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Biden transition adviser: Legal action for ascertainment of win 'isn't our preference'

Biden transition adviser: Legal action for ascertainment of win 'isn't our preference'
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President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden eyes bigger US role in global vaccination efforts Trump says GOP will take White House in 2024 in prepared speech Kemp: Pulling All-Star game out of Atlanta will hurt business owners of color MORE’s senior transition adviser said Sunday that legal action isn’t the “preference” to achieve General Services Administration (GSA) ascertainment of the former vice president's win. 

CNN’s Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperOmar: Minneapolis community is 'on edge' around Chauvin trial GOP governor: Infrastructure proposal looks more like the Green New Deal Sanders says 'a lot more work has to be done' on 'human infrastructure' MORE asked senior adviser Jen Psaki on "State of the Union" if Biden’s team will take legal action if GSA Administrator Emily Murphy continues to refuse to make the ascertainment after the vote is certified in enough states to officially ensure his election.

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Psaki responded by pointing out “there’s a rising tide of impatience” among Biden, business leaders and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.

“Legal action isn’t our preference,” she said. “If it was, we would have done it days ago because we've known the clear outcome for two weeks now, and that’s the only trigger for ascertainment.”

The senior transition adviser said the Biden team plans to keep putting “public pressure” on the GSA, especially as the former vice president moves forward with naming planned Cabinet members this week.

“A key part of getting that group of individuals confirmed is FBI background checks,” she said. “FBI background checks cannot happen unless there’s ascertainment. And I expect not just Democrats, but Republicans in the Senate, to be outraged that they won’t have access to that information.”

“It could take weeks for that to happen,” she said. “So that’s another pressure point we’ll see in the coming days.”

Murphy, President TrumpDonald TrumpHarry Reid reacts to Boehner book excerpt: 'We didn't mince words' Man arrested for allegedly threatening to stab undercover Asian officer in NYC Trump says GOP will take White House in 2024 in prepared speech MORE’s GSA administrator, has declined to recognize Biden as the president-elect. 

Her ascertainment would permit Biden's aides to have access to government officials and intelligence, as well as funding for salaries and travel. But the Biden team is in limbo, attempting to move forward with transition without that information.

Biden and his team have said over the past two weeks that legal action remains on the table in order to get access to transition materials.