Joe Biden warns 'more people will die' if Trump blocks transfer of power

16 November 2020, 23:35

Biden has said "more people will die" if Trump does not work with him on the transition
Biden has said "more people will die" if Trump does not work with him on the transition. Picture: PA

By Kate Buck

US President-Elect Joe Biden has warned "more people will die" from coronavirus if Donald Trump doesn't ensure a smooth transfer of power.

Outgoing-President Trump has repeatedly refused to concede his election defeat, instead choosing to convince the people that they should not believe the numbers that clearly demonstrate his rival's win.

Rather, he is making baseless claims of massive fraud, demanding recounts and calling for audits in an effort to discredit the outcome and, in the process, put democracy itself on trial.

Reports have suggested Trump is also blocking Biden's team from being briefed on the coronavirus and efforts to distribute a vaccine.

But in a country which is currently gripped by the pandemic - and has recorded 1 million new infections in the past 6 days alone - bringing it under control is essential.

So far in the US, almost a quarter of a million Americans have died from the virus.

Trump, seen golfing on Sunday, is said to be blocking Biden's team from being briefed on the pandemic
Trump, seen golfing on Sunday, is said to be blocking Biden's team from being briefed on the pandemic. Picture: PA

Speaking in Delaware Monday, Biden said: "More people may die if we don't co-ordinate.

"As my chief of staff would say when we handled ebola - a vaccine is important, but it's of little use until you're vaccinated... how do we get over 300 million Americans vaccinated, what's the game plan?

"It's a huge undertaking to get it done, prioritise those greatest in need... (the Trump administration) say they have this Warp Speed programme that's not only dealt with getting vaccines, but also how to distribute this.

"If we have to wait until 20 January to start that planning it puts us behind over a month, a month and a half."

Dr Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, also said "it would be better" if Biden's transition team could begin working with government health officials.

Dr Anthony Fauci, also said "it would be better" if Biden&squot;s transition team could begin working with government health officials
Dr Anthony Fauci, also said "it would be better" if Biden's transition team could begin working with government health officials. Picture: PA

"Of course it would be better if we could start working with them," he told reporters.

"As you know, I've been through multiple transitions now, having served six presidents for 36 years.

"And it's very clear that the transition process that we go through ... is really important in a smooth handing over of the information as well as it's almost like passing the baton in a race.

"You don't want to stop and then give it to somebody, you want to essentially keep going."

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