Not So Fast on That 'Stolen Election' Report

Vox analysis thinks evidence is weak
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 23, 2016 1:19 PM CST
Not So Fast on That 'Stolen Election' Report
In this Nov. 8, 2016, photo, a voter fills out a ballot in Wilson, Idaho.   (AP Photo/Otto Kitsinger)

A post at the Daily Intelligencer on Tuesday gave fresh hope to depressed Democrats who are hoping for some way, any way, to prevent a Donald Trump presidency. The article noted that a group of "prominent computer scientists and election lawyers" (including J. Alex Halderman, director of the University of Michigan's Center for Computer Security and Society) had told Hillary Clinton's camp that she should ask for a vote recount in three swing states—Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania—based on "persuasive evidence" they'd found that suggested results there "may have been manipulated or hacked." But Vox's Andrew Prokop checked out the evidence, and he found that "there's not much" to the claim.

For instance, the group notes that Clinton got less votes in Wisconsin counties that used e-machines versus paper ballots, but that "proves nothing," writes Prokop. Wisconsin neighbors Iowa and Minnesota also leaned Trump (and they use only paper ballots); and Michigan similarly uses paper ballots. Prokop also wonders why, if Clinton's people received this news some five days ago, no recount request has been filed, with deadlines fast approaching. "That seems to suggest they did not view the analysis as credible," Prokop writes. Read the entire Vox explainer here, as well as numbers wonk Nate Silver's "very quick analysis" on his Twitter feed, New York Times data-cruncher Nate Cohn's assertion that evidence is "weak," and Halderman's own Medium post on the matter. (More opinion stories.)

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