TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A bipartisan panel called Monday for top Republicans to reject President Donald Trump's baseless claims of voter fraud, warning that not doing so would impugn America's democratic tradition of a peaceful transition of power between two presidents.

What are the panel's roots?

Dubbed the National Task Force on Election Crises, it is a collective of more than four dozen legal scholars and former government officials who served in Republican and Democratic administrations. Members include former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, former Republican National Committee Chairman and Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, and former FBI General Counsel Jim Baker. The task force was organized during the runup to the 2020 election.

What are examples of GOP positions the panel is taking issue with?

High-level Republicans who aren't acknowledging that President-elect Joe Biden has beaten Trump are contributing to a dangerous narrative, task force members told reporters Monday. In Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis and state Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis have both expressed support for the president's legal challenges of the vote in key swing states, with Patronis recently posting a cartoon on Twitter depicting a Democrat wearing 12 "I Voted" stickers — a reference to Trump's fraud allegations.

“Like a lot of Americans on social media the CFO enjoys the creativity of the internet," the state's Deputy Chief Financial Officer Frank Collins III said in an emailed statement. "The CFO is aware that a lot of twitter trolls, or specifically Democratic operatives, didn’t like the post because Florida went solidly for President Trump and Republicans which is very good news for the future of the Sunshine State. For other states that are currently dealing with questions of election fraud these issues will, and should be, handled in the court system."

What are the risks of such positions, according to the task force?

At a time when voters have sent a message that compromise, rather than further divisiveness, should be the order of the day, Vanita Gupta — a task force member and the CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights — says Republican endorsements of the president's attacks on the voting process are particularly inflammatory. "It does lead to further polarization, less compromise," Gupta said. "It can make it more difficult in the future to share and have buy-in on a common agenda that's going to benefit all Americans, and in this moment of a global pandemic, that could actually risk American lives, and that is a dangerous place for us to be in."

What concerns does the panel have about the mechanics of the presidential transition process?

The longer a concession is delayed, task force members say, the more difficult it will be for Biden to prepare the thousands of appointments he'll be tasked with making after taking office January 20. They took particular issue with the refusal of a Government Services Administration official to sign the customary paperwork required to release almost $10 million to the Biden transition team for its work over the next two months.

How are Republicans justifying their refusal to pressure the president to concede?

To a strikingly similar degree, top elected Republicans across the country have defended the president's position, saying he has "every right" to pursue legal challenges of vote counts in swing states. Some point to a possible Supreme Court review of the validity of late-arriving mail-in ballots as a potential game-changer.