White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany sought to clarify President Donald Trump’s comments from Wednesday evening during which he refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the Nov. 3 election.
Watch the briefing in the video player above.
Speaking to reporters at the White House briefing Thursday, McEnany said repeatedly that “the president will accept the results of a free and fair election.”
But she said Trump does want to “get rid of mass, mail-out voting,” which he claims without evidence will lead to massive fraudulent ballots.
During a news conference Wednesday Trump said, “We’re going to have to see what happens,” responding to a question about committing to the results. “You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster.”
By Thursday, McEnany maintained the president “will accept the will of the American people.”
McEnany was also asked whether Trump has had any conversations with the family of Breonna Taylor, a day after a grand jury decided not to indict officers in Taylor’s fatal shooting.
She said she’s not aware of any conversation but that their “hearts go out to her family.”
Asked what the president’s message is to Taylor’s family, McEnany said what happened is “a horrible tragedy” and that their hearts are also with the two police officers who were shot Wednesday night during protests in Louisville.
McEnany also says boos and chants aimed at the president as he visited the Supreme Court on Thursday to honor the last Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg were “appalling.”
“I think that the chants were appalling, but certainly to be expected when you’re in the heart of the swamp,” said McEnany during press briefing.
“I travel with the president all across the country, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Florida, Nevada. And everywhere we go, the streets are lined with support like I don’t think any other president has had previously.”
Crowds gathered near the Supreme Court could be heard booing, chanting “Vote him out” and “Honor her Wish,” as Trump and his wife Melania stopped near Ginsburg’s casket.
Trump walked back into the court as the chants grew louder.
The president is expected to announce his nominee to replace Ginsburg on Saturday.
He has said he will select from a list of five women. Republicans are working to move quickly to a confirmation vote, possibly even before the Nov. 3 election.
Ginsburg’s granddaughter has said it was Ginsburg’s wish that a replacement justice be chosen by the winner of the November presidential election.
When asked about that, McEnany responded “I’ve noted before, twenty nine times has an appointment been made in an election year.”
“That was all twenty nine times when there was a vacancy at hand. So the precedent is very much on our side here,” McEnany said.