Trump slammed over “pathetic” election fraud claims
An increasingly isolated Donald Trump is refusing to stand down from his claims the election was stolen from him, as even his most loyal family members reportedly urge him to accept defeat.
In a series of tweets early Friday, the ousted president insisted "the Election was a HOAX".
This was despite a hand recount in key state Georgia confirming Democrat Joe Biden had won and widespread criticism of the desperate and unsupported claims made by Mr Trump's controversial legal team.
As Team Trump suffered another three legal losses, Mr Biden's lawyer described efforts to overturn the election result as "pathetic".
"There is harm being done to the democratic process," Bob Bauer said. "There is, however, no chance whatsoever that Donald Trump could be successful in what it is that he is trying to do."
It came as First Daughter Ivanka Trump and her senior White House Adviser husband Jared Kushner were reported to be urging Mr Trump to preserve his legacy and let go of his improbable legal challenges.
"Even Jared and Ivanka think this is going nowhere," reported influential political news site Axios in an article titled: "Trump is on an island".
In her first White House briefing for seven weeks, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany refused to give a time frame for Mr Trump handing over to Mr Biden.
"Right now there is ongoing litigation," she said.
"There are very real claims out there that the campaign is pursuing."
It came a day after Mr Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani drew widespread ridicule after he sweated his way through a press conference making wild allegations of election fraud with black hair dye or mascara running down his face.
Mr Giuliani's claims, along with those of Trump lawyer and conspiracist Sidney Powell, sparked bipartisan criticism.
Sacked cybersecurity official Christopher Krebs, who was ousted by Mr Trump after describing the 2020 poll as "the most secure in American history", slammed the pair's unproven fraud claims.
"That press conference was the most dangerous 1hr 45 minutes of television in American history. And possibly the craziest," Mr Krebs tweeted.
"If you don't know what I'm talking about, you're lucky."
And conservative superstar Tucker Carlson, the highest rating Fox News prime time host, expressed frustration at the lack of proof of electoral fraud offered by Team Trump's lawyers.
He described his evening program as "open minded", noting that "we literally do UFO segments".
But he couldn't support claims from Mr Trump and echoed by Ms Powell that computer voting systems switched the votes of millions away from the Republican candidate.
"We invited Sidney Powell on the show. We would have given her the whole hour," Mr Carlson said at the opening of his Thursday night show.
"But she never sent us any evidence, despite a lot of requests, polite requests. Not a page. When we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her."
Meanwhile, would-be president Joe Biden celebrated his 78th birthday on Friday, local time.
Mr Biden will be the oldest sworn-in president if he takes the top job on January 20, with his predecessor Donald Trump having previously held the record when he was aged 70 on January 20, 2017.
Previously, Ronald Reagan had the senior honours, having been 69 years old on his Inauguration Day in 1981.
Mr Biden's age and mental acuity had featured heavily in Republican attacks during the election campaign with Mr Trump often describing him as "senile".
It has also drawn focus on Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, 55, whose opponents say will shortly step into the top job, given Mr Biden's age.
Originally published as Trump slammed over "pathetic" election fraud claims