We Can Count on Jill Stein
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Many people found themselves upset, angry, and sometimes confused over the results of the recent election, with some pointing their fingers at tampering or hacking the vote or miscounts. Jill Stein, former candidate for president from the Green Party, has created a fundraiser meant to protect election integrity. Stein and the Green Party mean to collect enough money to fund recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, where independent research suggests discrepancies occurred, and coincidentally, all these states went red this year.
“When she first came out a lot of journalists and political analysts thought that she was just doing it for… Hillary Clinton and the democratic party, and interestingly, she tweeted that she isn’t doing it for them,” says US History Teacher Crystal Divers.
Stein has denied that she is doing this for Clinton and has been critical of her in the past. In fact, she claims that this isn’t even about the results of this election, but this is about protecting the integrity of the election and ensuring that the American people can trust the reported results.
“I think the doubt is already there… whether or not it can be for genuine reasons, that can be discussed, but I think there already is, at least among some groups obviously, there is this doubt about [whether] the way we have run our election is adequate and accurate and safe and secure and… at this point maybe the best thing for everyone’s faith in the system would be to go ahead and do this recount and do the investigation and show that nothing strange happened, show that nothing was amiss, and as a result, maybe it will restore some of that lost faith,” says Government Teacher Jenna Griner.
Currently, Stein is tantalizingly close to reaching the 7 million dollar goal, having raised approximately 6.5 million since the campaign began on November 23rd. Many are still skeptical, however, about whether or not this money is going to where she claims it will. Some believe that this is a scam to get Stein and the Green Party millions while the recount falls to the wayside.
“You wanna think that it’s coming from a point of integrity, like she really is concerned about the election, but on the other hand she’s now tweeting that she’s not doing it for Clinton, so then why are you doing it?… It could be a really good scam to make money,” says Divers.
Efforts to make the recount happen are already underway in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, and the site is asking for volunteers to help make it happen. In addition, even if the recount happens in all three states and they all end up going blue, Clinton still would not get the 270 electoral votes she needs to win the election. However, it’s possible they hope to delay the process long enough for the electoral votes to go to Congress.
“If it’s left up to congress then congress is gonna vote for trump… so why would you do that? Congress is primarily republican, both chambers, and I think that would be grasping at straws if that would be the case,” says Divers.
If the decision of whether or not to include those electoral votes went to Congress and they did end up deciding not to include them, essentially in support of Hillary, Trump would no longer have the electoral votes needed to have won the election. In that case, it would once again be left to Congress to decide who the president elect will be, and in a Republican majority, it is unlikely Clinton would win.
“I don’t see this helping us move forward as a country. I think it will create more division on both sides, [and] I think that we’ll see people dig in even more rather than getting all in with trying to work together,” says Griner.