirus spreads in many parts of the country.

Azar says HHS cannot begin the transition process until allowed by an obscure agency called the General Services Administration, headed by a Trump appointee.

Trump pushes new environmental rollbacks on way out the door — 4:41 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Down to its final weeks, the Trump administration is working to push through dozens of environmental rollbacks that could weaken century-old protections for migratory birds, expand Arctic drilling and hamstring future regulation of public health threats.

The pending changes, which benefit oil and gas and other industries, deepen the challenges for President-elect Joe Biden, who made restoring and advancing protections for the environment, climate and public health a core piece of his campaign.

“We’re going to see a real scorched-earth effort here at the tail end of the administration,” said Brian Rutledge, a vice president at the National Audubon Society.

President-elect Biden says he’ll celebrate a small Thanksgiving this year — 3:56 p.m.

By Christina Prignano, Globe staff

President-elect Joe Biden said on Wednesday that he’s planning to keep his Thanksgiving celebrations small this year as the coronavirus pandemic spreads rapidly across the country.

Biden said during a virtual meeting with health care workers that although he usually has a big family celebration, he’s keeping it to just three people this year.

“I’ve got a big family you’ve probably heard a lot about. We do everything together,” Biden said. “Well, we’re just not going to, there’s going to be three of us. Because you can’t mix the families.”

Biden calls for GSA to allow official transition to begin — 3:07 p.m.

By Bloomberg News

President-elect Joe Biden said Wednesday the General Services Administration’s delay in allowing the official presidential transition to begin could set back the effort to distribute a coronavirus vaccine by weeks or months.

“We’ve been unable to get access to the kinds of things we need to know about — the depth of the stockpiles, we know there’s not much at all,” Biden said in a virtual meeting with front-line workers, adding that his team doesn’t know the administration’s plan for distributing a vaccine.

“And there’s a whole lot of things that we just don’t have available to us, which unless it’s made available soon, we’re going to be behind by weeks or months,” he said.

The head of the General Services Administration, who was appointed by President Donald Trump, has so far declined to “ascertain” that Biden is the apparent winner of the Nov. 3 presidential vote. Such a move would give Biden’s team access to government data, experts and officials as part of the transition process.

Biden promises to prioritize state virus funding — 2:50 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden says he’s hopeful that Republicans in Congress will be more willing to send money to state and local governments after President Donald Trump leaves office. He’s promising to make such funding a priority when he takes office in January.

Biden suggested Wednesday that Republicans have resisted Democrats’ demand for local funding as part of a pandemic-relief package “because of their fear of retribution from the president.”

Biden says, “Hopefully, when he’s gone, they’ll be more willing to do what they know should be done, has to be done, in order to save the communities they live in.”

The comments came as part of a virtual discussion Biden hosted with front-line health care workers from across the country.

States are facing massive financial shortfalls as a result of lost tax revenue related to the pandemic that may threaten local health care systems, law enforcement and education.

Congressional Democrats and Republicans generally say a new stimulus bill is needed, but they disagree on how much money should go to local governments.

Clark elected by House Democrats to Assistant Speaker position — 12:05 p.m.

By Jess Bidgood, Globe staff

WASHINGTON — Representative Katherine Clark, the Melrose Democrat who has risen swiftly up the ranks of House leadership, was elected Wednesday to the position of assistant speaker, making her the fourth-ranking member in the chamber.

In a closed-door session of House Democrats, held partially in a hotel ballroom in Washington and partially over Zoom, Clark beat out Representative David Cicilline of Rhode Island, 135 to 92.

Trump campaign says it will file for recounts in two Wisconsin counties — 11:21 a.m.

By The Associated Press

President Donald Trump has paid $3 million for a partial recount in Wisconsin and the campaign said in a press release it would file for a recount in two counties: Milwaukee and Dane.

A statewide recount would cost Trump $7.9 million. The $3 million he paid would be enough to cover the $2.8 million cost of a recount in the state’s two most Democratic counties of Milwaukee and Dane. In those counties, Democrat Joe Biden received 577,455 votes. He won statewide by 20,608 votes, based on canvassed results submitted by the counties.

A poll challenger unleashed on Michigan Republicans when they attempted to stop vote certification — 9:36 a.m.

By Shannon Larson, Globe staff

A Michigan businessman’s heated public comment directed toward two Republicans on the Wayne County Board of Canvassers who had voted to block the certification of votes in the Detroit area has gone viral.

