It's been more than two weeks since Election Day, and President Trump still refuses to concede to Joe Biden, or even publicly acknowledge the loss. Alarming as that is, equally distressing is the fact that there are plenty of people within his administration as well as his personal orbit, who have enabled the president's protective fantasy of remaining in office after this coming January.
Among those people is Emily Murphy, Trump's appointed head of the General Services Administration, who has pointedly refused to sign the requisite paperwork necessary to begin the official transition process from an outgoing administration to an incoming one.
Now, thanks to Murphy's stalling, the Biden campaign has been reduced to begging for donations to make up the $10 million ordinarily provided by the GSA to facilitate the official presidential transition.
The fundraising effort, launched on Friday afternoon, allows potential donors to give in escalating denominations of $15 to $5,000, explaining that:
During these unusual times, your support is appreciated more than ever before. Your contribution to the Biden-Harris Transition will help us lay the foundation to lead a just and equitable recovery that builds an economy for the future. Thank you for your generosity and continued support as we prepare to build our nation back better.
The request, however, has prompted a significant amount of pushback on Twitter, where users have questioned why Biden — who closed out the 2020 election with nearly half a billion dollars on hand — would need to solicit funds from ordinary people? In fact, nowhere on the fundraising page linked in Biden's tweet does it mention the fact that the campaign has already raised an estimated $8 million from major donors who have agreed to help make up the lost transition money.
"The Biden-Harris transition has been planning for months for all possible scenarios," a transition official said in a statement to Politico. "While we wait for the GSA administrator to uphold the will of the people and be a proper steward of taxpayer resources, we will execute on contingency plans, including continuing to solicit private funds to support transition planning."
While Biden's request may appear shocking considering the massive amount of money raised during the campaign itself, his is not the first transition effort to solicit funds outside the GSA's usual allotment. In preparing for a possible electoral victory in 2012, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney augmented the GSA's transition funding with his own donor-provided funds to cover expenses such as staff salaries.