President-elect Donald Trump's campaign filed an objection on Dec. 1 with the Michigan Bureau of Elections in an effort to stop a recount filed by Green Party presidential candidate Dr. Jill Stein.
The Trump campaign called Stein's filing for a recount of almost 4.8 million votes a "lawless, insulting request," according to the Detroit Free Press.
Trump's team suggested that a recount might change the results:
[V]oters should not risk having the Electoral College door knocked off its hinges all because a 1% candidate is dissatisfied with the election’s outcome. Given her tiny vote total, (Green Party presidential candidate Jill) Stein does not and could not possibly allege a good faith belief that she may have won the state of Michigan.
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Mark Brewer, one of Stein's lawyers, countered: "The law is very clear that once a candidate files a petition, that the board shall conduct a recount. Just because Stein finished fourth, that’s irrelevant. I don’t think any of these objections have merit. It’s a stalling tactic."
While Trump asserts the recount is "lawless," Stein lawfully paid the required amount -- $973,250 -- to have each county in Michigan do a recount, although the actual cost is likely to be higher and will be absorbed by the counties.
The state Board of Canvassers will reportedly rule on Trump's objection on Dec. 2, which is when Stein's recount was supposed to begin in Oakland and Ingham counties.
Chris Thomas, director of the state Department of Elections, has said that once the ruling is made, a recount cannot begin for two business days, which would push the recount into the following week.
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Trump's lawyers, who are actively delaying the recount, also argued there is not enough time to do the recount by Dec. 19, the date when Michigan's 16 electoral votes are officially cast.
Trump's objection states: "To count that many votes by hand is not feasible. Any attempt to finish the process in time will no doubt lead to errors."
Trump, who claimed numerous times that the general election was rigged before Election Day, won Michigan in the original count by 10,704 votes.
Stein slammed Trump for trying to block her recount request, notes POLITICO:
The recount in Michigan, which has been driven by an outpouring of grassroots support in the state — will go forward.
The Michigan Board of State Canvassers and Director of Elections has been a model of professionalism in moving this recount forward in an efficient, transparent manner.
Yet the Trump campaign’s cynical efforts to delay the recount and create unnecessary costs for taxpayers are shameful and outrageous.