Following Ned Staebler’s impassioned remarks, and those of other community members, the two officials reversed course and the board unanimously certified its presidential election results for the state’s largest county Tuesday night.

Deadline near for hand tally of presidential race in Georgia — 1:28 a.m.

By The Associated Press

ATLANTA — Election officials across Georgia are staring down a Wednesday deadline to complete a hand tally of the presidential race in the state.

The hand recount of nearly 5 million votes stems from an audit required by a new state law and wasn’t in response to any suspected problems with the state’s results or an official recount request. The law requires the audit to be done before the counties’ certified results can be certified by the state.

The deadline for the counties to complete the audit is 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, ahead of the Friday deadline for state certification.

The hand count is meant to ensure that the state’s new election machines accurately tabulated the votes and isn’t expected to change the overall outcome, state election officials have repeatedly said.

Lindsey Graham’s long-shot mission to unravel the election results — 12:41 a.m.

By The New York Times

In 2016, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., praised the integrity of the nation’s elections system, criticizing claims by Donald Trump that the vote was “rigged.”

“Like most Americans, I have confidence in our democracy and our election system,” Graham said in a statement on Twitter. “If he loses, it will not be because the system is ‘rigged’ but because he failed as a candidate.”

What a difference four years makes.

Graham, who has transformed during that time to become one of Trump’s most loyal allies, now seems determined to reverse the election’s outcome on the president’s behalf. On Friday, he phoned Brad Raffensperger, the secretary of state of Georgia and a fellow Republican, wondering about the possibility of a slight tinkering with the state’s elections outcome.

Biden’s transition proceeds without Trump assistance — 12:40 a.m.

By The Associated Press

WILMINGTON, Del. — President Trump’s refusal to cooperate with his successor is forcing President-elect Joe Biden to seek unusual workarounds to prepare for the exploding public health threat and evolving national security challenges he will inherit in just nine weeks.

Blocked from the official intelligence briefing traditionally afforded to incoming presidents, Biden gathered virtually on Tuesday with a collection of intelligence, defense and diplomatic experts. None of the experts are currently affiliated with the U.S. government, raising questions about whether Biden is being provided the most up-to-date information about dangers facing the nation.

Pelosi moves toward leading divided House Democrats — 12:38 a.m.

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — House Democrats seem certain to nominate Nancy Pelosi for two more years as speaker, but she’ll be leading a smaller majority divided along ideological lines as it tries shepherding President-elect Joe Biden’s agenda toward enactment.

Pelosi, D-Calif., faced no announced rivals for the post Wednesday as the chamber’s Democrats planned their first-ever virtual leadership elections in response to the pandemic. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., and No. 3 party leader Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., were also on track to retain their positions.

Trump’s firing of Krebs denounced by Boston-area scholars, Dems — 11:38 p.m.

By Jeremy C. Fox, Globe Correspondent

President Trump’s abrupt firing Tuesday of the country’s top election security official who publicly said Trump lost to president-elect Joe Biden in an election drew outrage from Massachusetts political science scholars and officials.

Christopher Krebs, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, had also said the Nov. 3 election was reliable and free of interference. Trump announced his firing on Twitter Tuesday night.

Detroit-area county certifies vote after first blocking it — 9:40 p.m.

By The Associated Press

DETROIT — Michigan’s largest county reversed course and unanimously certified its presidential election results Tuesday night after Republicans first blocked the move in a party-line vote that threatened to temporarily stall official approval of Democrat Joe Biden’s win in the state.

The Wayne County Board of Canvassers acted after the 2-2 tie was condemned by Democrats, election experts and the meeting’s online spectators as a dangerous attempt to overthrow the will of voters.

The board met after days of unsuccessful litigation filed by Republican poll challengers and President Donald Trump’s allies. They claimed fraud during absentee ballot counting at a Detroit convention center, but two judges found no evidence and refused to stop the canvassing process.

Biden crushed Trump in Wayne County, a Democratic stronghold, by more than a 2-1 margin and won the state by 146,000 votes, according to unofficial results.

Michigan secretary of state says Board of State Canvassers may now be responsible for certifying election — 9:20 p.m.

By Shannon Larson, Globe Staff

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson weighed in after Republicans in the state’s largest country blocked the certification of local election results along party lines — a move that could temporarily delay official approval of President-elect Joe Biden’s win in the state. Benson is a member of the Democratic Party.

