November 29, 2016

Catching up on Selective Vote Recounts

Green Party candidate Jill Stein is trying to initiate a recount in 3 states that Donald Trump won.  Not in any states that Hillary Clinton won, only Trump state wins in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.  The selectivity is even more odd since Hillary Clinton has suddenly joined the challenge after publicly admonishing Trump before the election for not agreeing to abide by the results.

Stein seems like she's angling for funding for her party as the Kickstarter campaign or whatever is asterisked to state that any funds not used for a recount will go to the Green Party.  Given that she's already missed the deadline for Pennsylvania, that Wisconsin and Michigan alone won't change the election results even in the unlikely event they flipped - she could be angling just to raise funds.  That's pretty cynical and manipulative of her, but hey it's politics and anyone thinking the Green Party is squeaky clean would end up with the government they deserve - a crooked one.

What's more interesting is the Democrats and Clinton looking to join in on the recount.  Three theories have been advanced (1) they're actually trying to steal the election (2) they're planting the seeds to delegitimize a Trump presidency because he lost the electoral college and didn't make 270 votes by certification day and had to be appointed by the Republicans thanks to a few states being tangled up in legal proceedings ("selected not elected" like Bush) or (3) they're trying to hide their own ballot tampering efforts and don't want it coming out.

All three are possible, the first two would be unsuccessful ultimately.  The third one is the most intriguing consideration.  But I don't know that participation would amount to successfully hiding their own nefarious activities.   And of course if  they are successful we'll never know that it was their intention.  The Democrats' end-game here is not clear but to steal 70,000 votes in PA is impossible.  Michigan and Wisconsin would leave the electoral college at 280-252 in Trump's favor.  With Hillary Clinton leading the popular vote by 1.7 million votes Democrats might claim Trump has no mandate whatsoever. That might be their real goal; setting themselves up for the 2018 midterm elections where they will already be playing defense.

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