United States President Donald Trump refused to publicly commit to accepting the results of the upcoming presidential election in November, while also declining to say if the Confederate flag was an offensive symbol.
In an interview with Fox News host Chris Wallace broadcast on Sunday, Trump said it was too early to make such an ironclad guarantee, echoing a similar threat he made weeks before the 2016 vote and scoffing at recent polls that show him lagging behind presumptive Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
“I have to see. Look … I have to see,” Trump said. “No, I’m not going to just say yes. I’m not going to say no, and I didn’t last time either.”
The Biden campaign responded: “The American people will decide this election. And the United States government is perfectly capable of escorting trespassers out of the White House.”
While considered remarkable that a sitting president would express less than complete confidence in American democracy’s electoral process, the statement follows Trump’s playbook of four years ago, when in the closing stages of his race against Hillary Clinton he said he would not commit to honouring the election results if the Democrat won.
Pressed during an October 2016 debate about whether he would abide by the voters’ will, Trump responded he would “keep you in suspense”.