78% of Republicans who alleged unfairness said mail-in ballots spurred fraud, while 72% believed ballot tampering occurred

A supporter of Donald Trump holds a sign during a rally in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
A supporter of Donald Trump holds a sign during a rally in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Photograph: Bastiaan Slabbers/Reuters

According to a new survey, 70% of Republicans do not believe the presidential election was “free and fair”, even though multiple news outlets have called it for Joe Biden.

There has been a dramatic decline in Republican voters’ faith in the system. Before the election, in the same Politico/Morning Consult poll, 35% of Republicans thought the vote would not be free and fair.

More Democrats voiced trust in the election, 90% saying they thought the results were “free and fair”, up 52% from the pre-election poll.

Among Republicans who thought the election wasn’t fair, 78% thought mail-in ballots spurred extensive voter fraud, while 72% believed ballot tampering occurred.

Donald Trump and his supporters continue to allege such problems, without offering any substantiating evidence whatsoever.

On Monday the attorney general, William Barr, authorized federal prosecutors to investigate “substantial allegations” of voter irregularities, a decision which marked a sharp turn from Department of Justice policy and was made without citing any evidence of voter fraud.

The White House press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, reiterated Trump’s refusal to concede and repeated accusations of voter fraud. Fox News, which has historically treated Trump more charitably, cut away from her press conference.

Among Republican voters surveyed by Politico and Morning Consult, 84% said the election helped Biden. Before election day, 18% of Republicans said they thought results would be unreliable. Now, that number has surged to 64%. Among Democrats, 86% said they trusted the results.

Republicans thought results in swing states were especially questionable, particularly in Pennsylvania, which counted ballots for four days before Biden won it. Republican-to-Democrat distrust in Pennsylvania’s results was 62% to 8%.

GOP voters voiced similar distrust in Wisconsin, Nevada, Georgia and Arizona. But Republicans were divided on whether the winner would change under Trump’s legal onslaught. Of such voters, 38% said they thought results would be reversed and 45% did not.

The poll, carried out between 6 November and 9 November, surveyed 1,987 registered voters and had a 2% margin of error. The majority of calls were conducted after news outlets called the race for Biden.

Several weeks ago, a Yahoo! News poll conducted by YouGov found that half of Trump supporters believed in QAnon, the false conspiracy theory that a group of Satan-worshipping Democrats, billionaires and celebrities control the world while carrying out pedophilia and human trafficking.

QAnon’s followers also believe that these people harvest a purportedly life-extending substance from the blood of exploited children.