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Biden claims "clear victory" as Arizona awaits the ultimate vote – AZ Large Media

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Amid festivities on the one hand and vows to keep fighting on the other, Arizona waited for the final vote on Sunday, even as President-elect Joe Biden called for a "clear victory, a convincing victory" and plans for the next forged four years.

Biden and Kamala Harris, who made history as the first woman and the first black woman to be elected vice president, held a boisterous drive-up victory party on Saturday night in Wilmington, Delaware, at which both promised all Americans regardless of theirs Party to represent in the years ahead.

"The refusal of Democrats and Republicans to cooperate with each other is not a mysterious force beyond our control. It's a decision. A decision we make," said Biden. "And if we can choose not to work together, we can choose to work together. "

But election results across the country, and so far in Arizona, have shown how evenly the nation is divided – and that division remained evident five days after 2020 election day.

"Yesterday and today I felt peace for the first time," said Biden supporter Alejandra Gomez from Phoenix on Sunday.

Gomez is the co-executive director of the Arizona organization LUCHA, an advocacy group for Hispanics and other people of color. She said she was ready to work with a new government "to build this multicultural democracy that is so necessary and that we saw in these historic elections".

The President of the Navajo Nation, Jonathan Nez, said he too hoped to see more people of color, and especially Indians, in the future, to have a seat at the table. In an interview with Cronkite News, Nez said he would like to see a tribal leader appointed to the Biden transition team.

COVID-19 has hit the Indian country particularly hard, and Nez believes Native American leaders could use what they have learned to lead the nation through the crisis.

"I think Navajo could provide some insight into how the United States is dealing with this pandemic," said Nez.

At the other end of the spectrum, Trump supporter Lloyd Rathburn had a two-word answer to the presidential election result: "Not happy."

"We Republicans mourn," he said. “We had hope with President Trump. And now: where is our hope? "

Under Trump, the 63-year-old bartender said, “My supplies have … gone through the roof. I'm about to retire, everything looks good. But now I don't know what to expect. "

Trump did not concede, and he and his allies continued to press for unproven allegations of potential election fraud. In addition to lawsuits in states like Pennsylvania and Nevada, they are also questioning the number of votes in Arizona.

A lawsuit filed on Saturday by Trump, the Republican National Committee, and the Republican Party of Arizona alleges Maricopa County, the largest personally rejected, falsely rejected vote in the state.

The complaint alleges that in cases where voters inadvertently marked their ballots for more than one candidate in the same race, in what is known as "outvoting", their final decisions have not been corrected but rather ignored.

Sophia Solis, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, said the office is still looking into the lawsuit but it does not appear to have any value.

Megan Gilbertson, communications director for the Maricopa County's electoral department, said the agency was unable to comment on any pending litigation.

Election workers across the state were still working their way through some 99,000 outstanding ballots, including about 43,000 in Maricopa County, and the count could take a few days.

"Staff are also still working on mismatched signatures and have contacted voters," Gilbertson said in an email when there were questions. Voters who have not presented the correct ID to vote or whose signatures are in question have until 5 p.m. Tuesday to remedy the situation.

As of Sunday afternoon, Biden led Trump nationwide with around 19,000 votes. At the national level, however, Biden was declared the expected winner by the media based on analysis of the votes counted.

In the past few days, numerous Trump supporters have gathered outside the Maricopa County's tabulation and voting center in Phoenix to protest the process. Others demonstrated in front of the State Capitol over the weekend.

Joaquin Enriquez, a spokesman for the Maricopa County Sheriff & # 39; s Office, said there had been no quotes or arrests.

"There was some tension at times, but we were able to … dispel those situations," he said. “Everyone has to remember that everyone has the right to be there, they have the right to express their speech. However, everything must be done with respect and in accordance with the law. "

With COVID-19 cases rising in Arizona and the US, several supporters of Biden and Trump said they wanted to stay away from personal celebrations or protests.

"I celebrate physically aloof from loved ones because I want to protect our family and community," said Gomez.

"It's good enough for me to see it on TV," added Adina Werner von Surprise.

Werner voted for Trump and admitted that he was disappointed with the result, but said she had seen parts of Biden's speech and was trying to be optimistic about the future.

"We're a little nervous about the direction he's planning," she said. "But … we've been through a lot of presidents who are good, some who are not that good, and we always manage to come out on the other end."

And if not, in four more years she added, "We have the option to change this if we don't like the process."

"Know Trump," she said, "he's going to fight … until there's no fight left. I think we'll be looking at it for the next week. But as far as our individual lives go, we just keep going to work and keep doing our thing and see what happens. "

Madison Cerro and Kyla Pearce Story, Cronkite News

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