WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — President-elect Donald Trump said Sunday it’s “sad” Hillary Clinton is joining an effort to force recounts of votes from the Nov. 8 election in up to three crucial states.
Trump tweeted part of Clinton’s concession speech, when she told supporters they must accept that “Donald Trump is going to be our president,” and snippets from her debate remarks, when she assailed the Republican nominee for refusing to say in advance that he would accept the Election Day verdict.
And it came on top of his saying it was a “scam” that Green Party nominee Jill Stein was revisiting the vote count in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Trump won Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, and as of Wednesday, held a lead of almost 11,000 votes in Michigan, with the results awaiting state certification Monday.
Clinton leads the national popular vote by close to 2 million votes, but Trump won 290 electoral votes to Clinton’s 232, not counting Michigan. It takes 270 to win the presidency, and the three states in question could tip the electoral balance to Clinton in the remote event that all flipped to her in recounts.
Wisconsin officials said Friday they were moving forward with the first presidential recount in state history. Clinton joined the effort Saturday, with her campaign attorney Marc Elias saying, “We intend to participate in order to ensure the process proceeds in a manner that is fair to all sides.”
Elias said Clinton would take the same approach in Pennsylvania and Michigan if Stein were to follow through with recount requests in those states.
Trump had been paying little if any attention to the recount push by Stein, who has raised millions of dollars for the effort since drawing a mere 1 percent of the vote nationally. But Clinton’s stance changed his tune.
“Hillary Clinton conceded the election when she called me just prior to the victory speech and after the results were in,” Trump tweeted on Sunday. “Nothing will change.”
He quoted from her concession speech — “We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead” — and he concluded: “So much time and money will be spent – same result!”
Trump, who repeatedly challenged the integrity of the U.S. election system before his win, earlier called the recount push “a scam by the Green Party for an election that has already been conceded.”
Trump was expected to return to New York on Sunday after spending the Thanksgiving holiday weekend at his West Palm Beach estate. His transition team said the president-elect had scheduled a series of meetings Monday with prospective administration hires.