Breaking from Republican nominee Donald Trump, the Republican National Committee has announced it will accept the results of the November election, no matter the outcome.
On Oct. 19, shortly after the third and final presidential debate, RNC communications director Sean Spicer was asked by reporters if the committee would side with Trump if he refused to accept the results of the November election.
“We expect to win this race, so it’s not going to be an issue, but regardless, we will accept the will of the people,” Spicer told The Huffington Post.
In recent weeks, Trump has been asserting that the presidential election will be rigged against him through a combination of media bias and voter fraud.
During the debate, the business mogul refused to answer whether he would accept the results of the election and help facilitate a peaceful transfer of power.
“I will look at it at the time,” Trump said.
When pressed by debate moderator Chris Wallace about the constitutional importance of accepting an election’s outcome, Trump responded “I’ll keep you in suspense.”
Spicer insisted that Trump would ultimately accept the outcome of the presidential election and would not throw the country’s confidence in democracy into disarray.
“I think right now he’s very concerned about the bias that exists in the media,” Spicer told ABC News. “I think he wants to make sure people ... are focused on the election. But he will accept the results. No question about it.”
Several Republican activists, strategists and operatives have privately expressed outrage over Trump’s latest comments.
“His answer on not accepting the results of the election are disqualifying -- and that’s not an ‘elite’ position,” an anonymous Ohio Republican told Politico.
Another Ohio Republican wondered why Trump would employ such a controversial strategy.
“Conspiracy theorists will love it, but they’re all voting for him anyway,” the Ohio Republican said. “How does this add to his coalition when he’s behind? It doesn’t.”
One anonymous Florida Republican stated, “I’m embarrassed for, by and of him.”
An anonymous New Hampshire Republican dismissed the potential risks of Trump’s refusal to accept the election results as “a non-issue with voters. Only the elite care.”
On Oct. 20, Trump doubled down during a campaign rally in Delaware, Ohio. The GOP nominee told his supporters that he would gladly accept the results of the election -- as long as he wins, CNN reports.
“I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters and to all of the people of the United States that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election,” Trump said.
“If I win.”