Romney after Trump briefing: 'Counting every vote is at the heart of democracy'

Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyWarren, Daines introduce bill honoring 13 killed in Kabul attack Overnight On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — GOP senator: It's 'foolish' to buy Treasury bonds Democrats aim for maximum pressure on GOP over debt ceiling MORE (R-Utah) shared that he believes “counting every vote is at the heart of democracy” after President TrumpDonald TrumpKinzinger says Trump 'winning' because so many Republicans 'have remained silent' Our remote warfare counterterrorism strategy is more risk than reward Far-right rally draws small crowd, large police presence at Capitol MORE challenged the electoral process and claimed that the election was being stolen during remarks from the White House on Thursday. 

Romney, in a statement posted to Twitter on Thursday, did not directly name the president, but encouraged Americans to have faith in the democratic process.

“Counting every vote is at the heart of democracy. That process is often long and, for those running, frustrating. The votes will be counted. If there are irregularities alleged, they will be investigated and ultimately resolved in the courts. Have faith in democracy, in our Constitution, and in the American people,” Romney said in a statement on Twitter.

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Trump on Thursday claimed without evidence that that the election was fraudulent and challenged the electoral process as his opponent, Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenSunday shows preview: Coronavirus dominates as country struggles with delta variant Did President Biden institute a vaccine mandate for only half the nation's teachers? Democrats lean into vaccine mandates ahead of midterms MORE, closed in on 270 electoral votes. 

“If you count the legal votes, I easily win. If you count the illegal votes, they can try to steal the election from us. If you count the votes that came in late, we’re looking at them very strongly,” Trump told reporters.

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The president also claimed that he had already won states like Michigan, Georgia and Pennsylvania. The Associated Press has not called the race in Georgia or Pennsylvania, and the outlet has called Biden as the winner in Michigan, in addition to several other news outlets.

The president also lashed out at urban areas such as Philadelphia and Detroit, accusing them of being corrupt and claiming that they “cannot be responsible for engineering the outcome of a presidential race.”

Trump on Thursday also tweeted “stop the count,” as election officials continue to tally ballots cast legally. His campaign later said his comments were directed toward ballots that might have been illegally cast.  

Biden is in a good position to take the Electoral College, with The Associated Press calling the state of Wisconsin for the former vice president in addition to Michigan on Wednesday.

Biden is also in the lead in Arizona and Nevada, and is closing in on Trump's lead in Pennsylvania and Georgia.