CEOs of some the largest banks are among U.S. business leaders who are urging President Donald Trump to acknowledge Joe Biden as the winner of the election and start a transition process.
They were among more than 150 executives signed an open letter today demanding that the Trump administration affirm that Mr. Biden has won the election and issue the paperwork required for his team to begin a transition. Doing so would make money and resources available to the incoming administration.
"Every day that an orderly presidential transition process is delayed, our democracy grows weaker in the eyes of our own citizens and the nation's stature on the global stage is diminished," according to the letter. "Withholding resources and vital information from an incoming administration puts the public and economic health and security of America at risk."
Among the 164 signers were Goldman Sachs Group CEO David Solomon; BlackRock CEO Larry Fink; Jon Gray, president of private equity firm Blackstone Group; and George H. Walker, CEO of money manager Neuberger Berman. Peter Grauer, chairman of Bloomberg LP, also signed the letter.
Business leaders are growing more concerned that a delayed transition could slow efforts to manage the coronavirus pandemic and roll out new vaccines, which are critical for New York City's return to financial health. Midtown offices are still largely empty, and local businesses are suffering as employers keep their workers home indefinitely.
One of Mr. Trump's highest-profile supporters on Wall Street, Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman, said Monday that the election's outcome was "very certain" and it's time for the president to move on from legal challenges to the vote. He isn't listed among signers of the letter.
Prior to drafting of the letter, New York Attorney General Letitia James was asked to reach out to the city's business leaders to discuss what might be done, according to a published report.
A group of Democratic state attorneys general thought New York executives would "have influence in convincing Republicans around the country that this should be over, that the transition should be acknowledged, and that it was a frightening proposition that this would remain unresolved," said Kathryn Wylde, CEO of the Partnership for New York City.