Trump says Giuliani 'doing well' fighting COVID-19, continues to contest election

He again compared the U.S. election to that of "a Third World country."

"Rudy is doing well. I just spoke to him. He’s doing very well. No temperature. And he actually called me early this morning. He was the first call I got," Trump said, speaking to reporters in a packed Oval Office at a ceremony presenting the presidential Medal of Freedom to wrestling legend Dan Gable where few, if any, attendees wore masks.

"He's another champion, greatest mayor in the history of New York and what he's doing now is more important," Trump continued. "And he will admit that. He was the greatest mayor, did a fantastic job especially when you see what's going on nowadays, Dan. Rudy Giuliani was a great, great mayor. And what he's doing now, and he will say it, is even more important."

Several Republican politicians were in attendance, including Republican Iowa Sens. Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley, just recovered from COVID-19 as well as Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, a former wrestler himself who has been accused of turning a blind eye to allegations of widespread sexual abuse while he was an assistant wrestling coach at The Ohio State University. Jordan has denied knowing about any sexual abuse of athletes.

Asked directly if he's looking to change the outcome of the election or try to make a case to the American people that it was fixed, Trump repeated his baseless claims.

"It was a rigged election. It's a disgrace to our country. It's like a Third World country," Trump said. "I think the case has been made, and now we find out what we can do about it. You'll see a lot of big things happening the next couple days."

Reporters also audibly asked general questions about the inauguration and the fate of Attorney General William Barr amid Trump and Barr's conflicting stances on the integrity of 2020 election -- but Trump just walked out without answering.

The remarks come as Georgia's secretary of state was set to recertify the vote for Biden after a third count of the presidential vote -- requested by the Trump campaign -- maintained Biden won the state by nearly 12,000 votes.

Over the weekend the president held a rally in Georgia to campaign for the upcoming Senate runoffs there -- races which will determine the balance of power in Congress’ upper chamber -- but instead of stumping for the incumbents Trump predominately spent his 101 minutes on stage pushing a whirlwind of unsubstantiated claims that the election was stolen.

Though Trump has asked GOP lawmakers in key states like Georgia to subvert the will of their voters and find a way to appoint pro-Trump electors to the Electoral College, officials have largely rejected those calls, telling Trump his only viable path would be through the courts where pro-Trump efforts have ended in at least 38 defeats to date.

Trump is also running up against Tuesday's "safe harbor" deadline, the day that Congress mandates election results be considered conclusive, ahead of Electoral College electors meeting on Dec. 14.