World

Trump lashes out at election result at Georgia rally

VALDOSTA, GEORGIA: President Donald Trump made clear Saturday he had no intention of relinquishing his baseless claims that last month's election was stolen from him, telling a raucous crowd at his first post-poll rally he would somehow still win.

In a speech remarkable for its twisting of reality more than a month after the Nov 3 election, the outgoing president launched into another litany of allegations that the polls won handily by Democrat Joe Biden were rigged.

The crowd in Valdosta, Georgia, for what was nominally a rally in support of two Republican Senate candidates facing a hugely consequential run-off election roared in support.

In a nearly two-hour speech Mr Trump, 74, declared he would not concede, at times sticking to his script but regularly going off-the-cuff for his more incendiary claims.

"We're winning this election," Mr Trump told the rally, "It's rigged. It's a fixed deal."

His stance has raised the question of how he will react when Mr Biden's Jan 20 swearing-in date arrives.

"The swing states that we're all fighting over now, I won them all by a lot," Mr Trump said, falsely.

"And I have to say, if I lost, I'd be a very gracious loser. If I lost, I would say, I lost, and I'd go to Florida and I'd take it easy and I'd go around and I'd say I did a good job. But you can't ever accept when they steal and rig and rob."

There had been concerns from some Republicans over whether Mr Trump's continuing claims of fraud would drive down voter turnout among Republicans in the upcoming election.

The run-off election will decide which party controls the US Senate.

"The voters of Georgia will determine which party runs every committee, writes every piece of legislation, controls every single taxpayer dollar," Mr Trump said.

"Very simply, you will decide whether your children will grow up in a socialist country or whether they will grow up in a free country."

If Democratic challengers Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff defeat Republican senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, the Senate will be evenly divided at 50-50, meaning Democratic Vice President Kamala Harris would cast any deciding votes, as the Constitution dictates. - AFP

WORLD