British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel all offered congratulations in calls to Joe Biden, who a week earlier edged out Trump in the presidential election.
The leaders of close US allies on Tuesday telephoned President-elect Joe Biden and pledged to work together but in an extraordinary break, America’s top diplomat Mike Pompeo insisted that Donald Trump would remain in power.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel all offered congratulations in calls to Biden, who a week earlier edged out Trump in the presidential election.
“I’m letting them know that America is back. We’re going to be back in the game. It’s not America alone,” Biden told reporters in his home state of Delaware.
The transition team said Biden planned to work with the Europeans on fighting the Covid-19 pandemic as well as climate change — one of many areas on which Trump sharply differed with the allies.
On the call with Merkel, who has been savaged by Trump over her welcome to migrants and Germany’s modest defense expenditure, Biden in a statement “praised her leadership” and called for “revitalizing the trans-Atlantic relationship, including through NATO and the EU.”
Johnson, who had a warm relationship with Trump, spoke for 20 minutes with Biden and wrote later on Twitter that he hoped to work with him on climate change, “promoting democracy and building back better from the pandemic,” employing the slogan from the Democrat’s campaign.
All fellow leaders of the Group of Seven industrialized democracies have congratulated Biden as have some of Trump’s closest allies, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
US media outlets concluded Saturday that Biden enjoyed unassailable leads in major states as well as a commanding edge in the nationwide popular vote.
But Trump has refused to concede and has vowed legal challenges, saying without evidence that there was massive electoral fraud.
Pompeo, Trump’s secretary of state, made clear that Trump’s stance was official government policy as he brushed aside a question on whether he was cooperating with the Biden transition team.
“There will be a smooth transition to a second Trump administration,” Pompeo said in a sometimes testy news conference.
He said that “the world should have every confidence” in the functioning of the US government in the run-up and after the January 20 inauguration.