New York, Nov 4 (efe-epa).- Amid very tight election results, President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign on Wednesday afternoon decided to “immediately” demand a vote recount in the state of Wisconsin but to do that it is estimated that it would have to pay some $3 million, and so the president has begun asking for donations from his supporters.
“Despite ridiculous public polling used as a voter suppression tactic, Wisconsin has been a razor thin race as we always knew that it would be,” Trump campaign chair Bill Stepien wrote in a statement sent to the press. “There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results. The President is well within the threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so.”
The latest election figures, with almost all the votes counted, give the president 48.8 percent of the votes to 49.4 percent for his rival, Democrat Joe Biden.
In Wisconsin, state law says that a candidate may request a recount if after the state’s 72 electoral districts have presented their tallies the percentage of the total votes statewide separating the candidates is less than 1 percent, but to do that the candidate making the request must pay for each vote that needs to be reviewed.
However, there is an exception. The candidate does not have to provide the funds if the margin is less than 0.25 percent, but if that is not the case in this situation, then the president would need to pay some $3 million, according to calculations by local media.
Wisconsin law also establishes that if the recount changes the election results and gives Trump the win in the state, the state would reimburse the money to the candidate.
To try and finance these legal efforts, which must be paid for in advance, the Trump campaign has repeatedly been asking his supporters for donations via e-mails throughout Tuesday night and during the day on Wednesday.
“Just like I predicted from the start,” Trump claimed in one of these fundraising e-mails sent out on Wednesday morning, “mail-in ballots are leading to CHAOS like you’ve never seen, plain and simple! The Radical Left is going to do whatever it takes to try and rip a TRUMP-PENCE VICTORY away from you, and that’s why I’m coming to you now.”
In other emails, he said that he needed his supporters’ help to ensure that the election results are protected and so that “leftist(s)” do not undermine the election.
If Trump’s campaign ultimately presents its complaint, he has until 5 pm on the day after the 72 electoral districts present their results to do so, and if the recount order is made, a period of 13 days is allocated for pollworkers and officials to review the ballots.
After that, if Trump’s or Biden’s team fails to accept the result of the recount, they would have five days to file a complaint in court, which would then have to rule on the matter as quickly as possible.
Once that ruling is issued, the candidate who felt slighted would have another 30 days to appeal, which would be a process that could last weeks.
Wisconsin law provides that a matter of this kind would have to be given priority before any other similar case, with the state being one of those which has experience very tight races in recent years.
In 2011, during the election for state Supreme Court justices, JoAnne Kloppenburg initially defeated then Justice David Prosser by some 200 votes before a recount reversed the results.
In the 2016 presidential vote, a recount requested by a third candidate, Jill Stein, did not alter the results in favor of Democrat Hillary Clinton, and Trump received 131 votes more after the review.
Besides Wisconsin, the Trump campaign has announced that it will present complaints in several states to stop the vote count, a move that could lead to more legal expenses.