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Ohio GOP governor: 'Joe Biden is the president-elect'

Ohio's GOP Gov. Mike DeWineMike DeWineRepublicans eye primaries in impeachment vote Shellshocked GOP ponders future with Trump Governors respond to violence at Capitol MORE on Thursday said that Joe BidenJoe BidenFear of insider attack prompts additional FBI screening of National Guard troops: AP Iran convicts American businessman on spying charge: report DC, state capitals see few issues, heavy security amid protest worries MORE is the president-elect as President TrumpDonald TrumpIran convicts American businessman on spying charge: report DC, state capitals see few issues, heavy security amid protest worries Pardon-seekers have paid Trump allies tens of thousands to lobby president: NYT MORE questions the legitimacy of the election results. 

"I think that we need to consider the former vice president as the president-elect," DeWine told CNN's John Berman in an appearance on "New Day." 

"Joe Biden is the president-elect," he continued. "The president and his campaign have every right to go into court. Our courts are open. Our courts are the best place, frankly, to adjudicate facts. I'm a former prosecutor. I'm a great believer to have your courts and go in to make a case and they have every right to do that, and that looks like what they're trying to do."

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DeWine's comments on Thursday come after he congratulated Biden on his win in a statement on Monday.

However, his comments contrast with Ohio's Republican Party, which has appeared to encourage Trump to push forward with his legal challenges in key battleground states.

“With many legal challenges to vote counts still to come, it was premature and irresponsible for the news media to declare Biden the winner of the presidential election,” the Ohio GOP tweeted on Monday. "The president has every right to bring legal challenges where he thinks fraud has occurred, & we support him!”

The Hill reached out to the state party for comment on Thursday. 

Trump won the state in the election, carrying 53 percent of the vote. 

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Vermont Gov. Phil Scott have been the only other GOP governors to congratulate Biden on his victory.

Trump is alleging, without evidence, that widespread voter fraud led to an "illegal" and illegitimate contest. Additionally, the administration has not signed off on beginning the transition with Biden's team. 
 
Baker and Hogan criticized Trump for this on Wednesday, warning it was dangerous during the global coronavirus pandemic.