“Election Integrity Depends on You!” claimed Green Party candidates of this election Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka. Just as the nation thought the dramatics of the election cycle might be coming to a halt, Stein called for recounts in the three key battleground states of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan. Because this election has been particularly upsetting and tumultuous for folks across the nation, a recount unfairly offers a glimmer of hope. Stein’s paranoia is certainly driving this $7 million recount effort, but there may also be another motive.
Stein’s website offers no explanation as to why she believes she is the right person to spearhead the recount effort. Hillary Clinton’s campaign lawyer Marc Elias wrote in his post on Medium they had no intention of filing for recounts themselves because they found no evidence to prove any hacking or other voting malice had taken place. But, now that a
recount in Wisconsin is set to take place, the Hillary campaign has signed on to “ensure the process proceeds in a manner that is fair to all sides.” This statement by Elias somewhat invalidates what Stein claims to be her reasoning for the recount: “…the voting machines used in Wisconsin were banned in California after they were shown to be highly vulnerable to hacking and malicious programming due to lacking security features.” If the Clinton campaign found no evidence of malice, it is no surprise the woman who insinuated Wi-Fi and vaccines may be harmful to children’s development is once again spewing conspiracies to not only her supporters, but everyone who is beginning to heal from a painful election.
At this point, the Jill Stein campaign has raised over $6 million toward their goal. We do not know how much these recounts are actually going to cost, but as the recount in Wisconsin begins, a cost estimate will come from the county clerk soon. It becomes more than a little suspicious that the Stein campaign is raising millions without a formal estimate of how much these recounts will cost. The president-elect has already taken to Twitter to shut down these recounts as a desperate scheme by the Green and Democratic parties. Although many statements by the president-elect are unfounded, this one seems to have just enough suspicion around it to come across as valid.
When many Americans have come away the past few weeks very confused, the call for a recount offers little hope for a change to the situation. As always, Jill Stein seems to be grasping for any attention she can get by capitalizing on our collective hopes and fears.
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A version of this article appeared in the Monday, November 28th print edition. Email Connor Borden at [email protected]