KEY POINTS

  • Trump filed a petition for a partial recount in Wisconsin
  • The recount will occur in Milwaukee and Dane counties
  • The partial recount is expected to start on Thursday

President Donald Trump on Wednesday filed a petition for a partial recount of ballots in two Wisconsin counties, at a cost of $3 million paid by the Trump campaign to the state's Election Commission. 

In the petition, Trump's campaign claimed the municipal clerks in voting sites in Milwaukee and Dane counties had been ordered to "illegally alter incomplete absentee ballots contrary to Wisconsin law." They also alleged that the state's Election Commission instructed the clerks to "add missing information on returned absentee ballots," Fox News reported.

"The people of Wisconsin deserve to know whether their election processes worked in a legal and transparent way. Regrettably, the integrity of the election results cannot be trusted without a recount in these two counties and uniform enforcement of Wisconsin absentee ballot requirements. We will not know the true results of the election until only the legal ballots cast are counted," Jim Troupis, counsel to the Trump campaign, said. 

"We will not stop fighting for transparency and integrity in our electoral process to ensure that all Americans can trust the results of a free and fair election in Wisconsin and across the country," he added. 

The final canvass showed Biden won 317,270 votes in Milwaukee County, while Trump won 134,357. The president-elect was victorious in Dane County, winning 260,185 to 78,800 votes. 

Nate Evans, Biden's Wisconsin communications director, released a statement saying a selective recounting would unlikely change the election's results. 

"Election officials worked extremely hard under unprecedented circumstances to ensure all votes were counted quickly and accurately, and the recount demanded and paid for by the Trump campaign will once again confirm Joe Biden's victory," Evans said. 

Recounts in both counties will cost the Trump campaign nearly $3 million. Wisconsin law says losing candidates can demand a recount if the margin is 1 percentage point or less. The state will cover the cost of a recount if the margin is less than 0.25 points, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.  

President Trump lost by a 0.6 percent margin, which means his campaign must pay for the recount.

Commission Chair Ann Jacobs is expected to issue a recount order on Thursday. The order will start the 13-day recount clock and set Dec. 1 as the deadline for completing the recount. [[Mid:3084800]]