iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The first recount of the presidential election starts Thursday in Wisconsin as two other states are preparing for their own iterations.
The Wisconsin recount is going to run from its start at 9 a.m. Thursday until the set end time of 8 p.m. on Dec. 12. That completion deadline was set by the Wisconsin Elections Commission because the federal deadline for all recounts is Dec. 13, 35 days after the election.
That is the same day by which Michigan and Pennsylvania, where other recount petitions have also been submitted, would have to complete their expected recounts as well.
The commission received the nearly $3.5 million wire transfer from former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein on Tuesday, allowing the process to move forward.
The recount is going to be done by both hand and machines, depending on the county. Earlier this week, the commission denied Stein’s request for the entire recount to be done by hand because it does not have the authority to give such an order, Reid Magney, the commission’s public information officer, told ABC News.
Forty-eight of the state’s 72 counties will be completing the recount by hand, while 14 counties plan to use optical scanners and 10 counties plan to use a combination of optical scanners and hand counts, though those numbers may change, Magney said.
County clerks in each of the counties will send a summary email to the commission either at the end of each night or early the next morning during the recount, and the commission will post a spreadsheet with ward-level data on the recount daily, Magney said.
According to the Wisconsin Elections Commission, Donald Trump won the state with 1,404,000 votes, and Hillary Clinton came in second with 1,381,823 votes — a difference of 22,177 votes. Stein had 31,006 votes.
Stein has said that she was calling for the recount “because of the vulnerability of … voting systems and various indicators of concern,” though she admitted that she does not expect the outcome of the election to change. Clinton’s team has said it will support the recount effort.
Trump tweeted that the recount was a “scam” on behalf of the Green Party and later made the unsubstantiated claim that he “won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.” His claims have not been independently verified, and election officials from numerous states — including Wisconsin — have criticized Trump’s claim of having won the popular vote nationwide and said that there was no widespread illegal voting in their states.
“The 2016 election cycle has already been challenging for local election officials and an unprecedented statewide recount for president is one last hurdle,” the commission’s administrator, Michael Haas, wrote in the recount order released Tuesday. “We are confident that the recount will demonstrate the security of elections in Wisconsin and highlight the work done by local election officials to ensure that elections in the state are administered in a fair and transparent manner.”
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