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Republicans who have broken with Trump to congratulate Biden on his win

Trump has refused to concede the race, and the vast majority of Republicans in Congress and elsewhere have yet to acknowledge the Democrats' victory.
Image: Democratic vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris introduces Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential nominee Joe Biden at an election rally, after news media announced that Biden has won the 2020 U.S. presidential election, in Wilmington, Delaware
Kamala Harris and Joe Biden greet supporters in Wilmington, Del., on Saturday.Andrew Harnik / Pool via Reuters

A small but growing group of prominent Republicans has broken with President Donald Trump and the rest of their party in congratulating President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their projected election victory.

Trump has refused to concede the race, and the vast majority of Republicans in Congress and elsewhere have yet to acknowledge the Democrats' win. A Trump appointee in the General Services Administration has also refused to sign a letter that allows access to government resources for a presidential transition.

Here are the Republicans who have publicly acknowledged the president-elect and vice president-elect.


Mitt Romney of Utah extended his congratulations to both the president-elect and the vice president-elect on behalf of himself and his wife, Ann, in a statement on Twitter: "We know both of them as people of good will and admirable character," Romney wrote. "We pray that God may bless them in the days and years ahead."

Romney also told reporters on Nov. 10 that Biden should be given the tools to begin a transition.

"It's very much in our national interest, in our foreign policy interest, national security interest, to make sure that if there's a new team that may become the leadership team, that they be given all access as quickly as possible,” Romney told NBC News.

Susan Collins of Maine released a statement congratulating Biden and Harris on their "apparent victory," but also acknowledging Trump's efforts to question the election results. She urged patience during the vote count, saying "The process has not failed our country in more than 200 years, and it is not going to fail our country this year."

John Cornyn of Texas, when asked if Biden would be the next president, replied "I haven't seen anything that would change the outcome."

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska released a congratulatory statement in which she said she will be ready to work with their administration. "While we may not always agree, I will work with them to do what is right for Alaska — just as I will continue to emphasize collaboration and bipartisanship with my colleagues in a narrowly divided Senate," she wrote.

Jim Risch of Idaho acknowledged Biden as president-elect, in an interview with The Spokesman-Review. “This is my second transition where we move from one political party to another in the White House,” he said, adding that the transition "is a change in the music playing in the background."

Mike Rounds of South Dakota has sidestepped questions about the president's unfounded claims of voter fraud but told NBC News on Nov. 10 that Biden should have the access to resources during the transition.“Well, with regard to the transition itself — I think they should be able to work out any issue between them, to allow certain parts of it to move forward."

Marco Rubio of Florida referred to Biden as "president-elect" when discussing a potential member of his cabinet. Asked if he believed Biden was president-elect, Rubio said "Well ultimately that's what the results, the preliminary results seem to indicate you certainly have to anticipate if that's the highest likelihood at this point."

Ben Sasse of Nebraska extended congratulations on behalf of himself and his wife, Melissa, according to the Omaha World-Herald. "Today in our house we pray for both President Trump and President-Elect Biden, that both would be wise in the execution of their respective duties during this important time in our nation," Sasse said.

Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania told Pittsburgh television station WTAE on Nov. 10 that it is likely that Biden is the next president and it's important for a transition process to begin. “We're on a path it looks likely Joe Biden is going to be the next president of the United States," he said. "It's not 100% certain but it is quite likely, so I think a transition process ought to begin.”

Bill Cassidy of Louisiana said in a statement that he voted for Trump, but Joe Biden won — after Michigan certified its results on Monday. He urged a transition “for the sake of the country.” “President Trump’s legal team has not presented evidence of the massive fraud which would have had to be present to overturn the election,” he added, nodding at Trump's legal efforts in six swing states.


Fred Upton of Michigan raised his hand to work with the president-elect and both sides of the aisle in Congress, saying, "We have to find a way to come together, bridge divisions and focus on solutions that help the millions who are struggling." Upton quoted Fredrick Douglass in his statement, writing, "I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong."

Francis Rooney of Florida congratulated Biden on a "successful campaign" and called for all Americans "to come together to support" him. Rooney urged bipartisanship, saying "our nation will only be successful if the new admin is."

Will Hurd of Texas wished the president-elect good luck and urged Americans to come together and "respect the decision" of the voters. "More unites us than divides us; we can find common ground," he said. "I hope the president-elect can embody this."

Tom Reed of New York extended his congratulations "out of respect and deference to the moment" after calling for transparency in vote counts. "We are ready to come together, work as one and help all Americans through the difficult times ahead," he said.

Paul Mitchell of Michigan released a statement congratulating both Biden and Harris on a "hard-fought" campaign. "America now looks to you to lead our country and unite us for the common good," he said.

