LANSING, Mich. (CBSMiami/AP) — As Michigan’s attorney general asked the state Supreme Court to block a potential recount of the state’s presidential vote, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said he doesn’t expect his state’s recount to significantly change the results.
Attorney General Bill Schuette, like the Trump campaign, argued that Green Party candidate Jill Stein cannot seek the “frivolous” recount in Michigan because she was not “aggrieved” to the point at which a potential miscounting of votes could have cost her the election. She garnered 1 percent of the state’s vote.
The filing delayed the start of a state election board meeting to consider Trump’s request to block the hand recount of all 4.8 million ballots cast in Michigan. Trump defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton in Michigan by 10,700 votes. The earliest a Michigan recount could start would be next week.
A recount is already underway in Wisconsin. Stein also wants a court-ordered statewide recount in Pennsylvania.
Gov. Walker said Friday he doesn’t believe it’ll go anywhere.
“Anytime there’s a canvass or a recount, there’s slight adjustments, but I don’t think you’re going to see a significant adjustment,” the Republican governor said.
Walker also said he’s open to changing the state’s election laws to prevent minor candidates from being allowed to request recounts. Stein finished a distant fourth in Wisconsin with a little more than 1 percent of the vote.
Trump won Wisconsin by about 22,000 votes, or less than 1 percentage point, over Clinton. Stein requested the recount which began on Thursday and had to be done by Dec. 13.
Michigan’s elections board on Friday was to consider Trump’s request to block a hand recount of all 4.8 million ballots cast in the state he won by about 10,700 votes over Clinton.
In Michigan, lawyers for the Trump campaign argued Thursday that Stein, a “bottom-dwelling candidate,” cannot seek the expensive, time-consuming recount because she was not “aggrieved” to the point where potential miscounting of votes could have cost her the election. She garnered just 1 percent in Michigan.
They also said in their objection that Stein waited until the last minute to file her recount petition Wednesday, making it impossible to finish by a Dec. 13 deadline.
Stein countered that Trump’s “cynical efforts to delay the recount and create unnecessary costs for taxpayers are shameful and outrageous.” His objections suspended the planned Friday start of the recount until next week.
The first reporting of recount results was expected Friday in Wisconsin. In Pennsylvania, a hearing was scheduled for Monday on Stein’s push to secure a court-ordered statewide recount, a legal maneuver that has never been tried, according to one of the attorneys who filed it.
Recounts were not expected to flip nearly enough votes to change the outcome in any of the states.
The Wisconsin recount doesn’t carry nearly the same drama as the Florida recount in 2000, when the outcome of the presidential race between Al Gore and George W. Bush hung in the balance. Even so, the campaigns for Trump, Clinton and Stein all had observers spread throughout the state to watch the process.
The recount will have to move quickly. The federal deadline to certify the vote to avoid having the fate of Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes decided by Congress is Dec. 13. Even if that were to happen, the votes would almost certainly go to Trump, since Republicans control both chambers of Congress.
Stein has argued, without evidence, that irregularities in the votes in all three states suggest that there could have been tampering with the vote, perhaps through a well-coordinated, highly complex cyberattack.
Stein’s critics contend that she is a little-known candidate who is merely trying to raise her profile while raising millions of dollars.
The Wisconsin recount was estimated to cost about $3.9 million. Stein paid $973,250 for the requested recount in Michigan. Michigan’s Republican secretary of state, Ruth Johnson, has said a recount could cost $5 million total.
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