Hundreds of people turned out at the state capitol in Madison Saturday to celebrate — and some to protest — the election of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr..
While the day was mostly peaceful, the two groups clashed with each other a few times throughout the afternoon as multiple screaming matches broke out. Many people in both crowds also weren’t wearing masks despite Wisconsin’s recent surge in COVID-19 cases.
“The last four years are finally over,” a speaker on the megaphone said to the crowd. “We have a lot of work to do, but we can finally put [Trump’s] presidency behind us and move forward.”
Madison was a big reason Biden flipped Wisconsin blue and won the state’s 10 electoral votes, turning out more votes for Democrats compared to 2016 than any other city in the state.
“Congratulations to President-elect Biden, he won this election fair and square, demonstrating refreshing dignity, composure and confidence as he awaited the verdict of the people.” Madison mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway tweeted Saturday afternoon. “Thank you to everyone who voted. Thank you to everyone, especially those here in Madison, who made this a safe, secure and healthy election for voters.”
On the south side of the building, a group of Trump supporters gathered with signs saying “Stop the Sham” and “Illegal ballots = Dems steal election” to protest the decision.
Chants of “Stop the Steal” and “Four more years” rang out for most of the afternoon.
While there is no evidence of illegal ballots being cast in Wisconsin, or of any other election day sabotage, Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has already called for an investigation into how the election was administered. Yet non-partisan state officials said it would be “insulting” to call Tuesday’s election process in Wisconsin “anything but a success.”
“I just want a thorough investigation of the facts,” a Trump supporter who declined to give his name said to Biden supporters. “If the investigations occur, and Biden wins — good for it. I support it.”
President Trump has made frequent false or misleading claims of election fraud on Twitter and filed lawsuits in multiple states — many of which have been declined by judges — in an attempt to recount the final results of the election.
“I WON THIS ELECTION, BY A LOT!” Trump falsely claimed on Twitter Wednesday morning, just hours before the Associated Press called the race for Biden.
Trump has already stated that he will take the result of the election to court.
“This election is not over. The false projection of Joe Biden as the winner is based on results in four states that are far from final,” Trump said in a statement. “Once the election is final, [I] will be re-elected.”