Politics

Trump campaign divided on path to victory, as some advisors push president to fight on

Key Points
  • Joe Biden leads in Pennsylvania. A win there would give him enough votes to win the Electoral College.
  • Shortly after NBC News announced that Biden surged into the lead in Pennsylvania, Trump's campaign said in a statement that the "election is not over."
  • Yet, behind the scenes, several aides privately acknowledge that the president has no clear path to victory, while Trump's closest advisors are saying otherwise.
U.S. President Donald Trump is reflected as he arrives to speak about the 2020 U.S. presidential election results in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., November 5, 2020.
Carlos Barria | Reuters

There is a growing rift within President Donald Trump's campaign over the path ahead as Joe Biden leads in Pennsylvania and other key swing states, putting him on the precipice of enough wins to secure an Electoral College victory.

Shortly after NBC News announced Friday morning that Biden surged into the lead in Pennsylvania, Trump's campaign said in a statement that the "election is not over."

Yet, behind the scenes, several aides privately acknowledge that the president has no clear path to victory, while Trump's closest advisors are saying otherwise, according to people familiar with the matter.

These people declined to be named in order to speak freely.

Rudy Giuliani, the president's attorney, is one of the people trying to persuade the president to stay in the race. The former New York mayor is one of the surrogates who has pushed for legal action on behalf of the president.

Larry Kudlow, the director of the National Economic Council, told CNBC on Friday that Trump plans to continue to fight back in the election but that there will be a peaceful transition of power if he loses.

A person within Trump's data operation, however, privately acknowledged that there may not be a clear path for the president to come back.

Rather, the campaign is hanging its hopes on legal efforts that have so far proven to be fruitless in affecting the vote count, this person said.

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White House advisor Larry Kudlow: Trump intends to fight, but there'll be a peaceful transfer