November 23, 2020 6:07 pm
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President Donald Trump directed General Services Administrator Emily Murphy and the rest of his administration Monday to formally begin the transition process with President-Elect Joe Biden.

“I want to thank Emily Murphy at GSA for her steadfast dedication and loyalty to our Country,” the president tweeted. “She has been harassed, threatened, and abused – and I do not want to see this happen to her, her family, or employees of GSA. Our case STRONGLY continues, we will keep up the good fight, and I believe we will prevail!” (RELATED: GOP Reportedly Plans To Block Certain Biden Cabinet Picks, Dems May Offer ‘Sacrificial Lamb’)

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 20: U.S. President Donald Trump looks on in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on November 20, 2020 in Washington, DC. U.S. President Donald Trump held his first press conference in over a week to make an announcement on prescription drug prices as he continues to challenge the results of the 2020 Presidential election. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 20: U.S. President Donald Trump looks on in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on November 20, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

“Nevertheless, in the best interest of our Country, I am recommending that Emily and her team do what needs to be done with regard to initial protocols, and have told my team to do the same.”

CNN also reported that Murphy sent a letter to Biden’s transition team on Monday formally notifying them that the transition had begun.

“I take this role seriously and, because of recent developments involving legal challenges and certifications of election results, am transmitting this letter today to make those resources and services available to you. Please know that I came to my decision independently, based on the law and available facts,” Murphy wrote. “I was never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official—including those who work at the White House or GSA—with regard to the substance or timing of my decision. To be clear, I did not receive any direction to delay my determination.

“GSA does not dictate the outcome of legal disputes and recounts, nor does it determine whether such proceedings are reasonable or justified,” she continued. “These are issues that the Constitution, federal laws, and state laws leave to the election certification process and decisions by courts of competent jurisdiction. I do not think that an agency charged with improving federal procurement and property management should place itself above the constitutionally-based election process. I strongly urge Congress to consider amendments to the Act.

US President-elect Joe Biden leaves the Queen after meeting virtually with the United States Conference of Mayors in Wilmington, Delaware, on November 23, 2020. - US President-elect Joe Biden on Monday named the deeply experienced Antony Blinken for secretary of state, also nominating the first female head of intelligence and a czar for climate issues, with a promise to a return to expertise after the turbulent years of Donald Trump. (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)

US President-elect Joe Biden leaves the Queen after meeting virtually with the United States Conference of Mayors  (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)

Biden transition director Yohannes Abraham called the announcement “a needed step to begin tackling the challenges facing our nation, including getting the pandemic under control and our economy back on track.”

“This final decision is a definitive administrative action to formally begin the transition process with federal agencies,” Abraham wrote in a statement. “In the days ahead, transition officials will begin meeting with federal officials to discuss the pandemic response, have a full accounting of our national security interests, and gain complete understanding of the Trump administration’s efforts to hollow out government agencies.”

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