Should the decision by the Wayne County Board of Canvassers hold, the state Board of Canvassers will be responsible for certifying the county’s election, Benson said in a statement. When similar circumstances have occurred previously, Benson said, state canvassers “have appointed the Bureau of Elections to carry out the processes of canvassing the vote and voter totals.”

Michigan’s Bureau of Elections stands ready to fulfill its duty to complete the canvas for Wayne County, address any clerical errors and improve the quality of the canvass overall. Importantly, this is not an indication that any votes were improperly cast or tabulated.

— Jocelyn Benson (@JocelynBenson) November 18, 2020

“The Bureau stands ready to fulfill this duty and we expect this will address clerical errors and improve the quality of the canvass overall,” Benson said.

Benson said it is common for precincts in not only Michigan but across the country to be “out of balance by a small number of votes,” especially when there is high voter turnout.

“Importantly, this is not an indication that any votes were improperly cast or counted,” she said.

Republicans in Michigan’s largest county block certification of election results — 9:13 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Republicans in Michigan’s largest county blocked the certification of local election results in a 2-2 vote along party lines that could temporarily stall official approval of Joe Biden’s win in the state.

The practical effect of the move may be a delay in ultimately blessing Biden’s victory, with unofficial returns showing he defeated President Donald Trump in Michigan by 146,000 votes. Still, the failure to certify by the Wayne County Board of Canvassers is a boost for Trump, who is grasping for ways to slow down an inevitable defeat.

It could also embolden Republicans in key states to take similar measures on the way to the Electoral College’s final vote on the presidential race on Dec. 14.

Senator Chuck Grassley, 87, says he tested positive for coronavirus — 6:25 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, the longest-serving Republican senator and third in the line of presidential succession, said Tuesday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Grassley announced earlier Tuesday that he was quarantining after being exposed to the virus and was waiting for the results of a test. On Tuesday evening, he tweeted that he had tested positive.

“I’ve tested positive for coronavirus,” Grassley wrote. “I’ll b following my doctors’ orders/CDC guidelines & continue to quarantine. I’m feeling good + will keep up on my work for the ppl of Iowa from home.”

Second Georgia county finds previously uncounted votes — 5:07 p.m.

By The Associated Press

A second Georgia county has uncovered a trove of votes not previously included in the election results, but it doesn’t change the overall outcome of the presidential race, the secretary of state’s office said Tuesday.

Fayette County failed to record 2,755 votes on a single memory card, said Gabriel Sterling, a top official in the secretary of state’s office. That doesn’t change the overall outcome of the race, in which Democrat Joe Biden leads Republican President Donald Trump.

Giuliani spins unsubstantiated tales of election fraud at hearing in Pennsylvania — 4:07 p.m.

By Bloomberg News

President Donald Trump’s long-shot effort to get the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn his election defeat faced its first test Tuesday with a key hearing in Pennsylvania, in which campaign lawyer Rudy Giuliani claimed without evidence that Democrats nationwide conspired to steal the election.

U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann began hearing arguments on Pennsylvania’s motion to dismiss the Trump campaign’s lawsuit seeking to block certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s projected victory in the state. Giuliani, who had been granted permission to participate just before the hearing began, quickly launched into a tale of several cities, including Philadelphia, Detroit, Atlanta and Phoenix, where he said Democratic officials took advantage of the pandemic to push “dangerous” mail-in ballots susceptible to fraud.

Trump is urged by doctors, hospitals to give COVID data to Biden — 2:18 p.m.

By Bloomberg News

Groups representing doctors, nurses, and hospitals urged President Donald Trump to share information about the administration’s coronavirus response with President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team.

Delaying the transition could cost lives as a new surge of cases has put a record number of Americans in the hospital with Covid-19, the groups said Tuesday in a letter to Trump.

“Real-time data and information on the supply of therapeutics, testing supplies, personal protective equipment, ventilators, hospital bed capacity and workforce availability to plan for further deployment of the nation’s assets needs to be shared to save countless lives,” leaders of the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association, and the American Nurses Association wrote in the letter.

Hispanic caucus asks to meet with Biden — 1:50 p.m.

By Associated Press

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus is asking to meet with president-elect Joe Biden to discuss plans and staff for his incoming administration.

