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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

After months of a grueling campaign season, some swing voters around Florida are desperately searching for an end to this cycle — even if it means accepting a President Biden win after they voted for President Trump.

Why it matters: Fatigue over the level of political outreach and content they've been inundated with during this race — as well as fear that there will be extreme civil unrest no matter who wins — is pushing these voters to accept a president they don't even want if it means the chaos will end.

  • This was the biggest takeaway from our special post-election Engagious/Schlesinger focus group of 12 Florida voters who supported Barack Obama in 2012 and switched to Donald Trump in 2016.
  • Five of them voted for Biden this time, while the remaining seven stuck with Trump — but only three participants said they think Trump can still win the election.
  • While a focus group is not a statistically significant sample like a poll, the responses show how some voters are thinking and talking about the 2020 election in crucial states.

What they're saying: "If he won then he won," said David S. of Biden, even though he voted for Trump. "I'm not going to hold a grudge or get mad. I'm just going to go to work and go home."

  • His comments reflect a level of acceptance with Biden win that some of the other Trump voters shared.
  • Zac C., who voted Trump, said if Biden is announced as the winner, he'll just "accept it and move on. When you lose, you lose. There's nothing you can do about it since it's already done and over with."

For the few Trump voters who were concerned about fraud changing the outcome, they find solace in a recount, saying it would be easier to accept the result if election officials double-check the work.

  • "If you count things twice, you're more likely to catch a correction," said Curshinda B., who voted to re-elect Trump. She went on to say that some Trump supporters — not Trump himself — would be responsible for his loss.
  • "I believe more of his supporters have kind of sealed his fate," she added. "I don't think he stuck his foot in his mouth. I think his supporters have by bullying people at the polls and those type of things."

Some said that if Trump successfully pursues his litigation in places like Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, and the courts have to step in to help decide the outcome, that's fine, too — even if it goes to the candidate they didn't support.

  • "That reaction is kind of one of the reasons why I am not voting for him," said Charlene C., a Biden voter who dislikes how Trump casts doubt on the legitimacy of the election. "I know that he had a TV show for a very long time and a lot of times, it seems like he's still living in a reality TV world."
  • "I'm just looking for that president who can be more presidential, hopefully unite the country, and not cause chaos and division," said Richard J., who voted for Biden.

By the numbers: Trump is projected to win Florida and its 29 electoral votes with 51% of the vote to Biden's 47%.

Go deeper

Trump's 2024 begins

Trump speaking to reporters in the White House on Thanksgiving. Photo: Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump is likely to announce he'll run again in 2024, perhaps before this term even ends, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Trump has already set in motion two important strategies to stay relevant and freeze out other Republican rivals. 

Georgia election official to Trump: Condemn “potential acts of violence”

Gabriel Sterling. Photo: Jessica McGowan via Getty

Gabriel Sterling, Georgia’s voting implementation manager, called on President Trump and the state's Republican senators to denounce threats against election workers in a press conference on Tuesday.

Why it matters: State election workers have been the recipients of death threats after conspiracy theorists shared false videos about the election results on social media. Trump and his allies continue to claim widespread election fraud took place in the state.

Updated Dec 1, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Barr says DOJ has not seen evidence of fraud that would change election results

Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Attorney General Bill Barr told AP on Tuesday that the Department of Justice has not uncovered evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

Why it matters: It's a direct repudiation of President Trump's baseless claims of a "rigged" election from one of the most loyal members of his Cabinet.

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