His decision to discredit the election results before the ballots are fully counted in several battleground states shattered yet another norm in American politics as he closes out his first — and perhaps only — term in office. But given the months Trump spent demeaning the electoral system, it was an unsurprising move.

“He’s not going to go gently into the night,” said presidential historian Douglas Brinkley. “Trump will look for ways to contest it because for him everything is at stake in this election. He goes from being the most powerful person in the world to being an outlaw figure.”…

Trump’s allies on Tuesday night had urged him to go on the offensive, get on TV and frame the debate on his terms in the coming days, according to two Republicans.

They want him to deliver speeches or headline rallies so he can declare he’s on the path to winning the presidency, hindered only by inaccurate projections and fraudulent mail-in ballots. Trump supporters were particularly upset that the networks took so long to declare Trump the winner in Florida. Later, Trump’s allies lashed out when Fox News called Arizona for Biden, well ahead of other networks that made the same call hours later.