In a letter obtained by The Associated Press, the five leaders of the CHC write that they are hoping to “discuss matters urgent to the Caucus, including the composition of your administration and forthcoming legislative agenda.”

They also say they’d like to work with Biden on “critical issues affecting Hispanics,” which include an “equitable recovery to COVID-19,” immigration, equitable education and health care access, racial justice and civil rights protections.

Biden has pledged that tackling immigration will be one of his top priorities as president, but it’s unclear where the issue falls on a long list of legislative promises Biden has made throughout his campaign.

He has, however, already named a number of Latinos to key positions in his White House staff, including Anthony Bernal and Julissa Reynoso Pantaleon, who will both have top roles on Jill Biden’s staff, and Julie Chavez Rodriguez, who will be director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

Trump faces approaching deadline for recount in Wisconsin — 1:07 p.m.

By Scott Bauer, Associated Press

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The final Wisconsin county submitted its canvassed vote totals to the state elections commission on Tuesday morning, starting the clock for President Donald Trump to file for a recount as he has promised supporters he would.

The canvassed totals show Democrat Joe Biden beat Trump by about 20,600 votes, which is a roughly six-tenths of a point margin — close enough for Trump to file for a recount.

He has until 5 p.m. on Wednesday to submit the $7.9 million estimated cost for a statewide recount and other required paperwork. Trump could also file for a recount only in select counties, which would reduce his cost and allow him to target areas where votes were predominantly for Biden. Counties would have to start the recount no later than Saturday and complete it by Dec. 1.

Trump has been promising a recount in Wisconsin as part of fundraising pleas he’s been issuing since he lost the election to Biden, but a campaign spokeswoman stopped short of promising a recount on Tuesday.

Biden filling top White House team with campaign veterans — 11:25 a.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden announced a raft of top White House staff positions on Tuesday, drawing from the senior ranks of his campaign and some of his closest confidants to fill out an increasingly diverse White House leadership team.

Biden confirmed that former campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon will serve as a deputy chief of staff, while campaign co-chair Louisiana Rep. Cedric Richmond and campaign adviser Steve Ricchetti will play senior roles in the new administration. Richmond will leave his Louisiana congressional seat to fill the White House job.

The president-elect also announced that Mike Donilon, a longtime Biden confidant, will serve as a senior advisor; Dana Remus, the campaign’s current general counsel, will be counselor to the president; Julie Chavez Rodriguez, who was one of Biden’s deputy campaign managers, will serve as director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs; and Annie Tomasini, who is currently Biden’s traveling chief of staff, will serve as the director of Oval Office operations.

Twitter says it flagged 300,000 tweets over election disinformation — 10:26 a.m.

By Marcy Gordon, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The CEO of Twitter says the social media site flagged some 300,000 tweets as part of efforts to combat disinformation in the period around the 2020 election between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg are testifying Tuesday at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing called to question their companies’ actions around the closely contested election.

The senators are deeply divided by party over the integrity and results of the election itself.

Facebook, Twitter CEOs facing questions on election measures — 9:01 a.m.

By Associated Press

A Senate panel has summoned the CEOs of Facebook and Twitter to defend their handling of disinformation in the 2020 election between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden. But the senators are deeply divided by party over the integrity and results of the election itself.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing Tuesday to question Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey on their companies’ actions around the closely contested election. The two social media CEOs are expected to testify via video.

Bernie Sanders on outgoing President Trump: ‘He will not be missed’ — 7:31 a.m.

By Rob DeCola, Globe Staff

Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont didn’t pull any of his punches on Twitter Monday as he considered the possible legacy of President Donald Trump when he leaves office in January.

Saying that Trump will be remembered “not just as a racist, sexist, xenophobe, and religious bigot,” Sanders said the 45th US president will go down in history as a demagogue who “attempted to undermine the rule of law and destroy American democracy.”

Donald Trump will go down in history not just as a racist, sexist, xenophobe and religious bigot. He will be remembered as a demagogue who, more than anyone else, attempted to undermine the rule of law and destroy American democracy. He will not be missed.

— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) November 16, 2020

Senators clash over coronavirus mask protocol: ‘There clearly isn’t much interest in this body in public health’ — 7:04 a.m.

By Shannon Larson, Globe Staff

In an exchange that went viral Monday night, Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown took to the Senate floor, with his opening remark being not a political statement, but a request asked of his colleague, Alaska Senator Dan Sullivan. “I’d start by asking the presiding officer to please wear a mask as he speaks.”

