By Jon King /

Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin called on Republican leaders, “from the President’s cabinet to local elected officials here in Michigan, to choose: fealty to President Trump, or democracy.”

The statement followed comments Thursday by Trump in which he sought to undermine confidence in the nation’s election, making unsupported accusations from the White House about the integrity of the results in his race against Democrat Joe Biden. “This is a case when they are trying to steal an election, they are trying to rig an election,” said Trump of Democrats, whom he accused of corruption while providing no evidence.

He made similar claims about election integrity during the 2016 campaign, which he went on to win. This time, he was speaking not as a candidate, but as the sitting president of the United States.

Slotkin, who won a close re-election fight in a district that has supported Trump in both 2016 and 2020, said the comments were, “presenting a real test for the people who have downplayed the president’s anti-democratic words and deeds. Leaders can no longer dodge their responsibilities to our democracy. These responsibilities are bigger than one man or any one party. Senior cabinet officials need to signal, clearly and publicly, that they will not aid the president’s attempts to undermine our elections. Senior Republican elected officials need to speak out, now, to make clear they will not participate in attempts to thwart the will of the voters. If you remain silent, you are complicit.”

Biden took a different tack than Trump, speaking briefly to reporters after attending a COVID-19 briefing to declare that “each ballot must be counted. I ask everyone to stay calm. The process is working,” said Biden. “It is the will of the voters. No one, not anyone else who chooses the president of the United States of America.”

The candidates’ sharply contrasting postures intensified a national moment of uncertainty as the nation and the world waited to learn which man would collect the 270 electoral votes needed to capture the presidency. Trump pursued legal options with little success, working the phones and escalating efforts to sow doubt about the outcome of the race.

Slotkin says the issue is not about one political party versus another. “I am not asking my colleagues to support Joe Biden. I am asking you to stand up for our country."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.