Jill Stein’s Fund For Election Recount Nears $7 Million
Green Party candidate Jill Stein has been pushing for a vote recount in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. So far, she has already raised $6.3 million to cover for the cost of the recounts. This fund is almost twice as much as the fund she raised for her presidential bid.
Stein filed for a petition to begin a recount after citing statistical anomalies and the possibility of the machines being hacked. But with a race against federal deadline on Dec. 13, Stein must first pay in full the cost before the recount can start.
Although the recount gives no assurance of reversing the results of the election, Hillary Clinton's campaign backed Stein's request for the statewide recount in Wisconsin to ensure fairness.
Clinton's attorney, Marc Elias, noted that they did not plan to contest the results because they see "no actionable evidence of hacking or outside attempts to alter the voting technology." But since a recount has been initiated, he said that they intend to participate.
President-elect Donald Trump, on the other hand, slammed the effort and called Stein's move ridiculous.
"The Green Party scam to fill up their coffers by asking for impossible recounts is now being joined by the badly defeated & demoralized Dems," he tweeted.
He followed this up by saying, "The Democrats, when they incorrectly thought they were going to win, asked that the election night tabulation be accepted. Not so anymore!"
In an interview with NPR, Stein admitted that the recount is not likely to change the outcome.
They are not expecting the outcome to change here. But it's the voters who benefit by standing up and saying we deserve a voting system that is secure in which we know our votes are being counted and our votes are being respected," she said.
If the fund raised will exceed the cost of the recount, Stein's campaign will allot the money for election integrity efforts and to promote voting system reform. According to Federal Elections Commission, excess money could also be donated to charity or to a political party.
Bob Biersack, a senior fellow at Center for Responsive Politics who also worked for the commission for three decades, said that the money cannot be used for her personal benefits.