Trump, who now claims fraud, got more votes in Detroit than most Republicans

Donald Trump blasted Detroit and Philadelphia on Thursday as 'two of the most politically corrupt places in our country -- easily." (Shutterstock)

Donald Trump may have alleged election fraud in Detroit, but he received more votes for president than any other Republican in years in the city.

In a speech Thursday from the White House that claimed wholesale fraud nationwide in his election against Democrat Joe Biden, Trump blasted Detroit and Philadelphia as “two of the most politically corrupt places in our country — easily.”

“I wouldn’t say Detroit has the best reputation for election integrity,” Trump said.


Trump made the claims, without citing evidence, days after he significantly improved his performance in Detroit from 2016, while Biden did worse in the city than previous Democrats. 

In Tuesday’s election, exit polls nationwide showed African-American voters backed Joe Biden with 87 percent of their vote

In Detroit, which is 79 percent African American, Biden got 94 percent.

That’s less than Hillary Clinton got in 2016 and less than Barack Obama got in 2008 and 2012. Clinton won by 235,000 votes in Detroit while Biden won by 234,000.

In fact, Trump got 12,654 votes on Tuesday — 5,000 more votes in Detroit than he got in 2016 and far better than Republicans John McCain (8,881 in 2008) and Mitt Romney (who was born in Detroit and received 6,019 votes in 2012) back when the city had tens of thousands more residents and voters. 

Turnout in Detroit this year, unlike elsewhere in the state where it rose 15 percent, was only up less than 1 percent but still below 50 percent of the more than 504,000 registered voters in the city.

“It sounds like [Trump is] grasping at straws,” said state Rep. Sherry Gay-Dagnogo, D-Detroit, who won a seat Tuesday night on the Detroit Public Schools board of education.

Gay-Dagnogo praised Detroit’s clerk for her handling of an election that resulted in record turnout due in part to high numbers of absentee ballots. She also said the number of Republican poll challengers made the process more complicated, as the volunteers tabulating ballots had to do their work amid social distancing and an extended timeframe caused by the sheer number of ballots. 

“This is typical Trump,” she said. “He’s seeking attention. He’s seeking to try and create a problem where there really isn’t one.”

But Detroit has had well-known election problems. In 2016, more than one-third of all Detroit precincts registered more votes than they should have, according to county records.

The review found that 248 of the city’s 662 precincts had irregularities and the news prompted a state audit. If the vote totals in the machines do not match what poll workers tally, the precinct’s results can not be recounted.

A state audit, done under then Secretary of State Ruth Johnson, a Republican who is now a state senator, found no evidence of fraud. The audit blamed the problems on poor training and mistakes by poll workers.

In one cited instance, the recount discovered just 50 ballots at a precinct where 306 votes were cast. But during the audit, Johnson’s department accounted for all but one of the 306 votes.

Jocelyn Benson, the Democratic secretary of state now, had made training of poll workers a priority, including in Detroit.

Facts matter. Trust matters. Journalism matters.

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Fri, 11/06/2020 - 3:08am

Trump lost 241,026 votes to covid. He should have tried to protect them.

Fri, 11/06/2020 - 7:59am

There was definitely voter fraud. - and yes there IS evidence. GOP poll inspectors not allowed into Cobo, intimidation tactics, visual evidence showing vehicles with out of state plates delivering boxes of ballots a 3am. The list goes on...

What really angers me is that voting integrity in America is now no better than a third world country. I've been hearing from family/friends oversees asking what is going on (they know more about American politics then most people here). Based on what has/is transpiring they all believe the American Dream is dying if not dead.

On a more local note, I extremely disappointed in Bridge Magazine. At one time this was a non-partisan publication; however that is no longer the case. I say good-bye and will no longer be donating to you.

Fri, 11/13/2020 - 1:38am

In 2016 my wife volunteered as a poll challenger in Pontiac. She went with the intent of being gracious and kind. Right off the bat she discovered poll workers instructing people in line to vote the Democrat ticket. She had to call the lawyer responsible for the precinct location to come and stop the behavior. My wife was not treated well for just doing he job.

Fri, 11/06/2020 - 8:11am

Oh the irony!

Fri, 11/06/2020 - 8:50am

Trumpism to English Translation: "Every vote not cast for me is fraud."

Fri, 11/06/2020 - 9:30am

Of course there was voting fraud in Detroit and elsewhere in Michigan. Anybody that denies that must have blinders on.

George Hagenauer
Fri, 11/06/2020 - 9:33am

The comments by Republican outsiders about Detroit election workers seem to reflect the fact that they believe there are no black Republicans in spite of the fact that there were Republican challengers for a wide range of positions in Detroit wards. With the high pay rate Detroit was offering for people to count there should have been enough Republicans to fill poll slots as well as challenger positions . The problem here seems to not be fraud but Republican party ineptness due to a lack of interest in mobilizing their own people in Detroit.

Fri, 11/06/2020 - 9:42am

I wrote Trump a goodbye letter. I let him know what a traitor and a puppet of Putin he is. I let him know that the American people know the reasons he didn't show his tax returns (like he said he would "after the audit was over") was because it would show how much of a security risk he is due to being indebted to foreign powers. I let him know how corrupt and unprofessional it was to surround himself with criminals and completely unqualified family members in positions of power in the white house. (I reminded him that only dictators do such things and that Kushner and Don Jr. would be fortunate to be working minimum wage jobs had they not been born with a silver spoon in their mouths.) I let him know how irresponsible it was not to completely and forcefully condemn white supremacism and white supremacist groups - even though it would likely cost him votes.  I let him know that, while it isn't entirely his fault, he is most to blame for the complete downfall and disgrace of the republican party and the fact that the party will never fully recover until everyone who did not speak up against Trump is voted out. Lastly, I told him I'd be sure to write to him when he's rotting in prison. 

Sun, 11/08/2020 - 2:12am

Hi. I live in Michigan. I thought we were American's. But Russia is here in Michigan. Hitler is our governor.

Herd Mentality
Mon, 11/09/2020 - 11:03pm

Uhh Jody,

The Russian you are looking for is either Lenin, Trotsky or Stalin.

Hitler was from Germany.

Are you sure you live in MI?

Geoffrey Owen
Tue, 11/10/2020 - 1:52pm

Again, this seems well researched but poorly written. This comes across like notes on a napkin.

Tue, 11/10/2020 - 3:00pm

Wish those dasterly vote counters while fraudulently counting votes for Biden would have included enough Democrats to displace enough Republicans to give the Democrates a clear majority. Maybe with the recount!

Wed, 12/02/2020 - 12:07pm

That's the way election fraud works when you have a popular candidate from whom you wish to steal an election.