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Republican Arkansas governor: Trump beginning transition process more 'significant' than a concession

Arkansas Gov. Asa HutchinsonAsa HutchinsonTrump to attend private RNC donor retreat The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Tanden's odds plummet to lead OMB Former Trump officials eye bids for political office MORE (R) on Sunday credited President TrumpDonald TrumpSouth Carolina Senate adds firing squad as alternative execution method Ex-Trump aide Pierson won't run for Dallas-area House seat House Oversight panel reissues subpoena for Trump's accounting firm MORE for beginning the transition process, calling it more important than conceding the election to President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenIntercept bureau chief: minimum wage was not 'high priority' for Biden in COVID-19 relief South Carolina Senate adds firing squad as alternative execution method Obama alum Seth Harris to serve as Biden labor adviser: report MORE.

“[Biden] is president-elect, we need to work on that transition. I applaud President Trump for initiating that transition,” Hutchinson said on “Fox News Sunday.” He added that “the worst thing that can happen” for the deployment of vaccines and continuity on the federal coronavirus response “is we do not have a smooth handoff.”

“We’re working with the transition, we expect [Biden] to be sworn in on January 20,” Hutchinson told guest host Bret Baier. “The words of President Trump are not quite as significant” as the transition process being underway, he added.

“I understand the legal reason why he should not [concede] because he has some appeals our going but… it’s President-elect Joe Biden,” Hutchinson said.

While Trump has refused to concede to Biden, continuing to make baseless claims of voter fraud and mounting legal challenges to the outcome of the election, he has authorized General Services Administration to begin the transition process.

As for the Trump campaign's legal challenges, Hutchinson on Sunday said, “the courts have not seen any evidence of such extensive fraud … scores of courts have looked at that.”

Hutchinson is one of a handful of Republican governors who urged Trump to allow the transition to begin while the administration was stonewalling the process earlier in November.

“It is very important that Joe Biden have access to the intelligence briefings to make sure that he is prepared,” Hutchinson told NBC’s Chuck ToddCharles (Chuck) David ToddBrown vows Democrats will 'find a way' to raise minimum wage Fauci lays out timeline for vaccinating teens, children Trudeau: Canadian, US border to remain closed 'for now' MORE in mid-November.

“During times of transition, our enemies have an opportunity to take advantage of us, and we want to make sure that there is a smooth transition, particularly when it comes to the vaccine distribution, the coronavirus, that everybody understands what we're doing there and what the plan is for the future,” he added.