Clin­ton team sees re­count as big waste of re­sources

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

Hil­lary Clin­ton’s aides and sup­port­ers are urg­ing dispir­ited Democrats to chan­nel their frus­tra­tions about the elec­tion re­sults into po­lit­i­cal causes - just not into ef­forts to re­count bal­lots in three bat­tle­ground states.

The for­mer Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial can­di­date and her close aides see the re­count drive largely as a waste of re­sources, ac­cord­ing to peo­ple close to Clin­ton. The ef­fort is be­ing fu­eled by Green Party can­di­date Jill Stein, who’s formed an or­ga­ni­za­tion to try to force re­counts in Wis­con­sin, Michi­gan and Penn­syl­va­nia.

“Be­lieve me if there was any­thing I could do to make Hil­lary Clin­ton the next pres­i­dent of the United States I would,” said for­mer Penn­syl­va­nia Gov. Ed Ren­dell, a long­time Clin­ton sup­porter. “But this is a big waste of time.” Aides say Clin­ton is fo­cused on mov­ing past her un­ex­pected de­feat and has de­voted lit­tle at­ten­tion to the re­count or think­ing about her po­lit­i­cal fu­ture. She’s been spend­ing time with her grand­chil­dren and go­ing for walks near her Westch­ester home. Sight­ings of Clin­ton hik­ing with her dogs and shop­ping at a Rhode Is­land book­store went vi­ral on so­cial me­dia.

“There have been a few times this past week where all I wanted to do was curl up with a good book and our dogs and never leave the house again,” Clin­ton said in an emo­tional speech at a gala for the Chil­dren’s De­fense Fund, her one pub­lic ap­pear­ance since her loss. For­mer Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton, mean­while, has been por­ing over the elec­tion re­sults, se­cond-guess­ing de­ci­sions by top cam­paign aides and in­tensely try­ing to fig­ure out how his wife lost the white work­ing­class vot­ers who were the base of his elec­toral coali­tion, say peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the cam­paign.

Clin­ton’s team was aware of pos­si­ble dis­crep­an­cies soon after the elec­tion, telling top donors on a con­fer­ence call four days after the elec­tion that they were look­ing into po­ten­tial prob­lems in the three states. But while many cam­paign staffers be­lieve Rus­sian hack­ing in­flu­enced the out­come of the elec­tion, blam­ing for­eign actors for in­cur­sions into cam­paign and Demo­cratic Na­tional Com­mit­tee emails, they’ve found no ev­i­dence of the kind of wide­spread bal­lot box tam­per­ing that would change the re­sults of the race - or even flip a sin­gle state. — AP

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