Brown, a Democrat, acknowledged that he didn’t have the power to tell his Republican colleague “what to do” in regard to adhering to the coronavirus safety measure before he was interrupted by Sullivan.

“I don’t wear a mask when I’m speaking like most senators,” Sullivan tersely responded. “I don’t need your instruction.”

Democrats bash Graham over claims he pressured Georgia to discard ballots — 6:40 a.m.

By The Washington Post

Democrats on Monday rushed to condemn Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., after Georgia’s Republican secretary of state said that he had pressured him to find ways to throw out mail-in ballots that helped swing the state in President-elect Joe Biden’s favor.

“This is insane and illegal,” Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., said in a tweet responding to a Washington Post report on Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s allegations.

Raffensperger said he was stunned Friday when the South Carolina senator called him and asked several questions about signature matching, including whether the state’s top election official could toss all of the mail-in ballots in counties with high rates of mismatched signatures. Graham, who serves as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, dismissed the suggestion that he had acted inappropriately.

Trump campaign lawsuit over Pennsylvania vote heads to court — 3:08 a.m.

By The Associated Press

A hearing on the Trump campaign’s federal lawsuit seeking to prevent Pennsylvania officials from certifying the vote results remains on track for Tuesday after a judge quickly denied the campaign’s new lawyer’s request for a delay.

U.S. Middle District Judge Matthew Brann told lawyers for Donald J. Trump for President Inc. and the counties and state election official it has sued that they must show up and “be prepared for argument and questioning” at the Williamsport federal courthouse.

The Trump campaign wants to prevent certification of results that give President-elect Joe Biden the state’s 20 electoral votes, suing over election procedures that were not uniform across the state.

Trump to saddle Biden with last-minute flurry of policy moves — 3:07 a.m.

By Bloomberg News

President Trump is rushing to leave his final mark on energy, financial and foreign policy while stalling the transition to President-elect Joe Biden — who warned that further delays in the handoff risk increasing the coronavirus death toll.

The Pentagon told military commanders on Monday it would draw down U.S. deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan to about 2,500 troops in each country by the end of the year. The announcement followed administration moves to escalate tensions with Iran and China, offering the incoming president unenviable choices as he seeks to revive international accords struck under former President Barack Obama.

‘More people may die’: Biden urges Trump to aid transition — 3:06 a.m.

By The Associated Press

WILMINGTON, Del. — President-elect Joe Biden warned of dire consequences if President Trump and his administration continue to refuse to coordinate with his transition team on the coronavirus pandemic and block briefings on national security, policy issues and vaccine plans.

The remarks marked Biden’s toughest to date on Trump’s failure to acknowledge his election loss and cooperate with the incoming administration for a peaceful transfer of power.

“More people may die if we don’t coordinate,” Biden told reporters during a news conference Monday in Wilmington, Delaware.

Head of government agency under pressure to let transition proceed — 12:14 a.m.

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of an obscure federal agency that is holding up the presidential transition knew well before Election Day that she might soon have a messy situation on her hands.

Prior to Nov. 3, Emily Murphy, the head of the General Services Administration, held a Zoom call with Dave Barram, 77, the man who was in her shoes 20 years earlier.

The conversation, set up by mutual friends, was a chance for Barram to tell Murphy a little about his torturous experience with “ascertainment” — the task of determining the expected winner of the presidential election, which launches the official transition process.

Election security experts contradict Trump’s voting claims — 11:18 p.m.

By The New York Times

Fifty-nine of the country’s top computer scientists and election security experts rebuked President Trump’s baseless claims of voter fraud and hacking on Monday, writing that such assertions are “unsubstantiated or are technically incoherent.”

The rebuttal, in a letter to be published on various websites, did not mention Trump by name but amounted to another forceful corrective to the torrents of disinformation that he has posted on Twitter.

“Anyone asserting that a U.S. election was ‘rigged’ is making an extraordinary claim, one that must be supported by persuasive and verifiable evidence,” the scientists wrote. In the absence of evidence, they added, it is “simply speculation.”

Biden to name campaign manager, congressional ally, and close friend to key staff jobs — 11:16 p.m.

By The New York Times

WASHINGTON — President-elect Joe Biden will formally announce key members of his White House staff Tuesday, naming Rep. Cedric L. Richmond of Louisiana to oversee public outreach and installing Jennifer O’Malley Dillon, who managed his presidential campaign, as a deputy chief of staff, a person familiar with the transition said.

