President-elect Joe Biden will face a massive problem to overcome with the American public from the moment he takes office, new polls suggest.
An overwhelming majority of Republicans believe the election was "stolen" from Donald Trump and do not accept Joe Biden as the legitimate President-elect, two new polls have found.
Politico's 2020 Voter Priorities Survey published this week found 79 per cent of Republicans believe the November 3 election was stolen through illegal voting and fraud by Democrats.
"They are 100 per cent correct, but we are fighting hard," Trump tweeted on Tuesday about the findings.
"Our big lawsuit, which spells out in great detail all of the ballot fraud and more, will soon be filled. RIGGED ELECTION!"
The report, which surveyed 1500 voters online between November 10 and 19, also found 12 per cent of Biden voters agreed that the election was stolen.
"Mr Trump's messaging that focused on illegal voting and fraud has resonated for nearly eight in 10 of his voters," the report notes.
The findings echo a Rasmussen survey last week, which found 61 per cent of Republicans believed Democrats stole the election, compared with an equal number of Democrats who said it was "not at all likely".
Among independents, 29 per cent believed it was stolen while 45 per cent did not.
The Rasmussen poll, which sampled 1000 voters by phone and online between November 17 and 18, found just 37 per cent of Republicans believed Trump should concede, versus 84 per cent of Democrats.
Of those who wanted Trump to concede, 15 per cent agreed even though they believed the election was stolen.
"The older the voter, the less supportive they are of Trump conceding the election to Biden," Rasmussen noted. "Whites oppose concession more strongly than blacks and other minority voters do."
On Tuesday, the President touted another poll from conservative cable channel Newsmax, which found "98.9 per cent" said he should not concede.
"For the good of our country we must prevail!" he tweeted.
In Politico's survey, 62 per cent of Trump voters said they did not accept the results of the election, while 97 per cent of Biden voters did.
The study also examined voters' attitudes towards the media, America's electoral system, and the opposing party.
Among Trump voters, 83 per cent said the media was "the enemy of the people" and that it "misinforms the public and influences opinions towards their own agenda".
Biden voters overwhelmingly supported the media, with 72 per cent saying it is "not the enemy of the people" and that it "has an important role in our democracy and keeps our elected officials accountable by fact-checking".
"Americans are split on what's holding us back as a country," the report said. "Trump voters believe it's the media. Biden voters believe it's our leaders."
Predictably, the study found Biden voters were more likely to find left-leaning news sources such as CNN, MSNBC and the New York Times credible.
Trump voters, by contrast, were more likely to believe Fox News and smaller right-wing outlets like cable channel OANN and the Breitbart website.
And despite its prominent coverage in the media, very few people believed in the right-wing "QAnon" conspiracy theory.
The same number of Democrats and Republicans – just 3 per cent – said they found it credible.
While the former vice-president is on track to lock in a commanding 306-232 electoral college victory, just 32 per cent of Democrats wanted to keep the traditional method of electing presidents, compared with 61 per cent of Republicans.
Nearly 60 per cent of Biden voters said the US should use the popular vote instead.
Biden has now received nearly 80 million votes in total – another record – versus nearly 74 million for Trump.
Meanwhile, 81 per cent of Republican voters said they had less respect for Democrats than they did four years ago, while 77 per cent of Democrats felt the same towards Republicans.
"The 2020 election proved how divided America is as a nation," the report said.
The findings come as Trump and his lawyers continue to make as-yet-unproven allegations of widespread voter fraud in their attempts to overturn the results.
Should they prove unsuccessful, the belief among tens of millions of the President's supporters that his successor is not legitimate will cast a pall over the Biden administration and further divide an already deeply fractured country.
Biden was declared the presumptive President-elect earlier this month after edging ahead of Trump in key battleground states including Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona and Nevada.
On Monday afternoon, Trump agreed to formally begin the transition process after a weeks-long standoff, despite vowing to continue fighting to overturn the election results and declaring "we will prevail".
With the move widely viewed as a concession, he later insisted that he conceded "nothing".
"What does General Services Administration being allowed to preliminarily work with the Democrats have to do with continuing to pursue our various cases on what will go down as the most corrupt election in American political history?" he tweeted.
"We are moving full speed ahead. Will never concede to fake ballots and 'Dominion'."
The Trump campaign claims it still has a path to victory, either through the US Supreme Court or by convincing state legislatures to override the popular vote and appoint their own electors.
The electoral college meets in each state on December 14 to formally vote on the winner.