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President Trump’s marketing campaign acknowledged on Wednesday that it plans to request a recount within the state of Wisconsin, which main information retailers have known as in favor of his opponent Joe Biden.
A recount can—in idea not less than—change the result of a presidential race if the brand new rely results in a state’s electoral votes being awarded to a distinct candidate. However, whereas recounts are pretty widespread, they nearly by no means have an effect on the result of elections at any stage.
In the event you’re inquisitive about Trump’s specific recount demand, and what it’s going to imply, here’s a plain English Q&A.
What kind of recount is Trump asking for?
Trump’s marketing campaign supervisor claimed with out proof on Wednesday that there have been stories of voting irregularities in Wisconsin and that the President would request a recount.
Beneath Wisconsin regulation, candidates have the proper to request a recount if the margin of victory is underneath 1%. Present returns present Biden main by 20,000 votes, which would seem to fall inside that margin. Wisconsin regulation permits a candidate in these conditions to request a recount of the entire state’s vote or simply particular person counties. The Trump marketing campaign hasn’t indicated if it’s going to demand its Wisconsin recount to be statewide.
Will a recount change the result in Wisconsin?
It’s all however sure it received’t. Wisconsin was additionally the topic of a recount demand in 2016 filed by a third-party candidate. The recount noticed a complete of 131 further votes being added to the entire of President Trump—an all however insignificant quantity given Trump’s preliminary lead of greater than 20,000 votes. On condition that Biden’s lead is about the identical, it’s laborious to see how a recount may change the result.
Can Trump ask for recounts in different states?
Presumably, but it surely’s unclear if he’ll. Whereas the legal guidelines of sure states require an computerized recount within the case of a really shut race, others permit a recount if a candidate requests one. In some instances, candidates should go to courtroom to demand a recount.
Election website Ballotpedia is a useful place to seek out the recount guidelines for particular person states, together with different battleground states like Georgia, Arizona, and Pennsylvania. For now, nonetheless, the Trump marketing campaign hasn’t mentioned it’s going to pursue a recount outdoors of Wisconsin—and it’s unclear for now if the margins in these states shall be shut sufficient to justify a recount demand.
Who pays for the price of a recount?
It depends on the state and the tightness of the race. In some instances, the state will foot the invoice if the result is exceptionally shut. In others, the candidate difficult the vote rely should pay—as occurred in 2016 when Wisconsin required the third-party candidate to pay $3.5 million. Such guidelines might clarify, partly, why the Trump marketing campaign has but to request recounts in different states.
Extra politics coverage from Fortune:
- USPS update: The most recent on how absentee ballots are being counted in swing states
- Biden’s Arizona win makes Pennsylvania less crucial
- Uber, Lyft, and gig corporations win large after Prop 22 passes in California
- This nail-biter election generated the highest U.S. voter turnout rate in 120 years
- How Trump can and can’t use the courts to form the election