Large numbers of people, including an Argyle man and his family, rallied last weekend in Washington, D.C., in support of President Donald Trump.
Trump has actively stoked doubts about the integrity of states' electoral systems, and this week, he continued legal or political attempts to block President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the Nov. 3 election.
"We were there mainly to pray," Paul Neuner said of the trip he, his family — including five children, elementary through high school-age — another family, his mother-in-law and friends took to D.C.
Neuner said his family drove both ways, while everyone else took flights, and he's never participated in a rally before, such as a similar pro-Trump rally in Jefferson City earlier this month.
"What made us go is love of nation and love of country," he said.
He said the vibe at the events in D.C. was "people absolutely believed that the election was stolen," and it was a mobilization of politically-conservative people from across the country.
"If he didn't win, he didn't win. But you have to have confidence in the process," he said then added though people like him aren't looking to start trouble, he doesn't have that faith in the voting system.
Because of that, recounts are not enough for him; he wants an audit, with sworn statements and a look at things including software systems and mail-in ballots.
In coverage of the D.C. rally, the Associated Press wrote, "The issues that Trump's campaign and its allies have pointed to are typical in every election: problems with signatures, secrecy envelopes and postal marks on mail-in ballots, as well as the potential for a small number of ballots miscast or lost. With Biden leading Trump by wide margins in key battleground states, none of those issues would have any impact on the outcome of the election."
For Neuner, anti-abortion policies, gun rights and other constitutionally-protected civil liberties are at stake, he said. "I think it's right for people to have confidence the election was done fairly," and a lot of people don't.
Nationwide, more than 73.7 million people voted for Trump, and more than 79.7 million voted for Biden.
Trump won Missouri with 56.826 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results from the secretary of state's office.
Trump solidified his support in the state and in Cole County, but he did not drastically increase it since his election in 2016; winning 56.772 percent of the vote statewide in 2016, and increasing his support in the county by less than half a percent to 65.79 percent this year.
In Missouri, the secretary of state's office notes on its website there are 116 election jurisdictions, "each with their own voting system. That means there is no single voting system or single point of access."
The secretary of state also assured:
"Voting machines are not connected to the internet, so they can't be hacked from the internet."
"Every single voting machine in Missouri is required to produce a paper audit trail."
"When absentee ballots are processed, they are counted by a bipartisan team."
"Voting machines are publicly tested both before and after election day."
"Once checked for accuracy, election equipment is locked and sealed to prohibit any tampering with the equipment on election day."
"All voting machines in Missouri are required to give the voter a second chance to ensure the ballot is marked correctly."
"Election results are audited by local election officials before any results are certified."
For Neuner, going to D.C. was a great experience for him and his family — he was inspired by the energy of the crowds.
He said it's important to be an informed citizen, and his children "will be thoughtful. They will be seekers of information," who won't make emotional decisions.
He also said people should not just accept things the way they are and should understand why they vote the way they do.
He said a lot Trump's post-election lawsuits — despite failing in various states — were designed to be sent to the U.S. Supreme Court, though Neuner added: "I don't want the Supreme Court determining who won or not."
He and his family prayed on the steps of the Supreme Court in D.C. "for grace and mercy on our country," that it would repent, and the Lord would reveal himself to America, he said.
"We prayed for our president" and the election, he said.