- Joshua Roberts/Reuters
- Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer condemned President Trump for trying to “bully” Florida into calling the highly-contested Senate race going through a recount this week.
- Schumer also said the recount should continue beyond the weekend deadline if need be.
WASHINGTON – Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer railed against President Donald Trump on Tuesday as the recount for the Senate race in Florida dragged on a week beyond Election Day.
Flanked by Sen. Bill Nelson, the Democrat at risk of being unseated by the Republican challenger Gov. Rick Scott, Schumer tore into the president for asserting that Nelson should have already conceded the election.
“If he really wants an honest and fair election, President Trump will stop bullying, harassing, and lying about the vote in Florida and let the election proceed without the heavy hand of the president tipping the scales of justice,” Schumer told reporters.
Schumer, who declined to take questions from reporters in the Capitol, also called for extending the Sunday deadline put in place to finish the recount if need be.
“Right now the state of Florida has a Sunday deadline for the hand recount. This rule stems from the 2000 Bush v. Gore recount and was put in place because the recount in 2000 was in danger of taking so long that the Electoral College would meet without knowing Florida’s results,” he said. “Fortunately with the Senate race, there is no Electoral College. That means supervisors of the elections should have all the time they need to count every Floridian’s ballot to make sure the candidate with the most votes is actually seated in January, even if the vote count has to go beyond Sunday.”
Trump has been vocal about the race, even calling for Nelson to drop out before the recount has been concluded.
“When will Bill Nelson concede in Florida?” Trump wrote on Twitter Tuesday morning. “The characters running Broward and Palm Beach voting will not be able to ‘find’ enough votes, too much spotlight on them now!”
Trump also claimed there was foul play and that the results at the end of election night should be honored instead.
“The Florida Election should be called in favor of Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis in that large numbers of new ballots showed up out of nowhere, and many ballots are missing or forged,” he wrote on Twitter. “An honest vote count is no longer possible-ballots massively infected. Must go with Election Night!”
Scott has remained ahead in the race and recounts rarely result in a reversal, but the rhetoric on both sides of the aisle has only grown more heated in the week since the election.