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After Election, Cautious Optimism That Few False Narratives Took Hold

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The processing of ballots from Maricopa County continued on Wednesday in Phoenix.

Leaders of nonpartisan government accountability group Common Cause said the election had gone more smoothly than many had feared, despite “small administrative issues” in some polling stations that were being framed online as evidence of cons

Credit: Alisha Jucevic/The New York Times

On the morning of Election Day, Charlie Kirk, the conservative talk show host from Arizona, shared a video on Twitter about broken voting machines in Maricopa County, followed by a series of posts suggesting that the problems were intentional.

"This is manufactured chaos," he wrote, calling for those responsible to be arrested.

The video was shared nearly 20,000 times and liked by more than 30,000 users, including many prominent accounts with hundreds of thousands of followers. The post and others like it on a dozen online platforms kindled a false narrative of widespread voting shenanigans among those predisposed to believe that the country's elections are rigged.

And yet as Election Day unfolded, that narrative's momentum seemed to wane.

From The New York Times
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