WATCH: Trump Says, “I Have Not Conceded,” Says We’d “Have A Different President” But For Mike Pence
It’s June of 2021. President Joe Biden was inaugurated in January, nearly half a year ago. Donald Trump lost the election in November, two months before that. He left the White House on inauguration day and has been living in Florida. However, he wants you to know, he still hasn’t conceded, and he still blames Mike Pence for not overturning the election.
Trump appeared on the right-wing media network Real America’s Voice for a phone interview, in which host David Brody tried really hard to get him to respond to rumors that he expects to be reinstated (despite there being no mechanism for that in the U.S. Constitution), a rift with Mike Pence, and his most recent apparent concession.
Brody didn’t have a lot of luck with that, but did manage to keep Trump on topic enough to get some partial answers: the ex-president denies that he conceded, says he “likes” Mike Pence but is disappointed in him (before going on to blame Pence, again, for failing to overturn the election in his favor), and as for reinstatement, insists that “the people will decide.” (Spoiler: there’s no mechanism for the people or anyone else to ‘reinstate’ an ex-president who lost an election.)
“Well, I’ve always liked Mike and I’m very disappointed that he didn’t send [the electoral vote] back to the legislatures [to do over]…I was disappointed that he didn’t send it back. I felt he had the right to send it back and he should have sent it back. That’s my opinion.”
While it’s likely true that this is Trump’s opinion, there doesn’t appear to be any truth to the notion that he espouses in it — Pence and legal experts have all said that the Vice President had no way to change the outcome in this situation.
As for Trump’s purported concession, it’s hardly the first time he’s sounded like he was admitting that he knows he lost. For instance, on November 15th, he said that Biden had won. The most recent apparent concession took place on Sean Hannity’s show, where Trump said, “We lost.”
Trump admits he didn’t win the election live on Fox News with Sean Hannity: “We didn’t win”.
— SarasMedia (@Sarasmeida) June 17, 2021
However, as before, he maintains that he didn’t admit that he’d lost the election (despite using the words “we lost”).
“No, I never admitted defeat. We have a lot of things happening right now. I think that that was an election that was — I don’t think, all you have to do is read the newspapers and see what’s coming out now. No, I never — the word is concede — I have not conceded.”
Trump’s ‘reinstatement’ has been a buzzword for a bit. First there were reports that he was telling people he would be reinstated by August. Then, Lara Trump came out with a denial — although she never denied Trump was telling people he’d be reinstated — instead she denied that there were any plans in place to make it happen — which, again, cannot.
Now his supporters are, predictably, expecting reinstatement. Mike Lindell has even claimed it’ll happen by fall.
So, here’s Trump’s opportunity to make it clear to the public that reinstatement isn’t a process that exists at all, and that he knows it isn’t happening. Instead, he says this (which Brody afterward describes as Trump being very “disciplined” and “smart.”)
“I’m not going to comment on that. I’m going to just see what happens. If the election was fraudulent people are going to have to make up their own minds. It’s not going to be up to me. It’s going to be up to the public. It’s going to be up to perhaps politicians. I don’t think there’s ever been a case like this where hundreds of thousands of votes will be found. So we’ll have to see what happens.”
That’s the former President of the United States declaring that he sees a possibility that the people might find a way to reinstate him after his loss. It seems relevant to insert a reminder here that he has previously suggested to his fans that they had the power to return him to office after his loss — and the result was the January 6th attack on democracy and the nation.