Trump teases he may not have a peaceful transfer of power if he loses
Donald Trump (Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

President Donald Trump was aghast when he was asked in the presidential debates if he would agree to a peaceful transfer of power.

The moment in the debate came when he dodged the question for weeks, refusing to agree to the long-standing tradition of presidents handing over the reins to the next leader.

"Well, we'll have to see what happens," Trump told reporters during a White House news conference. "You know that."

After weeks of bad press about it, Trump said he would agree to it.

"They spied heavily on my campaign and they tried to take down a duly elected sitting president, and then they talk about 'will you accept a peaceful transfer?' And the answer is, yes, I will, but I want it to be an honest election and so does everybody else," Trump said, adding, "When I see thousands of ballots dumped in a garbage can and they happen to have my name on it, I'm not happy about it."

As a fact-check, there weren't thousands of ballots dumped in a garbage can anywhere in the United States. Trump invented the conspiracy after six ballots were found in a trash can.

While in Ohio Saturday, however, Trump seemed to change his tune.

"Then they talk about, if you lose will this be a friendly transition. And I said, 'let me answer your question: When I won did they give me a friendly transfer?' They spied on my campaign. They did all this stuff. That was not a friendly transition."

A peaceful transfer of power is the hallmark of a stable democracy, which is why so many leaders ask about it. When Trump was elected, there were protests, but a war never broke out and his supporters weren't attacked or killed at his inauguration.

No one ever spied on Trump's campaign in 2016. If there were people who illegally spied or committed a crime, Attorney General Bill Barr and federal prosecutors could order an arrest. If Trump's own government can't put forth proof of Trump's claim much less take anyone to court of the alleged spying, it's clear even they know it's a conspiracy theory. PolitiFact also called the claim false.

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