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'This is what democracy looks like': Detroiters cheer Biden win

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

Labor and community groups and Metro Detroit residents gathered in Detroit's New Center on Saturday afternoon to cheer Joe Biden's election to the presidency.

Union activist Nia Winston, president of hospitality workers' union UNITE HERE Local 24, told the crowd at West Grand Boulevard and Second that Biden's win is an example of what happens when people work together and vote.

"This is what democracy looks like," said Winston, a Farmington Hills resident, her young daughter standing by her side. "We were not defeated. We defended our democracy with our votes. Our voices were heard."

Jessica Cummings of Madison Heights was among those who got into the spirit of the Biden win. Cummings carried a yellow sign that read "Ya Fired Donald". 

Tinu Roland of Detroit marches during the Protect the Vote rally and march in Detroit on Nov. 7, 2020.

"I'm very excited," said Cummings, enjoying the enthusiasm of the rally crowd. "My anxiety was really high. Joe Biden has got a lot of work to do but I'm still excited."

For Dana Paglia, a St. Clair Shores resident, Saturday's news that Biden and Kamala Harris had won allowed her to breathe a sigh of relief. Like Cummings, Paglia feels Biden faces a daunting task of bringing Democrats and Republicans together.

"There is a lot of work to be done but I think it's a start."

Ernest Sanford Jr., beamed along with the blue skies as he waved signs which read "Voters Decided" and "The People Have Spoken."

"I feel great," said Sanford. "We need Joe Biden to be president."

Michael Wallace

Sanford Jr. said one of the first things Biden needs to tackle is getting the COVID-19 virus under control and eradicated.

After the news broke Saturday morning that Biden had secured the necessary 270 Electoral College votes, Michael Wallace of Detroit said it will be a challenge to bring the nation together but he believes Biden can do it.

 "Go Joe! Go Joe!" Wallace said. 

Neariyah Izraayl

Neariyah Izraayl said he believed all along Biden that would pull it off. Now he says Biden has to build the trust of those who didn't vote for him.

His wife, Makeeta Izraayl, said she felt good about Biden's win and was confident he would succeed. "He's going to do what he said he would," she said.