Hillary Clinton was right about one thing: A losing candidate drawing out the 2016 presidential contest by refusing to accept the election results is “horrifying.”
Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein has gotten 12 times the media coverage she did during the presidential election since her announcement last week that she was demanding a recount of votes in several key states.
The former candidate said her campaign decided to demand the recount following questions about whether hacking could have played a role in this year’s election. But Stein was also quick to point out that there is absolutely no evidence that it did so far.
“Let me be very clear, we do not have evidence of fraud,” Stein told CBS last week. “We do not have smoking guns. What we do have is an election that was surrounded by hacking.”
Critics, including president-elect Donald Trump, say that the Green Party recount isn’t going to do anything but help Stein line her pockets with millions she’s currently raising from disgruntled Democratic voters.
“This recount is just a way for Jill Stein, who received less than 1 percent of the vote overall and wasn’t even on the ballot in many states, to fill her coffers with money, most of which she will never even spend on this ridiculous recount,” Trump said in a statement.
Even the Hillary Clinton campaign has admitted that the recount is highly unlikely to change the outcome of the election.
Of course, that hasn’t stopped the Clinton camp from offering to join Stein’s recount efforts in Wisconsin, Michigan and possibly Pennsylvania.
Why would the battered Clinton campaign join an effort that has little chance of changing the electoral outcome in the Democrats favor?
There are two possibilities.
Perhaps Clinton and her media allies are running a last ditch play to regain legitimacy by calling into question the results of the election. In other words, if no one is sure that the results haven’t been tampered with by outside actors the media doesn’t have to be wrong and Clinton doesn’t have to look like a clown for trying to ratchet up Cold War tensions.
And all of the talk of fake news of late does make a person wonder. The longer recount talk is dragged out and the more media manipulation of the story that takes place, the more doubt there is that could least re-open the door for a Clinton victory.
That’s a scary thought because, as economist Steve Moore just pointed out on Fox, “If the Democrats challenge this and try to change the election, I think there would be a bit of a civil war in this country.”
The second and more likely possible reason that Clinton’s camp is on board for a recount that isn’t likely to change the outcome of the election is to increase the amount of tension between the incoming administration and the millions of Americans who didn’t support Trump.
Already, following an election that Clinton willingly conceded, Americans have seen weeks of violent protests and heard refrains of “not my president” from certain anti-Trump factions.
Lending legitimacy to the idea that Trump may actually not be the rightful president, even if it turns out that there’s no evidence at all of vote tampering, will only serve to energize and expand unrest from leftist factions. Clinton, after all, is a master of destabilization efforts.