MAGA march: Trump supporters rally against unproven electoral fraud
Tens of thousands of Donald Trump’s supporters have taken to the streets of Washington DC to show their support for the outgoing commander-in-chief. US officials have dismissed President Trump’s claims of election fraud.
Supporters of outgoing US president Donald Trump marched through Washington DC on Saturday to protest what they believe to be electoral fraud. Trump has repeatedly claimed victory in this month’s election without providing evidence.
President Trump’s motorcade passed by the crowd shortly after the event began. Videos posted on social media showed the incumbent commander-in-chief waving from his car. Later on Saturday, Trump tweeted there was “tremendous evidence” of voter fraud, however, he did not present any evidence.
US security officials dismissed Trump’s claims of a fix, saying last week’s White House vote was “the most secure in American history.” Several state courts have ruled against lawyers representing Trump’s campaign and the Republican Party in cases alleging fraud.
But that didn’t stop some of those in attendance from falsely calling Trump the winner of the election or from sharing conspiracy theories about a movement to bring down the current president.
DW correspondent Stefan Simons said the crowd had swelled to between 10,000 to 15,000 people who came out to support President Trump. Many stood outside the Supreme Court, calling on the judicial body to rule on the election results.
“For them, the election is not over yet,” he said. “They think this election was stolen from them. In four years, there will be payback time, they say.”
Members of the far-right, white-nationalist group “Proud Boys,” designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, were seen mingling with the marchers, as the crowd chanted “Arrest Joe Biden!”
“The deep state is all against Trump,” one protester told DW. “Don’t believe it for a second. There’s tons of voter fraud out there.”
Organizers have given the rallies various names, including the Million MAGA March, the March for Trump and Stop the Steal. MAGA is an acronym for the Trump campaign slogan “Make America Great Again.”
Organizers and right-wing media figures, along with the White House officials, have predicted a huge turnout. While the crowd was modest at the outset, the march gained steam in the hours that followed.
While there were only a handful of brief scuffles between Trump supporters and supporters of President-elect Joe Biden, during the day, some confrontations turned more violent as the night continued.
Police arrested at least 20 people on a variety of charges, including assault and weapons possession, officials said. One stabbing was reported, two police officers were injured and several firearms were also recovered by police.
Many of those taking part in the pro-Trump rally did so without wearing face masks or socially distancing. On Friday, the US announced a high in daily coronavirus cases of 184,000. Over 245,000 people have died in the United States of COVID-19 and more than 10 million people, including Trump, have been infected.
Trump refuses to concede
The US president has so far refused to concede defeat to Joe Biden, who all major US media outlets project to be the winner of the November 3 election.
President-elect Biden, a Democrat, is projected to have won 306 electoral college votes, compared to President Trump’s 232.
Judges in Arizona, Michigan and Pennsylvania on Friday rejected a series of legal challenges by the Trump campaign to seek a review of results in those three states.
Biden’s team have said Trump’s failure to recognize his defeat is hurting national security because the president-elect has not yet received any daily intelligence briefings.
jf,dv/sms (AP, AFP, dpa)