WASHINGTON - US President Donald Trump said late Monday he is advising his team to begin "initial protocols" for a transition to President-elect Joe Biden’s administration.
Emily Murphy, the administrator of the US General Services Administration (GSA), an independent agency of the government, informed Biden in a letter that he can now access millions of dollars in federal funds and other resources to begin his transition to power.
"As stated, because of recent developments involving legal challenges and certifications of election results, I have determined that you may access the post-election resources and services described in Section 3 of the Act upon request," she said.
Murphy said she made the decision independently, citing law and available facts.
"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," she added.
In a tweet, Trump thanked Murphy for her dedication to the country.
He said Murphy “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! 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.”
The tweet came weeks after the Nov. 3 presidential election as Biden is the projected winner and is set to be inaugurated in January. Trump disputes the election results and claims he will win the White House race.
Yohannes Abraham, the executive director of Biden’s transition, welcomed the news from the GSA.
"This final decision is a definitive administrative action to formally begin the transition process with federal agencies.
"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," said Abraham.