The Trump campaign said Wednesday it is requesting a partial recount in Wisconsin, where President Donald Trump is trailing Joe Biden by more than 20,000 votes.
The campaign wired $3 million to the Wisconsin Election Commission for the long-shot bid to overturn the results in the state. In a statement, the campaign said it was asking for recounts in Milwaukee and Dane Counties, mostly Democratic areas where Biden defeated Trump by large margins. Biden captured more than 75 percent of the vote in Dane and more than 69 percent of the vote in Milwaukee.
“These two counties were selected because they are the locations of the worst irregularities,” the campaign said in a release, charging that they were areas where there were “illegally altered absentee ballots, illegally issued absentee ballots, and illegal advice given by government officials allowing Wisconsin’s Voter ID laws to be circumvented.”
The state’s top elections chief and local officials have said there were no reports of widespread problems or wrongdoing in the state.
The campaign had until the close of business Wednesday to ask for a recount, which would have to be completed ahead of the state’s Dec. 1 certification deadline.
Green Party candidate Jill Stein filed for a statewide recount in the 2016 election after Trump won the state by almost 23,000 votes. The recount netted Trump more than 100 votes.
Under Wisconsin law, a second-place finisher has the right to petition for a recount if they are losing by less than 1 percent of the vote, but the campaign has to pay the costs.
State elections officials said late Wednesday morning that they had “received a wire transfer from the Trump campaign for $3 million. No petition has been received yet, but the Trump campaign has told WEC staff one will be filed today. We have no further information at this time.”
Trump has repeatedly made claims of fraud and irregularities in the Wisconsin election, without evidence.
As of Wednesday morning, Biden was leading Trump 49.5 percent to 48.8 percent, or 1,630,716 votes to 1,610,151.
Trump campaign to request costly partial recount in Wisconsin The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ NBC News.