Biden will also announce that Steve Ricchetti, a longtime confidant, will serve in the White House as a counselor to the president. All three will most likely have offices down the hall from the Oval Office, making them among the most senior aides in the West Wing.

Trump digs in on baseless claims as legal path narrows — 11:14 p.m.

By The Washington Post

WASHINGTON – President Trump began his third straight week of angry defiance of the election results, brooding behind the scenes about the state of his campaign’s legal challenges and of Georgia’s hand recount while refusing the pleas of some advisers to commit to a peaceful transfer of power.

Despite mounting legal losses in courts and a retreat by his attorneys in a federal case filed against Pennsylvania election officials, Trump dug in on his false claim that he “won” the election.

As tensions among Republicans mount, Georgia’s recount proceeds smoothly — 11:12 p.m.

By The New York Times

ATLANTA — Brad Raffensperger, Georgia’s secretary of state, on Monday accused fellow Republicans of trying to undermine the legitimacy of the state’s election in an effort to swing the results to President Trump, who narrowly lost the state to President-elect Joe Biden and later demanded the hand recount.

Election officials in Georgia also announced Monday evening that they had discovered 2,600 ballots in Floyd County that had not been previously reported to the state, a notable but overall minor hiccup in what they otherwise described as a smooth recounting of the nearly 5 million ballots cast by Georgia voters during the presidential election.

The counting is expected to wrap up this week, and elections officials have reported few problems aside from the error in Floyd County, which is located in northwestern Georgia and voted heavily for Trump. Democrats said the recount had so far resulted in no substantive changes, at least none that would affect the lead currently enjoyed by Biden.

Republicans sound alarm on Georgia Senate runoffs as they privately weigh Trump’s influence — 11:11 p.m.

By The Washington Post

Republican leaders are increasingly alarmed about the party’s ability to stave off Democratic challengers in Georgia’s two Senate runoff elections – and they privately described President Trump on a recent conference call as a political burden who despite his false claims of victory was the likely loser of the 2020 election.

Those blunt assessments, which capture a Republican Party in turmoil as Trump refuses to concede to President-elect Joe Biden, were made on a Nov. 10 call with donors hosted by the National Republican Senatorial Committee. It featured Georgia’s embattled GOP incumbents, Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, and Karl Rove, a veteran strategist who is coordinating fundraising for the Jan. 5 runoffs.

In an eloquent and personal Instagram post, Michelle Obama calls for a smooth transition of power — 9:43 p.m.

By Shannon Larson, Globe Staff

Former first lady Michelle Obama called on the “nation’s leaders” to honor a peaceful presidential transition in a reflective Instagram post on Monday, where she recalled her family’s own experience leaving the White House and how they handled President Trump’s ascension to power in 2016.

Her comments on the election, which Democrat Joe Biden won handily against incumbent Donald Trump in both the popular vote and electoral vote, follow the president’s refusal to concede and fellow members of the Republican Party remaining silent — or even encouraging — his baseless claims of voter fraud and lawsuits filed by his campaign in multiple battleground states.

Georgia’s secretary of state says fellow Republicans are pressuring him to find ways to exclude legal ballots — 8:12 p.m.

By The Washington Post

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said Monday that he has come under increasing pressure in recent days from fellow Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, to question the validity of legally cast absentee ballots in an effort to reverse President Donald Trump’s narrow loss in the state.

In a wide-ranging interview about the election, Raffensperger expressed exasperation over a string of baseless allegations coming from Trump and his allies about the integrity of the Georgia results, including claims that Dominion Voting Systems, the Colorado-based manufacturer of Georgia’s voting machines, is a “leftist” company with ties to Venezuela that engineered thousands of Trump votes to be left out of the count.

The atmosphere has grown so contentious, Raffensperger said, that both he and his wife, Tricia, have received death threats in recent days, including a text to him that read: “You better not botch this recount. Your life depends on it.”

After Trump march: Arrests, accusations, and COVID-19 fines — 6:29 p.m.

By The Associated Press

After a weekend with dozens of arrests and scattered clashes between supporters and opponents of President Donald Trump, both sides took to social media to accuse the other of instigating violence. Meanwhile, a long-standing D.C. bar stands in danger of losing its liquor license after becoming a haven for Trump supporters who refused to follow local COVID-19 restrictions.

