Why a Recount? The Professor Who Sparked it Explains Why

Please circulate this message:

We need as many concerned citizens as possible to strongly support the recounts requested by Dr. Jill Stein and Rocky De La Fuente in Wisconsin, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Florida.

Dec 1, 2016

Dr. Jill Stein, Green Party Presidential candidate, is doing something extremely valuable for American democracy by requesting a recount in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania; key states where results differed significantly from exit polls and the margin of victory was razor thin. 

The Reform Party’s candidate, Roque “Rocky" De La Fuente has also requested a recount of the presidential election in WI and Nevada, and will soon do so in Florida “to create a nationwide awareness of the vulnerability of our election system” and to ensure that “your vote counts for the candidate for whom it is cast.”  He described his recount efforts as a “spot check” on the election results.

We appreciate De La Fuente's contribution to transparency, and we thank Dr. Stein for her courageous stand for election integrity, and for her willingness to endure attacks from both mainstream parties and the media. We believe the recount is already shining a needed spotlight on our broken and insecure voting system, and on an elections establishment woefully unprepared to assure the American public that every vote is counted as cast. 

Scientists have extensively documented the reasons that privatized electronic vote counting, which often cannot be properly audited or recounted, is unacceptable in our modern democratic elections. Sticking our heads in the sand will only lead us blindly into a constitutional crisis, if it has not done so already. Right now the public should want to examine the unfolding recount and what it can, and cannot tell us,  blanket assurances from voting officials notwithstanding. 

They should also demand that the ballots be counted by hand, not by the same vote tabulating machines that counted them in the first place.

The 2016 elections were defined by accusations of partisan and foreign manipulations, and charges of "rigging" by the President-elect (who claimed the elections are rigged, but only if he lost). Given all the suspicions, and public distrust of the voting technology, Stein's and De la Fuente’s willingness to step up and request a publicly verified recount will, at the very least, allow a vital discussion to continue about why election experts see our system as so vulnerable to manipulation, hopefully point out critical faults, and show us how we can quickly repair the breaches before 2018 and 2020.

Let’s be resoundingly clear: Our democratic election system is in crisis and badly needs mending. American exceptionalism unfortunately does not apply to our voting technology.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with these candidates requesting a recount. 

In fact American patriots who believe in honest democratic elections should protest loudly that our voting systems have been so egregiously compromised. This issue of insecure elections is one place where all sides of the political spectrum seem to agree, and we should all work together for reform. If this recount effort leads to stronger public scrutiny, and trans-partisan support for core electoral reform, it will be a resounding, even historic success.

Both Dr. Stein and De la Fuente should be applauded for their civic service.


For the National Election Defense Coalition,

Ben Ptashnik
Executive Director,  
National Election Defense Coalition (NEDC)