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The Wisconsin Recount Follies Continue

On Day Five of the Wisconsin presidential election recount, as reported by Fox 6 News, a milestone has been reached. Over a million votes have now been recounted, and the recount effort is finished in six of the 72 Wisconsin counties. Donald Trump now has 20 fewer votes than he had at the close of the polls on November 8; Hillary Clinton also has exactly 20 fewer votes than she had at the close of the polls, so Trump’s margin of victory is literally unchanged. Gary Johnson (who came in third in the actual election) has gained 13 votes over what he had on November 8; and Jill Stein, who came in fourth and who petitioned for this recount, has gained a grand total of 27 votes.

That's all there is to show for it.

Over the last six years, Wisconsin has been the venue for considerable political drama. There was first the breathtaking Republican victory of 2010: Prior to the November election, Democrats were in control of the statehouse and both houses of the state legislature, and in fact held every state-wide office save one (attorney general); five of Wisconsin’s eight representatives in Congress were Democrats. After the election, the statehouse and both houses of the legislature were in Republican control; all state-wide officeholders save three (secretary of state, one U.S. senator, and the supervisor of the Department of Public Instruction) were Republicans, and five of the eight congressmen were now Republicans.

This was followed by the tumultuous riots in the state capital, Madison, in the wake of the historic Act Ten legislation which limited the power of public-sector unions in various ways and permitted balancing of the state budget (a constitutional requirement); then a closely fought election to the state Supreme Court in 2011 (which led to a state-wide recount of the results, until it was finally certified that conservative Justice David Prosser had won); then the Walker recall election that fall.

In the wake of the Supreme Court recount, the state legislature in 2015 enacted certain changes to the recount law, such that, (1) in a local election in which 4,000 or fewer votes were cast, only an election in which the margin of victory was 10 votes or fewer would qualify for a recount at public expense; and (2) in an election involving more than 4,000 votes, the margin of victory which would permit a recount was lowered from .50% to .25% of the total votes.

Next Page: Scott Walker responds to the recount.