All told, 21 people were arrested, including one juvenile, for charges that included disorderly conduct, inciting violence and assault.

The violence took place Saturday night after a largely peaceful day in which 10,000 to 15,000 Trump supporters rallied behind the president’s unfounded claims of massive irregularities and voting fraud. Democrat Joe Biden won the election, but Trump has not conceded.

Republican Burgess Owens defeats Utah congressman McAdams — 6:23 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Democratic US Rep. Ben McAdams of Utah has lost his bid to win re-election against former NFL player Burgess Owens.

McAdams, the state’s only congressional Democrat, conceded in an online news conference Monday afternoon shortly before The Associated Press determined Owens had won the closely watched race in the suburban Salt Lake City congressional district.

Owens is a Republican who has been a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump. He is a frequent Fox News guest who has come under scrutiny for other media appearances linked to QAnon, a baseless conspiracy theory that has increasingly crept into politics.

His spokesman has said Owens doesn’t believe in the theory.

Trump congratulated Owens over the weekend, saying in a tweet: “Great going Burgess, you continue to be a STAR! “

McAdams is a moderate who was part of the so-called blue wave that won control of the U.S. House for the Democrats in 2018. He has focused on kitchen-table issues and occasionally bucked party leadership, though he did vote to impeach the president.

Conservative group alleging voter fraud ends its lawsuits — 5:21 p.m.

By The Associated Press

A conservative group on Monday moved to dismiss voter fraud lawsuits it had filed in four states days after the group’s leader made baseless allegations questioning the integrity of the election.

Lawyers for True the Vote filed notices to dismiss cases in Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania less than a week after suing in all four states. Jim Bopp Jr., an attorney for the group, declined to say why they were ending their lawsuits, but confirmed there were no other cases pending from the group.

The action highlighted the dwindling legal options that President Donald Trump has as he continues to insist — against overwhelming evidence to the contrary — that fraud cost him an election he claims to have won.

Wisconsin presidential recount would cost Trump $7.9 million — 4:08 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President Trump will have to pay $7.9 million if he wants a statewide recount of unofficial results in Wisconsin showing him losing to Democrat Joe Biden by about 20,500 votes.

That is four times higher than what the recount cost four years ago, a cost increase that elections officials said was driven by expenses related to conducting a recount during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Wisconsin Elections Commission released the estimate on Monday, which was based on costs submitted by the 72 counties. The recount could begin as soon as Thursday and be done no later than Dec. 1.

In address, Biden says it would ‘make it easier’ if Trump participated in transition — 3:44 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden says the outgoing Trump administration’s failure to share specific plans on combating the coronavirus pandemic is stymying American businesses’ abilities to find ways to grow and survive in challenging circumstances.

Biden said during a speech Monday in Wilmington, Delaware, that “the sooner we have access to the administration’s distribution plan, the sooner this transition will smoothly move forward.” Specifics that the administration has withheld, Biden said, like vaccine distribution, could help “small businesses and entrepreneurs that are the backbone of our communities but are teetering on the edge.”

Biden says he and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris had an “encouraging” virtual meeting with nine leaders of some of the country’s largest labor unions like the AFL-CIO and corporations, including Microsoft and Target. Biden says the leaders “all agree that means rallying the country behind a national strategy with robust public health measures.”

In her remarks, Harris pledged to shore up the economy by “creating millions of good-paying union jobs.”

Harris says road ahead ‘will not be easy’ — 3:25 p.m.

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris says she and President-elect Joe Biden “don’t have a moment to waste” when it comes to tackling the coronavirus pandemic.

Harris made brief remarks Monday after the two met with business and labor leaders about the coronavirus and its economic impact.

Her comments demonstrate that she and Biden are moving forward despite President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede the election and formally allow the transition process to begin.

Harris says the road ahead “will not be easy.” She says she and Biden witnessed the economic devastation of the pandemic firsthand on the campaign trail.

Hand tally of Georgia presidential race continues — 2:16 p.m.

By The Associated Press

A hand tally of the nearly 5 million votes cast in the presidential race in Georgia appeared to be going smoothly as it entered its fourth day Monday.

The hand count stems from a state law that calls for one race to be audited to ensure the new election machines counted the votes accurately. It was not the result of any suspected problems with the results.

