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Determination in recount sets stage for challenge

Biden and Trump

MADISON (WKOW) – Chairperson Ann Jacobs of the Wisconsin Elections Commission today made what election officials call "a determination" of the recount in Wisconsin's presidential race.

With the determination made, President Donald Trump's campaign now has five days to appeal the results of the recount.

Technically the chair does not certifying the presidential race, according to a news release from the WEC.

“This is a very different process than for the other contests on the November 3 ballot where the WEC Chair does determine the winner and issues certificates of election. There is no certificate of election in a presidential contest,” said Meagan Wolfe, administrator of the WEC and Wisconsin’s chief election official.

In presidential elections, the law requires that the chair determines the result, or the numbers, of the recount and the contest based on the certified result statements submitted by each of the 72 counties.

This determination is what can be appealed. If there is not a determination, then parties to a recount do not have anything to appeal.

Today's determination allows President Trump's campaign to exercise the five-day recount appeal rights afforded to it under Wis. Stat. 9.01(6) if the campaign believes the determination inaccurately reflects the election outcome.

As part of today’s determination, a copy of the canvass determination for president and a statement of ascertainment will be sent to the governor’s office. The governor then decides whether to sign off on the slate of presidential electors, according to a WEC news release.

On Tuesday, during the regularly-scheduled Commission meeting, the Chair will certify the other contests, which will result in the issuance of certificates of election to the winners, because there is no recount in those contests and therefore no appeal time period.

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