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Wisconsin judge rejects bid to stop election recount

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A federal judge in the US has rejected a request by President-elect Donald Trump’s supporters to stop a recount of election votes in the state of Wisconsin.

“The recount is an inherent part of what ensures the integrity of elections,” US District Judge James Peterson said on Friday evening, according to court transcripts.

The ruling came while the Michigan Supreme Court denied an appeal by defeated Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein on Friday evening to restart the state’s recount.

On Wednesday evening, a federal judge stopped the recount of nearly 5 million ballots in Michigan, ruling that Stein has no constitutional right to demand another look at ballots.

On Tuesday, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled 3-0 that Stein, who finished fourth in Michigan on November 8, didn’t have a chance of winning even after a recount and therefore isn’t an “aggrieved candidate.”

A supporter holds up a sign while Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein speaks at a news conference on Fifth Avenue across the street from Trump Tower on December 5, 2016 in New York City.  (Photo by AFP)

The appeals court said Stein should not have been allowed to demand a recount, agreeing with the Republican Party attorney general who argued that the three-day recount must end because the candidate had no grounds to mount the challenge.

The Wisconsin state elections commission has completed the recount of some 88 percent of the ballots cast in the presidential election.

On Monday, a court hearing is also likely on a possible recount in the state of Pennsylvania.

Stein had challenged the results in three battleground states won by Trump. The recount demands have reignited a debate on accuracy, security and fairness of the US electoral system.

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