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Franklin Graham urges Trump to meet with Biden at White House for 'healing and preparation'

Prominent preacher and evangelist Franklin Graham has urged US President Donald Trump to meet with President-elect Biden as a new administration prepares to take over the White House.

Graham posted to Facebook the day after President Trump committed to a "smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power".

While he stopped short of congratulating Biden on his victory, Trump did appear to accept defeat, stating that "a new administration will be inaugurated on January 20".

Graham advised that, in light of the President's remarks, it would be wise for Trump to invite the President-elect and Vice President-elect to the White House for a meeting.

"Thank you President Donald J. Trump for your conciliatory words to the nation last night," the preacher wrote. "I hope you will quickly invite President-elect Joe Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, and their spouses to the White House for a meeting to begin the healing and preparation for a smooth transition. We are praying for you, Vice President Mike Pence, President-elect Biden, Vice President-elect Harris, and our other leaders in Washington." 

Last week, just prior to being suspended from Twitter, Trump confirmed that he would not be attending Biden's inauguration ceremony, slated for 20th January. 

Over the weekend, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi called on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment and declare President Trump unfit for office. If Pence refuses, the House will hold a vote to impeach Trump - lawmakers have accused the president of being the chief instigator of violent riots at the US Capitol which resulted in the death of a police officer. 

"We will act with urgency, because this President represents an imminent threat,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to colleagues. "The horror of the ongoing assault on our democracy perpetrated by this President is intensified and so is the immediate need for action." 

With President Trump unable to post on Twitter, on Monday, First Lady Melania Trump issued a statement in which she urged the nation to "heal in a civil manner".

The First Lady said she was "disappointed and disheartened" by the Capitol protests, but also condemned what she called "salacious gossip, unwarranted personal attacks, and false misleading accusations" surrounding the events. 

"This time is solely about healing our country and its citizens," she added. "It should not be used for personal gain." 

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