Washington, DC – The co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Election Legitimacy Initiative, Michael Steele and Donna Brazile, who headed the RNC and DNC respectively, have issued the following urgent statement on the importance of both presidential candidates accepting the November election results:
Each candidate must listen to the will of the American people and accept the election results. That is how power has passed peacefully since the founding of our nation, and it’s how we continue American democracy for another 200 years.
As President Reagan noted in his first inaugural address: “The orderly transfer of authority as called for in the Constitution routinely takes place as it has for almost two centuries and few of us stop to think how unique we really are.”
We do not know who will win the presidency in 2020. We do know that the voting process will work largely as expected and responsible election officials will take the necessary time to accurately count the ballots.
Candidates up and down the ballot must accept the outcome—even if it takes time—and refrain from publicly acting in ways that undermine the legitimacy of voting in America.
We live in a highly polarized country during a time of many challenges, but it must be the voters that decide who wins the elections in November.