Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney brashly told President Trump to “put his big boy pants on” and “acknowledge the fact that he lost” the Keystone State on Friday, even though the count of approximately 40,000 outstanding ballots there is expected to continue through the weekend.
Democratic presidential nominee and Pennsylvania native Joe Biden opened up a narrow lead over Trump in the must-win swing state overnight — surging two days after the polls closed thanks to mail-in ballots from the Democratic cities of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
Approximately 40,000 votes still need to be counted and the race is too close to call, with local officials anticipating a result in the days to come, Philadelphia City Commissioner Lisa Deeley said.
During the press conference, Kenney, a Democrat, unloaded on Trump for spewing “baseless claims of fraud for which his team has not produced one iota of evidence” and said the race was over.
“I think what the president needs to do is, frankly, put his big boy pants on,” Kenney told reporters.
The Associated Press has still not called the race, citing a close margin and a large number of outstanding votes.
As of Friday afternoon, Biden was ahead by 13,478 ballots with 96 percent of the vote counted — a lead of just 0.2 percent — after trailing Trump by more than 600,000 ballots on Election Day.
According to the AP, Pennsylvania state law requires a recount if the margin between the two candidates is less than 0.5 percent.
Still, Kenney blasted the Trump campaign for its frantic and unproven claims that Democrats were trying to “steal” the Keystone State from Trump.
“He needs to acknowledge the fact that he lost, and he needs to congratulate the winner, just as Jimmy Carter did, just as George H.W. Bush did, and frankly just as Al Gore did,” he said, calling on Trump to “let us move forward as a country.”
The remarks are sure to infuriate the president’s re-election campaign, which has been trying to fight the results with a flurry of litigation, demanding the Philadelphia count be halted until its poll observers were given better access to polling stations to review the process.
But an exasperated US District Judge Paul Diamond quickly nixed the appeal and instead suggested each party be allowed 60 observers inside a hall at a downtown convention center where the final ballots are being counted.
“Really, can’t we be responsible adults here and reach an agreement?” the judge asked. “The whole thing could (soon) be moot.”
Biden is currently leading the Electoral College, 253-214, and a win in the Keystone State would vault him over the 270 electoral votes he needs to become president. The Associated Press and Fox News have the current Electoral College tally at 264 for Biden and 214 for Trump, as they have called Arizona for the former veep.
At a White House briefing on Thursday evening, the president didn’t seem to understand how his once-commanding lead had been eviscerated by votes still being counted.
“We were up by nearly 700,000 votes in Pennsylvania. I won Pennsylvania by a lot and that gets whittled down to, I think they said now we’re up by 90,000 votes, and they keep coming and coming and coming, they find them all over,” he said, adding that “our numbers started miraculously getting whittled away in secret.”