The Trump campaign signaled their intention to demand a recount in Wisconsin on Wednesday after a state official said that all ballots have been reported and Democratic nominee Joe Biden has a lead of only about 20,000 votes.
Meagan Wolfe, the Wisconsin elections commission administrator, told NBC that unofficial returns show Biden winning the state by 20,697 votes, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The narrow margin of victory for Biden roughly mirrors that which President Donald Trump had in 2016.
“All of our unofficial results have come in from the local election offices,” Wolfe also said. “Now we’re in the important process of triple-checking the results.”
BREAKING Wisconsin Elections Commission Administrator says on @NBCNews: “All of the ballots have been counted.” Joe Biden has won Wisconsin by 20,697 votes.
— Chris D. Jackson (@ChrisDJackson) November 4, 2020
“There are no dark corners or locked doors in elections. Anybody was free to watch those processes as they unfolded yesterday,” Wolfe continued. “Some of those jurisdictions even did things like livestreams. You could watch ballots being counted all day if you wanted to and all night.”
Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien announced in a statement that the campaign would ask for the votes to be recounted: “Despite ridiculous public polling used as a voter suppression tactic, Wisconsin has been a razor thin race as we always knew that it would be. There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results. The president is well within the threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so.”
Wisconsin allows for a recount if the race is within 1 percentage point.
“We’ve had a recount before and it showed we have a really good process,” Wolfe said. “We have a really good system. … I believe that that would be the case if we had a recount again in our state, that you would find that we have a really solid system here and that there’s an incredible paper trail here for every single request, registration and ballot that’s cast.”
BREAKING: Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien:
"There have been reports of irregularities in several Wisconsin counties which raise serious doubts about the validity of the results. The President is well within the threshold to request a recount and we will immediately do so.” pic.twitter.com/IUbm3FgteO
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) November 4, 2020
The latest polls before the election showed a neck-and-neck competition between Trump and Biden.
As The Daily Wire reported:
Other polls recently conducted in the state show Biden maintaining a lead, though by less of a margin than previous surveys. Trafalgar’s most recent poll gives Biden a 1-point edge, while a Susquehanna poll released Saturday gives him a 3-point advantage. Real Clear Politics’ average of the polls in Wisconsin still gives Biden a solid 6-point advantage. A recent NYT/Siena poll shows Biden ahead by 10 points.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported on Friday, “As of Friday, more than 1.7 million absentee ballots have been cast in Wisconsin, far surpassing previous records. That includes about 1.2 million mail ballots and more than 540,000 in-person early votes, which count as a form of absentee voting. To count the absentee ballots, poll workers must announce who cast each ballot, check his or her name off a poll list, open the ballot envelope, unfold the ballot and feed it into a tabulator. If the machine can’t tally the ballot because of the way it was folded or some other reason, poll workers must try to fix the error.”
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