(CN) — President-elect Joe Biden said President Donald Trump’s refusal to accept the outcome of the national election is endangering a smooth transition necessary to ensure an effective rollout of coronavirus vaccines that many experts believe will end the pandemic.
“If we have to wait until Jan. 20, it puts us behind,” Biden said in an appearance with his running mate Kamala Harris on Monday. “There needs to be coordination now or as rapidly as possible to get that done.”
Trump lost the election by a significant margin, amassing 232 electoral votes to Biden’s 306. Many margins in states like Pennsylvania, where Trump has focused much of his efforts to contest the election, were not close, with Biden holding an advantage of more than 60,000 votes in the Keystone State.
Yet Trump continues to spout evidence-free assertions that the election was stolen from him, concentrating his ire on conspiracy theories involving voting machine companies and large-scale frauds tied to mail-in ballots.
Biden said the president’s behavior is more embarrassing then detrimental in most regards, though cooperation over the vaccine rollout is imperative.
“It’s more embarrassing for the country than debilitating to my efforts to get started,” Biden said Monday morning.
Biden also touted his ability to bring leaders of the corporate world together with labor leaders to discuss the best way to get the American economy on track, as millions of workers remain unemployed and several small businesses continue to founder on the brink of ruin.
“We can come together around the same table and advance areas of common interest,” Biden said.
But Biden also said Congress and the president need to work together now to put together another round of stimulus funds to help the American worker and small business entrepreneurs.
“The money is there,” Biden said of another round of pandemic relief.
He also said the federal government, which unlike cities and states is allowed to spend even with a deficit, should distribute some of its funds to states and local governments to help them balance their budgets, saying many police officers, firefighters and mental health workers are on the verge of losing their jobs to the detriment of the communities they serve.