Thursday, November 24, 2016

Jill Stein Green Party recount campaign explained

By Don Ellis

Our effort to recount votes in those states is not intended to help Hillary Clinton. - Jill Stein

Jill Stein and the Green Party are finally getting extensive coverage from the mainstream media, due to the Stein/Baraka Green Party Campaign's efforts in raising money to finance a recount of Presidential votes in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The question many members of the Green Party keep asking is "Why is she doing this? All she can do is help Hillary get elected."

If you think that all this recount can do is get Hillary elected, you are being incredibly naive. There are several ways in which this recount effort will help the Green Party - but before covering those, I should point out that the one thing this recount won't do is get Hillary elected.

Let's face it, if there is a party that is known for election fraud, it's the Democrats. Just ask Bernie Sanders, he can attest to that. But that's not the reason the election won't be overturned, the simple fact is that the margin in Pennsylvania is too large to overcome. Trump leads by 1.2%, over 68,000 votes, and neither party is that efficient at cheating the other.

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On Wednesday, FiveThirtyEight's Carl Bialik and Rob Arthur co-authored an outstanding article titled "Demographics, Not Hacking, Explain The Election Results", in which they concluded:

The hacking claim appears to be based on concerns about tampering with electronic voting machines. We’ve looked into the claim - or at least, our best guess of what’s being claimed based on what has been reported - and statistically, it doesn’t check out.
There’s no clear evidence that the voting method used in a county - by machine or by paper - had an effect on the vote. Anyone making allegations of a possible massive electoral hack should provide proof, and we can’t find any.
The New York (Magazine) article includes just one example, a finding that Clinton did worse in counties in Wisconsin that used electronic voting machines instead of paper ballots. It’s not clear what data the group was using to call for a recount in Michigan and Pennsylvania, or if it was looking at data at all: It could have chosen those states because they were the ones besides Wisconsin that Trump won with the smallest margins. 
Bonifaz, Halderman and the Clinton campaign officials mentioned in the article didn’t respond to requests for comment or more detail about the study.

Dr. Jill Stein is an incredibly intelligent woman, surely she is aware that a 1.2% lead won't be erased in a recount. So why is she calling for a recount?

Having not spoken with Jill, and not being psychic, I can't answer that question with a 100% guarantee of accuracy. I can only lay out the facts as we know them:

- Jill has absolutely no reason to help Hillary overturn the results of the election.

- The chance of overturning the results in even one state is tiny. The chances of overturning the results in all three states are far beyond miniscule.

Jill's recount fundraising page makes the following statement:

We cannot guarantee a recount will happen in any of these states we are targeting. We can only pledge we will demand recounts in those states. 
If we raise more than what's needed, the surplus will also go toward election integrity efforts and to promote voting system reform.

- Jill raised a total of $3.5 million in her entire campaign for President. She has (as of the time this article was written) raised $4.5 million in less than 48 hours of the recount campaign. Obviously, the overwhelming majority of this money is coming from Democrats who are still hoping they can get Hillary into the White House.

- The names "Jill Stein" and "Green Party" have been plastered all over the mainstream media - in the US and other countries - for the last 48 hours.

Obviously, there are several reasons for Jill to undertake this task:

The free publicity both Jill and the party have received cannot be measured in dollar amounts, though it has undoubtedly been worth more than what she raised in the entire 2016 election season. If it keeps up much longer, the value could easily surpass the entire dollar amount the Green Party US raised as a whole in 2016.

The recount campaign advances the Green Party's platform of "publicly-owned, open source voting equipment and deploy it (sic) across the nation to ensure high national standards, performance, transparency and accountability; use verifiable paper ballots; and institute mandatory automatic random precinct recounts to ensure a high level of accuracy in election results."

The millions of dollars raised for this effort that don't go directly to the current recounts will go toward election integrity efforts and promoting voting system reform. Ask yourself, who are going to be the people "promoting voting system reform"? Green Party candidates. And Green Party state committees.

That's right, Democrats all over the country are currently donating money that will be used by Green Party candidates to promote voting system reform.

Let that one sink in for a minute, and you'll understand why this recount campaign is such a great cause for Jill to be leading.