It is now official: after a manual recount completed Thursday, Georgia certified the results of the presidential election of November 3 this Friday. Joe Biden is declared the winner, with 12,284 votes ahead of Donald Trump, and wins the 16 “Peach State” voters. But because the gap is less than 0.5 points, the US president can request a second recount, this time by machine, before Tuesday. And he will undoubtedly do so, as his lawyers try to block the certification of results in several states.
Thursday, Donald Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, denounced a “national fraud”, and indicated that the campaign would ask for a new verification. But the latter should not change anything. In Georgia, the counting was indeed carried out by machine. During the first manual recount, the authorities discovered that 5,000 ballots had not been counted, and Donald Trump, in the end, obtained 496 more votes. But these were human errors in two rural counties. A new automatic verification by scanners should therefore produce results identical to those of the count, to which will be added the ballots found during the audit.
🔴Breaking: Georgia certifies results and victory for Joe Biden, who wins all 16 voters. BUT Donald Trump can request a 2nd recount (this time at the machine after the 1st manual) until Tuesday because the difference is less than 0.5 point #Election2020results pic.twitter.com/1ES8mRJUQm
– Philippe Berry (@ptiberry) November 20, 2020
Playing the watch, Donald Trump’s new strategy
Donald Trump’s campaign ensured that these recounts were useless because the signatures of the ballots were not verified. But during the count, the signatures were checked twice. In the event of a dispute, they were examined by three people: a Democrat, a Republican and a person in charge of the poll. Then, the signature was separated from the ballot in order to protect the secrecy of the ballot boxes during the count. It is therefore physically impossible to check them again after the fact.
After a series of defeats in court (32 failures for two wins), Donald Trump’s lawyers have changed their strategy. Having failed to convince the judges that illegal votes had been counted for lack of evidence, they are now trying to block certification in several states.
In Michigan, they withdrew their complaints but denounced the pressure that two Republican members of the committee responsible for certifying the results in Detroit (Wayne county) say they have been under. According to New York Times, Donald Trump personally telephoned one of the officials. And on Friday, the US president invited several elected Republicans from Michigan to the White House. Its goal ? Question the legitimacy of the results to convince them to choose pro-Trump big voters instead of those nominated by the popular vote.
Such a rebellion would spark an unprecedented judicial and constitutional battle. However, many experts believe that such a scenario is unlikely. And Donald Trump would need to reverse the results not only in Michigan, but in two other states as well.