Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein announced Wednesday she intents to file for a recount of votes in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Stein set up an online fundraising account to pay for the recounts. Within 24 hours, people donated nearly $3 million.
The states, once considered to be part of Democrat Hillary Clinton’s “firewall,” narrowly voted for Republican nominee Donald Trump in the general election, pushing him to an electoral college victory in the Nov. 8 election.
Stein originally said the campaign needed to raise more than $2 million by Friday afternoon to demand recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. After the donations began pouring in, the target became $4.5 million.
“Three states where the data suggests a significant need to verify machine-counted vote totals,” Stein said. “... In true grassroots fashion, we’re turning to you, the people, and not big-money corporate donors to make this happen.”
New York magazine reported Tuesday that a group of computer scientists and election lawyers told the Clinton campaign that they had found evidence the election results in those three states “may have been manipulated or hacked.”
“After a divisive and painful presidential race, reported hacks into voter and party databases and individual email accounts are causing many Americans to wonder if our election results are reliable,” Stein said in a statement released by her campaign. “These concerns need to be investigated before the 2016 presidential election is certified.”
According to the New York Magazine article, the Obama administration does not want Clinton to request a recount as it is “focused on a smooth transfer of power” to the Trump administration.
Trump leads Clinton in Michigan by slightly more than 14,000 votes (out of more than 4.7 million cast), according to the state. Continued counts have put the margin at less than 10,000. Michigan has 16 electoral votes and has not been called for either candidate by major media outlets. Stein received more than 51,000 votes in Michigan.
Trump leads Clinton in Wisconsin by a little more than 27,000 votes (out of nearly 3 million cast), according to WisconsinVote.org. Wisconsin and its 10 electoral votes have been called for Trump by media outlets. Stein received 30,980 votes in Wisconsin.
Trump leads Clinton in Pennsylvania by fewer than 60,000 votes (out of nearly 6 million cast), according to Pennsylvania. The state and its 20 electoral votes have been awarded to Trump by media outlets. Stein received 49,150 votes in Pennsylvania.
Trump currently has 290 electoral votes and Clinton has 232. Candidates need 270 electoral votes to win the presidency.
A story at FiveThirtyEight.com says demographics, not hacking, explain the election results in those states. Nate Cohn of the New York Times also dismissed the hacking theory.
The deadline to file for a recount in Wisconsin is Friday and it costs $1.1 million, according to Stein.