PHOENIX – More than 150 supporters of President Trump, some of them armed, gathered outside the Maricopa County elections office on Wednesday and chanted “Count the votes,” as officials do it under the protection of the sheriff’s delegates.
Early results in Arizona showed Joseph R. Biden Jr. lead the way, but Trump supporters believe that could change once the votes are finally counted.
Keely Varvel, deputy head of recording for Maricopa County, said the tally would continue despite the objections. Ms. Varvel said: “We are still planning to finish our scheduled ballot processing and report further results tonight.
Without giving any evidence, some Republicans have accused election officials of manipulating the results to show that Mr Trump is losing out in Maricopa County, home to about 60% of Arizona’s population.
Jim Williams, 67, a welder attending the rally, said: “The only way Biden can win against Arizona is through fraud. “I won’t accept a victory in Biden. I don’t want to live under the Communist regime ”.
Many in the crowd held Trump flags, and many held AR-15 rifles and other handguns. Some also chanted “Fox News is bad,” reflecting their dissatisfaction with the network’s decision on Tuesday to call Arizona for Mr. Biden, a move that several other news outlets later followed. .
The last time a Democratic presidential candidate won in Arizona was Bill Clinton in 1996, and Maricopa County has not voted for a Democratic candidate for the presidency since 1948. But these Demographic changes have turned Arizona into a battlefield state.
By the end of Wednesday night, Mr. Biden was ahead of Mr. Trump in Arizona with less than 80,000 votes, or less than three percentage points, with about 14 percent of the total remaining votes remaining. In polls so far from Maricopa County, Mr. Biden took the lead with five percentage points.