Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA – As thousands of people gather in the United States to celebrate Democrat Joe Biden’s planned victory, some of President Donald Trump’s most staunch supporters insist that the presidential contest is not over.
19-year-old Samuel Battle accused the Democratic Party of attempting to steal the elections, which were among the most controversial in recent times and attracted a record number of voters across the country despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I think it’s not over yet,” said Battle, who was one of a small group of Trump supporters who gathered in downtown Philadelphia across from a much larger, cheering crowd celebrating Biden’s planned victory.
Hours earlier, the Associated Press said Biden is expected to receive 290 votes for the electoral college and finalize his bid for the White House after a time-consuming vote count that is ongoing in some key states.
Philadelphia was key to Biden’s path to victory. AP said earlier Saturday that the former U.S. vice president had won a battlefield state victory.
Trump has expressed doubts about the U.S. electoral process, accusing Democrats of engaging in widespread electoral fraud – an accusation that experts and electoral officials in several states have dismissed as baseless.
19-year-old Samuel Battle believes the Democrats are stealing the US elections and reiterates the claim that President Donald Trump has repeatedly made over the past few days [Hilary Beaumont/Al Jazeera]”The simple fact is that this election is far from over,” the Republican president said in a statement shortly after the AP forecast a Biden win, pointing to the legal challenges his campaigns have presented in several states to dispute the results.
Battle reiterated Trump’s claims, saying he believed the final election result would ultimately be decided in the US Supreme Court.
“We are just waiting for the Supreme Court to rule on this, and if they do, they will rule in Trump’s favor,” he told Al Jazeera, without going into what exactly the court would rule on.
“I don’t buy it”
Another Trump supporter at the Philadelphia rally, Charlie, who did not give Al Jazeera his last name because he said he was employed by a “liberal company,” said he did not think Trump lost the election.
“I don’t care what the media say,” he said. “I’m not buying it and that’s why I’m here today.”
Trump supporters have held rallies in several states, including Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Arizona – key states where ballot counting is still pending [Goran Tomasevic/Reuters]Charlie said he and his wife couldn’t vote because their postal vote wasn’t on time. “We are libertarians, but we wanted to support Trump,” he said. “We wanted to compete with Trump against Biden.”
The president’s supporters have also held rallies in Wisconsin where the Trump campaign has announced it will call for a recount. in Arizona, where some believe the president’s race is too short to be called; and in Georgia, where election officials also say a recount should be ordered.
Several Trump supporters, some of whom carried firearms, also gathered outside the Pennsylvania Capitol, which is still counting the ballots in the highly competitive race.
Two armed men were arrested in Philadelphia earlier this week, local media reported, after police received a lead on an alleged conspiracy to attack a convention center, which tabulated the votes.
A supporter of President Donald Trump calls out during a rally in Phoenix, Arizona [Ross D. Franklin/AP]In New York, 36-year-old Trump supporter Tonye-Dmitria Vickers held up a sign that read “F *** Biden – He Cheated”.
“I’m gay, a former Democrat, Black, a former Navy SEAL, and I have a degree in political science from Howard University,” he told Al Jazeera, saying he supported Trump because “the African American unemployment rate was lowest among him of US history ”.
Another Trump supporter, 48-year-old Dora Ellis, said the president did a lot to support peace in the world. “Biden voted for every single bomb attack and war. He’s a hawk, ”she said.
“Can [Trump] be rude? Yes, he’s not always diplomatic. But is he racist or [a] Xenophobes? Absolutely not.”
Trump supporter Tonye-Dmitria Vickers (36) (right) speaks to Dora Ellis (48), another supporter of the president, in New York City on Saturday [Radmilla Suleymanova/Al Jazeera]The previous Saturday, Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani held a press conference outside of Philadelphia to clarify the campaign’s ongoing litigation. US media made their Biden profit projections just before Giuliani was due to speak.
“It’s not done yet,” said Daren Suter, a Pennsylvania Trump supporter who attended the press conference, to Al Jazeera.
“There must be investigations. There are too many examples of ballot tampering, things like that, especially in Philly. And Trump knew all of this; Trump knew this was going to happen. “
Al Jazeera’s Radmilla Suleymanova contributed to this report from New York City.