WASHINGTON, DC — Speaking to the nation Thursday evening from the White House, President Donald Trump doubled down on baseless claims that Democrats are trying to "steal" the 2020 presidential election from him by counting legally cast votes.
Democrat Joe Biden is leading in the electoral vote count, making the path to a second term increasingly difficult for the president, who hasn't been seen publicly since early Wednesday morning when he made a premature declaration of victory.
As a crush of mail-in ballots are tabulated, Trump's lead is slipping in key states that will decide the election.
In his remarks, Trump offered no evidence to support his allegations of election fraud, baseless claims he has been making for months after states made accommodations for more mail-in voting amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"If you count the legal votes, I easily win," Trump said, raising concerns about the validity of absentee ballots allowed under state election laws, falsely claiming "they make people corrupt."
Trump said his campaign will be bringing "tremendous litigation" in states where legally cast votes are still being counted.
"We want an honest election. We want an honest count," he said.
Trump also unleashed harsh criticism of pre-election polling that showed him trailing Democrat Joe Biden and claiming without evidence that the ballot-counting process is unfair and corrupt.
Two days following Election Day, Americans are still waiting to see if Biden will become the 46th president of the United States or if Trump will secure a second term.
The fate of the presidency currently rides on a record number of mail-in ballots still being counted in the battleground states of Pennsylvania, Georgia, North Carolina, Nevada and Arizona.
Biden currently has 264 electoral votes, compared with Trump's 214, according to projections by The Associated Press. Biden expanded his lead Wednesday when he picked up Michigan and Wisconsin's combined 26 electoral votes.
Any of four states — Pennsylvania with 20 electoral votes, Georgia with 16, North Carolina with 15 or Nevada with six — would give him the 270 electoral votes needed to become president-elect.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.