Adam Kinzinger of Illinois offered congratulations on behalf of himself and his wife, Sofia. "Our nation deserves two competing parties who can work together when possible, and compete honorably when not."

Denver Riggleman of Virginia extended his congratulations to both Biden and Harris. "We should all work together in the spirit of helping America as those in 'loyal opposition'... not hate."

John Shimkus of Illinois congratulated both Biden and Harris on their win, highlighting the importance of a transfer of power. "The peaceful transition of power is a signal to the world of the strength of democracy and the resilience of our Republic. Even though I supported his opponent, I wish President-elect Joe Biden well."

Don Bacon of Nebraska acknowledged Biden's win, saying he respects the will of the voters. “I believe the handwriting is on the wall that Joe Biden has been elected as the next President.”

John Curtis of Utah said in a statement that Biden should be acknowledged as president-elect "until a judicial decision determines wrongdoing," while congratulating Harris on her historic win. "Given the opportunity to address Joe Biden, I would tell him that I will take him at his word that he will be a unifier and a president to all, including those of us that did not vote for him — I stand ready to help."

Don Young of Alaska said that he wishes Biden well in "the most challenging chapter of his political career," in a statement. "I call on President-elect Biden to listen carefully to those who did not vote for him."

Dusty Johnson of South Dakota said in a statement that he has supported Trump’s legal efforts, but that “these efforts have not been successful, and it’s time for the administration to begin the transition process.”


Charlie Baker of Massachusetts congratulated the president-elect and vice president-elect on their victory after a "long and divisive campaign." "It is critical for us all to focus on the very real and immediate challenges facing this nation."

Phil Scott of Vermont congratulated the next president and vice president on their historic moment, saying it is his "greatest hope that they will be successful in uniting our country and leading us forward through these difficult times." "The voters have spoken," Scott said. "It is now up to all of us to rise above the anger and divisiveness and to turn our focus to common humanity and love of family, freedom and country. This is what real leadership would call on us to do — win or lose."

Gov.-elect Spencer Cox of Utah extended "heart-felt congratulations" on behalf of himself and his wife, Abby. "Thank you for your commitment to unite us all," Cox said. "We pray for you and promise to work with you to benefit the people of Utah."

Larry Hogan of Maryland congratulated the president-elect and said Americans need to come together "now more than ever" to face the "great challenges" ahead for the country. "Everyone should want our president to succeed because we need our country to succeed," Hogan said.

Mike DeWine of Ohio told CNN that people "need to consider the former vice president as the president-elect. Joe Biden is the president-elect. The White house has every, or the president and his campaign, has every right to go into court. Our courts are open. Our courts are the best place, frankly, to adjudicate facts." As a former prosecutor, he said, "I'm a great believer in the ability to have your courts and go in to make a case. And they have every right to do that, and that looks like what they're trying to do."

Chris Sununu of New Hampshire acknowledged Biden's win in a press conference. “Joe Biden is the president-elect."

Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas said on "Meet the Press" that he expects Biden to be the next president and stressed the importance of Biden receiving intelligence briefings. “I expect Joe Biden to be the next president of the United States. It was good, actually, to see President Trump tweet out ‘he won.’ I think that’s the start of an acknowledgment.”

Notable Republicans

Cindy McCain, the wife of Sen. John McCain, released a statement congratulating her "dear friend" Biden and Harris after endorsing them in September. "It's time to move beyond politics and toward building a stronger America," McCain said. "I know Joe will unify the country toward a better future."

Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, tweeted his congratulations, saying he will be praying for the president-elect and his success. "Now is the time to heal deep wounds," Bush said. "Many are counting on you to lead the way."

John Kasich, the former governor of Ohio who endorsed Biden, congratulated the president-elect on Twitter. "I know you will do as you promised and be a president for the whole country," he said.

Former President George W. Bush also extended his "warm congratulations" to Biden, becoming the most prominent Republican to do so. In his statement, Bush said he spoke to the president-elect and thanked him for his "patriotic" victory speech, and also called Harris to congratulate her on her historic election. "I know Joe Biden to be a good man, who has won his opportunity to lead and unify our country. The president-elect reiterated that while he ran as a Democrat, he will govern for all Americans. I offered him the same thing I offered Presidents Trump and Obama: my prayers for his success, and my pledge to help in any way I can."

Mike Rogers, the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Biden should begin to receive the President's Daily Brief, citing national security threats. In his statement he said "our adversaries aren't waiting for the transition to take place," and that Biden "needs to know what the latest threats are and begin planning accordingly."

Bob Corker, the former senator of Tennessee, congratulated Biden on Twitter. "I congratulate President-elect Biden and wish him well as he organizes to lead our country."