Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign said on Saturday it would help with efforts to secure recounts in several states, even as the White House defended the declared results as “the will of the American people”.
The campaign’s general counsel, Marc Elias, said in an online post that while it had found no evidence of sabotage, the campaign felt “an obligation to the more than 64 million Americans who cast ballots for Hillary Clinton”.
“We certainly understand the heartbreak felt by so many who worked so hard to elect Hillary Clinton,” Elias wrote, “and it is a fundamental principle of our democracy to ensure that every vote is properly counted.”
In response, President-elect Donald Trump said in a statement: “The people have spoken and the election is over, and as Hillary Clinton herself said on election night, in addition to her conceding by congratulating me, ‘We must accept this result and then look to the future.’”
Wisconsin began recount proceedings late on Friday after receiving a petition from Jill Stein, the Green party candidate. Stein claims there are irregularities in results reported by Wisconsin as well as Michigan and Pennsylvania, where she plans to request recounts next week, having raised millions of dollars from supporters.
Trump called Stein’s effort a “scam” and said it was “just a way … to fill her coffers with money, most of which she will never even spend on this ridiculous recount”.
“The results of this election should be respected instead of being challenged and abused,” he added, “which is exactly what Jill Stein is doing.”
A spokeswoman for Stein did not respond to a request for comment. Speaking to CNN, however, Stein said she had “no contact with the Clinton campaign” and added: “I have said consistently that if there are questions about the accuracy and security I would challenge it, no matter who was the winner.”