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Trump campaign seeks partial recount in Wisconsin

The Trump campaign filed for a limited recount...

Posted: Nov 18, 2020 1:07 PM
Updated: Nov 18, 2020 4:30 PM

The Trump campaign filed for a limited recount of two Wisconsin counties on Wednesday in a long-shot bid to overturn President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the state.

The campaign is limiting its Wisconsin recount requests to Milwaukee County and Dane County, according to a press release from the campaign.

CNN projected that Biden will win Wisconsin. According to unofficial result, he leads President Donald Trump by 20,470 votes, or 0.62%. Trump has refused to concede and instead has promoted conspiracy theories about voter fraud.

Wisconsin election officials confirmed on Wednesday that they received a partial payment of $3 million from the Trump campaign. That money paid by the Trump campaign would be enough to pay for recounts in these counties, which are Democratic strongholds. These officials said last week that the price tag for a statewide recount would be approximately $7.9 million.

Meagan Wolfe, Wisconsin's chief election official, said in a statement that the Trump campaign's petition for a recount appeared to meet all the requirements. The state commission will meet Wednesday evening to discuss the request and would issue a formal recount order on Thursday.

'We understand the eyes of the world will be on these Wisconsin counties over the next few weeks,' Wolfe said.

Milwaukee County contains Milwaukee, the state's largest city and home to the largest Black population in Wisconsin. Biden beat Trump by 317,251 votes to 134,355 in that county, according to unofficial results from the Wisconsin Election Commission.

Dane County includes the state capital of Madison, home to a many college-age voters at the University of Wisconsin. Biden won that county with 260,157 votes to 78,789 votes, according to unofficial results from the Wisconsin Election Commission.

Counties that undergo a recount will have 13 days to recount all their votes, starting on Thursday, according to procedures announced by the Wisconsin Elections Commission. The commission must certify the final results by December 1.

In both Milwaukee and Dane counties, the recounts will start on Friday and continue during weekends. Officials will take only one day off, on Thanksgiving, county elections officials said.

Scott McDonell, the Dane County clerk, said his county would start counting ballots on Friday and the recount would likely take most of the allowed 13-day period.

'We have been planning for this for several days,' McDonell told reporters Wednesday. He said that it was unlikely his county's recount would lead to significant swings in votes, 'certainly nothing anywhere near what would be required for a change in outcomes.'

The recount will be conducted at least partly with ballot scanning machines. Poll workers will be socially distanced and the space will be set up with plexiglass and police security, McDonell said. Observers from the Trump and Biden campaigns will be able to watch proceedings and challenge ballots, and the count will also be livestreamed online.

'This was a really clean election from our point of view,' he said.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, a Democrat, blasted the Trump campaign's recount request, calling it a racially biased bid to subvert the will of voters.

'It's a very futile attempt to try to disrupt democracy in the most Democratic counties in the state of Wisconsin,' he told reporters. 'This is flat out an attack on democracy in cities and places where people of color live.'

Hundreds of people will be involved in the count, and while social distancing procedures will be in effect, Barrett said he worried about the potential for coronavirus to spread in the indoor counting facility.

'It's not surprising at all that Donald Trump, the Trump campaign, wants to have one last mass gathering that's going to put people's health in peril,' he said.

In Milwaukee, the recount will take over a sprawling floor of the city's convention center, where sheriff's deputies will guard ballots 24 hours a day.

George Christenson, the Milwaukee County clerk, said the Trump campaign's allegations about irregularities in voting had no basis in fact.

'The strategy here by the Trump campaign is to throw as much paint on the wall and see what sticks,' he said. 'This is just another form of voter suppression and trying to essentially attack our minority neighborhoods.'

Experts have said it's extremely unlikely that the recounts will shift enough votes to overturn Biden's lead of 20,470 votes. (In 2016, a recount requested by Green Party candidate Jill Stein ended up increasing Trump's margin by just 131 votes.)

Former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican and Trump ally, has previously said that Trump faces slim odds of prevailing in a recount, calling Biden's margin a 'high hurdle' to overcome.

This story has been updated with more details about the recounts.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

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Reported Deaths: 3843
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin700691145
Ramsey29459521
Dakota23564198
Anoka23541236
Washington14864125
Stearns14564125
St. Louis9549121
Scott896460
Wright847548
Olmsted714637
Sherburne618746
Clay529960
Carver509715
Kandiyohi440828
Rice432338
Blue Earth431217
Crow Wing383339
Otter Tail338925
Chisago334516
Benton322753
Nobles316032
Winona297832
Douglas283040
Mower274823
Polk271527
Morrison246731
McLeod233721
Lyon232812
Beltrami230718
Goodhue222932
Becker221521
Steele21038
Itasca206324
Isanti203917
Carlton201417
Todd190314
Nicollet172126
Mille Lacs164632
Freeborn16227
Le Sueur157012
Brown156115
Cass153511
Pine14498
Meeker144812
Waseca143411
Roseau13035
Martin124721
Hubbard119729
Wabasha11301
Redwood104620
Chippewa9808
Renville95530
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Dodge9311
Watonwan8944
Wadena8637
Sibley8404
Rock8249
Houston8004
Aitkin79930
Fillmore7690
Pipestone76518
Pennington7058
Yellow Medicine69612
Kanabec68614
Swift63610
Murray6124
Faribault6093
Pope5721
Clearwater55410
Marshall5459
Stevens5403
Jackson5321
Lake4518
Koochiching4216
Wilkin4175
Lac qui Parle4124
Lincoln3811
Unassigned38159
Norman3718
Big Stone3392
Mahnomen3225
Grant2986
Kittson2518
Red Lake2303
Traverse1531
Lake of the Woods1071
Cook800

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 237371

Reported Deaths: 2571
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk34873347
Linn14787169
Scott1184692
Black Hawk11288147
Woodbury10763137
Johnson985939
Dubuque947999
Story701924
Pottawattamie682474
Dallas661260
Sioux383829
Webster378339
Cerro Gordo373252
Marshall360950
Clinton345645
Buena Vista316614
Muscatine305172
Des Moines300623
Warren294115
Plymouth287044
Wapello265072
Jones237118
Jasper231546
Lee228719
Marion211922
Carroll204325
Bremer202713
Henry19367
Crawford183116
Benton175423
Tama157442
Jackson151117
Washington150216
Delaware147621
Dickinson145812
Boone144912
Mahaska133928
Wright13107
Clay12505
Buchanan123410
Hardin122812
Hamilton119514
Page11925
Kossuth11768
Clayton115510
Cedar114614
Harrison113432
Floyd111921
Mills11129
Calhoun10987
Fayette109812
Lyon10769
Butler10748
Winneshiek105513
Poweshiek103714
Iowa101414
Cherokee9674
Winnebago96325
Chickasaw9195
Hancock9138
Sac9068
Louisa90122
Grundy89514
Allamakee88413
Cass84725
Union8437
Mitchell8429
Appanoose81613
Humboldt8125
Shelby80511
Emmet79026
Guthrie78315
Franklin76421
Jefferson7635
Madison7265
Unassigned7090
Palo Alto6744
Keokuk6567
Pocahontas6024
Howard5859
Ida54915
Osceola5461
Greene5422
Montgomery51411
Clarke5064
Davis4839
Taylor4833
Monona4567
Adair4539
Monroe45113
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