It was up to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to select the race to be audited and he said the presidential race made the most sense because of its significance and the tight margin separating the candidates. Because of that small margin — Democrat Joe Biden leads Republican President Donald Trump by about 14,000 votes — Raffensperger said a full hand recount was necessary.

Perdue declines runoff debates against Ossoff in Georgia — 2:08 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Republican Sen. David Perdue is declining to participate in debates against Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff ahead of their Jan. 5 runoff in Georgia.

Ossoff’s campaign said Monday that Ossoff has accepted six invitations from various media organizations for debates between now and Jan. 5. But Perdue has said no to a Dec. 6 debate hosted by the Atlanta Press Club, and his reelection campaign made it clear that he doesn’t plan on debating Ossoff again.

“We’ve already had two debates in this election,” Perdue campaign manager Ben Fry said in a statement, referring to debates held before the Nov. 3 election, in which Perdue came short of the majority needed to avoid a runoff. “We’re going to take our message about what’s at stake if Democrats have total control of Congress directly to the people,” Fry added.

The race between Perdue and Ossoff is one of two runoffs in Georgia that could determine control of the US Senate. Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, who took office in January after being appointed by Georgia’s governor, faces Democrat Raphael Warnock in the other race.

A win by either Perdue or Loeffler would maintain the Senate majority for Republicans. Dual Democratic victories would yield a 50-50 split in the Senate, with Kamala Harris wielding the tie-breaking vote as vice president.

Facebook, Twitter CEOs to be pressed on election handling — 1:01 p.m.

By The Associated Press

The CEOs of Facebook and Twitter are being summoned before Congress to defend their handling of disinformation in the 2020 presidential election, even as lawmakers questioning them are deeply divided over the election’s integrity and results.

Prominent Republican senators have refused to knock down President Donald Trump’s unfounded claims of voting irregularities and fraud, even as misinformation disputing Democrat Joe Biden’s victory has flourished online.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally who heads the Senate Judiciary Committee where the CEOs will testify Tuesday, has publicly urged, “Do not concede, Mr. President. Fight hard.”

Both Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey promised lawmakers last month that they would aggressively guard their platforms from being manipulated by foreign governments or used to incite violence around the election results — and they followed through with high-profile steps that angered Trump and his supporters.

Twitter and Facebook have both slapped a misinformation label on some content from Trump, most notably his assertions linking voting by mail to fraud. On Monday, Twitter flagged Trump’s tweet proclaiming “I won the Election!” with this note: “Official sources called this election differently.”

Biden set to address plans for economy as pandemic rages — 12:42 p.m.

By The Associated Press

President-elect Joe Biden is set to outline his plans to revive the nation’s economy in the midst of a global health crisis on Monday as he pushes forward with his transition to the White House despite President Trump’s refusal to accept the election results.

Biden, who will take office on Jan. 20, is scheduled to speak alongside Vice President-elect Kamala Harris from his makeshift headquarters in Delaware. Before the speech, they will meet virtually with a collection of labor and business leaders.

Hardening partisan map steepens Democrats’ climb in Senate — 12:37 p.m.

By The Associated Press

Pinned six years in the minority, Democrats have an uphill but real shot at wresting Senate control in January, with more opportunities in 2022. Yet as states increasingly sort themselves along hardening partisan lines, it’s complicating Democrats’ drive to win the majority and keep it.

Thanks to this month’s elections, Democrats will own all four Senate seats from purple Arizona and increasingly blue Colorado next year. If they can win January runoffs for both seats from Georgia, which has recently teetered toward them, they’ll command the Senate thanks to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote in what would be a 50-50 chamber.

Yet even as Democrats have made those gains and others since surrendering control in the 2014 elections, they’ve lost foundations of their old majority that will be hard to recapture.

Trump aide promises ‘very professional transition’ to Biden — 11:13 a.m.

By The Associated Press

President Trump’s national security adviser promised a “very professional transition” to the administration of President-elect Joe Biden in an interview broadcast Monday, even as Trump continues to falsely claim he won the November election.

Speaking to the Global Security Forum hosted in part by Qatar, Robert O’Brien several times mentioned the transition and referred to recent peace deals that Bahrain, Sudan and the United Arab Emirates struck with Israel as “a great legacy for the president to have as he leaves office.”

While caveating that Trump did have outstanding court challenges, O’Brien’s comments signaled some of the firmest statements yet from a senior administration official acknowledging Biden’s win in the Nov. 3 vote.

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