Even as the state of Pennsylvania fights against the idea of performing a statewide recount of the votes in the 2016 presidential election, and third party candidate Jill Stein sues in federal court to try to convince a judge to force it to happen, another trend is developing. Donald Trump had originally won the state by well over one percent of the vote. But as various counties and precincts have cleaned up their vote totals over the past month, his lead has plummeted – and is now a fairly small number of votes away from triggering an automatic recount which wouldn’t need a judge’s mandate.
Pennsylvania state law currently states that if the winning margin in the election is 0.5% or less, a statewide recount must take place. But in the past month Trump’s lead in the state has gone from initially being pegged at 70,638 in late November, then falling all the way to 46,938 votes, and now standing at a mere 44,307 votes (follow the blue bold-text source links for vote total verification). That’s out of a total of 6,163,006 presidential votes cast in Pennsylvania meaning Trump now leads by just 0.72%.
If Trump’s lead drops by another 0.22% of the vote, or approximately 13,400 votes, the statewide recount will automatically happen because the margin will have dropped to 0.5%. So even as Jill Stein continues to make her case to a federal judge in court, which MSN says she did on Tuesday, she’s also working with individual counties to try to get them to perform voluntary recounts. If the totals in those recounts are revised by another 13,400 votes in Hillary Clinton’s direction, which is certainly possible considering the fact that already fallen by more than 26,000 votes based on counties cleaning up their original messes.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report