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Green Party candidate Jill Stein sues for hand recount in Wisconsin

Green Party candidate Jill Stein sues for hand recount in Wisconsin

Friedrichs said it is possible the recount, of granted, would not begin until December.

Commission Administrator Mike Haas held a teleconference with clerks Wednesday to walk them through final preparations. The state's largest county, Milwaukee, was recounting the ballots by feeding them through the same machines that counted them on election night.

Green Party candidate Jill Stein wants them in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, all of which defied pre-election polls and went Republican in the presidential race. A lawyer for the state Republican Party called the filing "without any merit whatsoever".

Trump's win in MI gives the Republican 306 electoral votes to Democrat Hillary Clinton's 232.

The complaint contends that Clinton is the only person who could benefit from a recount and that she appears to have illegally helped Stein raise almost $7 million for the recounts in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and MI.

Even so, the campaigns for Trump, Clinton and Stein all had observers spread throughout the state to watch the process.

So far, Stein has only officially filed for a recount in Wisconsin, although she plans to ask for recounts in MI and Pennsylvania as well.

Stein can ask a judge to order the recount be done by hand, which could considerably delay how quickly it gets done. She has already requested recounts in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

Republican Donald Trump won all three states.

Now Hillary Clinton's campaign has said it's joining the effort, calling for recounts in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania - states that Trump won by a close margin. She said the state has indicated some of the cost will be covered from what Stein paid, but it is unlikely all of the money spent locally will be repaid.

The Michigan recount could start as early as Friday. But Stein says the recount will ensure the integrity of the election.

Stein spokeswoman Margy Levinson said in an email that the campaign decided not to appeal the ruling due to the tight time constraints for completing the Wisconsin recount, which begins Thursday.

Thomsen said Monday that "ultimately at the end of the day, the count is going to be the same". But the commission left it up to local election officials to determine the best method for conducting the recount, either by hand or using ballot tabulation machines. The commission's decision came after staff recommended sticking with a state law that allows county clerks to decide whether to count by hand or use machines.

Wisconsin Elections Commission Chairman Mark Thomsen vigorously defended Wisconsin's election system, saying he was certain that president-elect Donald Trump would emerge as the victor after the recount. The commission says the clerks will have to hire thousands of temporary workers as well as work extra hours and weekends to meet a commission-imposed December 12 deadline.