Mayor Mike Duggan on Wednesday accused President Trump’s allies in Michigan’s most populous county of racism after they threatened to block certification of the election over slight discrepancies in majority-Black precincts — while ignoring similar problems in heavily white areas.
On Tuesday night, Republican election board members in Wayne County, which contains Detroit and its inner suburbs, refused to certify the county’s election results in a nakedly partisan effort to hold up President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory over Mr. Trump — only to reverse themselves after outcry from state officials and Detroit residents who accused them of trying to steal their votes and criticized the move as racist.
“You could see the racism in the behavior last night,” Mr. Duggan said at a news conference Wednesday. “American democracy cracked last night, but it didn’t break. But we are seeing a real threat to everything we believe in.”
Rev. Wendell Anthony, the head of Detroit’s NAACP chapter, said the Trump campaign’s attempts to discredit the election in cities with large Black populations like Detroit, Philadelphia and Atlanta is part of a racist pattern intended to stoke divisions and undermine core democratic institutions.