AP: Wisconsin officials to set timeline for recount


Jack Kenyon, a senior digital science major, casts his vote for the election on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016 as others wait in line at the Kent State’s Student Recreational and Wellness Center.

Associated Press

Wisconsin election officials are expected to meet Monday to discuss a possible timeline for a recount of the state’s presidential election.

The recount comes at the request of Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who said it’s important to determine whether hacking may have affected the results. Stein says she also plans to request recounts in Pennsylvania and Michigan.

President-elect Donald Trump narrowly won Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and has a small lead in Michigan.

There’s no evidence voter results were hacked or electronic voting machines were compromised.

While Hillary Clinton’s campaign formally joined Stein’s Wisconsin recount effort, a lawyer for the Democratic campaign has said there is “no actionable evidence” of an altered outcome.

Wisconsin officials say it will be tough to finish the recount by the federally required deadline of Dec. 13.

Trump’s incoming chief of staff suggests Clinton is backing away from a deal worked out between the two presidential campaigns on how the loser would concede to the winner.

Reince Priebus tells “Fox News Sunday” that Clinton’s team “cut a deal” with Trump’s team specifying that once The Associated Press called the race in favor of one candidate, the other would call within 15 minutes to concede.

Priebus said that’s just what happened election night.

But now he’s questioning whether Clinton campaign lawyer Marc Elias is backing down from that deal by announcing Clinton will participate in a recount in Wisconsin and may do the same in Michigan and Pennsylvania. The push is being led by Stein.

AP’s director of media relations, Lauren Easton, said AP “calls races when it is clear that one candidate has prevailed over the other. We have no knowledge of what the candidates do with that information until there is a public claim of victory or a concession.”

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders said “there’s nothing wrong with” pursuing recounts to ensure the legitimacy of Trump’s Nov. 8 victory.

The former Democratic presidential candidate addressed the looming recount in Wisconsin — and the prospect of others in Michigan and Pennsylvania — Sunday morning on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

Sanders said: “No one expects there to be profound change, but there’s nothing wrong with going through the process.”

Stein is fighting for recounts in the three states there were critical to Trump’s win. Clinton’s team said Saturday it would join the effort.

Sanders also said he would support changing the electoral college system, which allowed Trump to win the presidency even though he trails Clinton by roughly 2 million votes nationally.

A senior Trump adviser is calling Clinton’s decision to join a recount effort “incredible” and noting that the president-elect has not ruled out pursuing a criminal investigation into his former Democratic rival.

Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway told CNN’s “State of the Nation” that Trump has not ruled out a criminal probe into Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state, even though Trump recently indicated he’d rather not do so.

Conway said, “He’s been incredibly gracious and magnanimous to Secretary Clinton at a time when, for whatever reason, her folks are saying they will join in a recount to try to somehow undo the 70-plus electoral votes that he beat her by.”

She added, “The idea that we are going to drag this out now where the president-elect has been incredibly magnanimous to the Clintons and to the Obamas is pretty incredible.”

Trump took to Twitter Sunday morning to condemn the Green-Party backed recount effort as “a scam.” Clinton’s team joined the effort in Wisconsin after Jill Stein filed paperwork formally requesting a recount.

Conway said she has personal concerns with the prospect of Mitt Romney being selected as secretary of state.

Conway told CNN’s “State of the Union” and NBC’s “Meet the Press” that many Trump loyalists feel betrayed by Romney’s opposition to Trump’s candidacy during the campaign. She said she’s not even sure whether Romney voted for Trump.

The comments represent an unusual airing of internal disagreement as Trump privately considers Romney for the job of the nation’s chief diplomat. Other candidates include former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker.

Conway said, “I’m all for party unity, but I’m not sure we have to pay for that with the secretary of state position.”

She noted that she would support Romney’s selection if Trump ultimately picked him to serve as the nation’s chief diplomat.

A top aide to Trump said the president-elect will reverse President Barack Obama’s opening to Cuba absent any change of direction by the Cuban government.

Priebus, who has agreed to serve as White House chief of staff, tells “Fox News Sunday,” the current arrangement between the U.S. and Cuba has benefited only Cuba.

He said Trump will want some movement in the “right direction” from Cuba to continue the diplomatic relationship. Priebus cited respect for freedom of religion as an example.

Trump can reverse Obama’s opening to Cuba without help from Congress because it was done by executive order, not legislation.

Trump pledged during the presidential campaign to undo the overtures unless the government of Raul Castro met his demands. Trump did not repeat that pledge in a statement Saturday following the death of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

Trump and Obama spoke for about 45 minutes on Saturday — the day it was announced that former Cuban leader Fidel Castro had died.

Word of the private discussion comes from Conway.

She’s not saying what the two discussed, but she said the two men “talk regularly” and “get along nicely” despite strong disagreements on policy.

Conway told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that “there’s a respect there.”

Conway won’t say what Trump might do after he becomes president with regard to U.S.-Cuban relations.