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Trump shaping administration as Stein presses for recounts

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Kathleen “KT” McFarland is seen at her home in New York in March 2006. President-elect Donald Trump has tapped Fox News analyst McFarland to serve as deputy national security adviser.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President-elect Donald Trump, left, stood with investor Wilbur Ross, Nov. 20, after meeting at the Trump National Golf Club Bedminster clubhouse in Bedminster, N.J.

PALM BEACH, Fla. » President-elect Donald Trump pressed forward with two more administration picks, as failed Green Party candidate Jill Stein took new steps to force recounts across key Midwestern battlegrounds that could complicate Trump’s push for national unity.

Stein, who earned little more than 1 percent of the national vote, formally requested a Wisconsin recount this afternoon, vowing to do the same in the coming days in Michigan and Pennsylvania. Wisconsin officials confirmed this evening they would move forward with the first presidential recount in state history. There is no evidence of election tampering in the states where Trump scored razor-thin victories, but Green Party spokesman George Martin insisted “the American public needs to have it investigated to make sure our votes count.”

“We’re doing this to ensure the integrity of our system,” he said.

Trump’s team ignored questions about the looming recounts. Set to assume the presidency in 55 days, he was focused instead on the daunting task of building an administration from scratch.

Gathered with family at his Mar-a-Lago Palm Beach estate for the holiday weekend, the incoming president made two senior-level staff appointments and scheduled meetings with several more prospective administration officials.

He tapped Fox News analyst Kathleen Troia “KT” McFarland to serve as deputy national security adviser and campaign attorney Donald McGahn as White House counsel. In a statement, Trump cited McFarland’s “tremendous experience and innate talent” and said McGhan “has a brilliant legal mind, excellent character and a deep understanding of constitutional law.”

Having faced criticism about the inexperience of his initial picks, Trump finds in McFarland someone who previously worked under three presidents, although none since Ronald Reagan. McGhan, a veteran Republican election lawyer, served as Trump’s attorney during the campaign.

Neither position requires Senate confirmation.

Trump transition spokesman Sean Spicer said the president-elect scheduled Monday meetings with eight more prospective administration hires, a group that includes several business leaders, Pennsylvania Rep. Lou Barletta, and David Clarke, the Wisconsin sheriff who is an aggressive opponent of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Facing external pressure from Stein, there were also signs of internal discord within the president-elect’s small inner circle as Trump weighed his choices for secretary of state.

The options for the nation’s chief diplomat include former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who lacks foreign policy experience but was intensely loyal to Trump, and 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who aggressively opposed Trump’s candidacy but is largely regarded as more qualified.

Trump spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway took the unusual step of shining light on the controversy over the Thanksgiving holiday, tweeting that she had been “receiving a deluge of social media & private concerns re: Romney Some Trump loyalists warn against Romney as sec of state.”

Meanwhile, Stein announced on her website she has raised enough money to fund recounts in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and was pursuing additional funding to do the same in Michigan.

Trump’s Nov. 8 victory was unexpected and historic, by some measures.

Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton leads the national popular vote by close to 2 million votes. Trump scored narrow victories in key battleground states, however, giving him the necessary 270 electoral votes to assume the presidency.

He won in Pennsylvania. He won in Wisconsin, breaking a Democratic winning streak dating back 32 years. He holds a slim lead in Michigan, where a Republican presidential candidate hadn’t won since 1988; The Associated Press still hasn’t officially called that race.

Wisconsin, where Trump leads by little more than 22,000 votes, has never before conducted a presidential recount. It will this year, state administrator Michael Haas announced today, citing recount requests by Stein and independent candidate Rocky De La Fuente.

“The Commission is preparing to move forward with a statewide recount of votes for President of the United States, as requested by these candidates,” Haas said, noting that the recount is expected to be completed by the Dec. 13 federal deadline.

In Michigan, Trump’s 10,704-vote lead is expected to be certified by the state elections board Monday. The deadline to ask for a recount is Wednesday.

A statewide recount would cost Stein roughly $790,000, said Fred Woodhams, a spokesman for the Michigan secretary of state. An opposing candidate would have seven days to file objections to the recount petition, after which the board would schedule a public hearing and later issue a ruling on the objections.

Trump’s transition team indicated he was focused on the challenges of governing.

Since arriving at his Palm Beach estate Wednesday, they said, the president-elect has spoken to the prime ministers of Greece, Hungary and Sweden, along with the presidents of Panama and Slovenia.

He is expected to return to his New York City home on Sunday.

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  • If anyone wants to see how Mr. Trump lies, you may want to take a look at the news story today about his golf course in Scotland. He lied his way through the whole process; tortured the neighbors; and is now losing a fortune at the place.

    Great businessman!

    • And is Hillary going to continue to rake in all the revenue she gathered making nice-nice with the pharmaceutical companies?
      It truly is unfortunate that we could not have gotten to feel the Bern.

      • Bernie Sanders was not an option to the the majority of US citizens. With his socialist agenda, US would have seen non sustainable increased government handouts for education, make work social programs, a super high minimum wage. Also he is very questionable as leader of the US military in dealing with global Islamic terrorism, countries like Russia, China, etc. Bernie and Hillary are losers, washed up and need to go away. Tulsi Gabbard is a different story and is on the rise. No question Gabbard has what it takes to be the political leader of the US military and not too sure about the rest but in 4 or 8 years from now, she and her advisors will figure it out. The Clinton and Bush dynasties have thankfully come to an end.

        • I don’t know if that’s true, but you are comparing apples to oranges. Clinton used her political power tomake money through paid speeches and face time with her when she was Sec. Of State. Trump did not make money off the public. Did you read that.the Clinton Foundation donations are down #&% since she lost the election? Obvious it was pay to play.

    • IRT Klastri, hey, Happy Thanksgiving. You just returned from D.C. after finding out Ms Hillary lost the Presidential election. On the subject of this article, Ms Hillary et al has the right to call for a recount, for reason, but it will not change the final result. Mr. Donald J. Trump is the United States President-elect.

    • Hey klassless, how was the crow. I never ate crow before. Or was it mynah bird. Just to let you know the turkey, ham, yams, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry jelly, crab salad, pumpkin pie, vanilla ice cream, walnut shrimp, was simply amazing. Better luck in 4 years.

      • I was wrong about the election and have written that over and over. I badly underestimated the number of voters who are gullible, white supremacists, racists and imbeciles. My bad.

        I was not wrong however about Mr. Trump’s lying and mental illness. He’s always broken most of his campaign pledges and he’s not even in office. What a pathetic mess.

        • klastri you make it sound like we are a nation of Deplorables, that’s OK, with that kind of attitude, the corrupt Democrats will never win the White House again. Maybe the Dems should morph into the Green Party and have dear Jill as its leader?

        • klastri has not gotten over his/her bad habit of resorting to name-calling those who disagree with his/her views. It only serves to undermine what little credibility he/she has.

        • Maipono – No, the good news is that it’s less than half deplorable. Mrs. Clinton won the popular vote.

          Once Trump voters, finally, realize that they have voted against their own self interests, they may wake up. The wealthy and better educated don’t have as much to worry about.

        • Klastri IS THE BIGGEST LOSER I have ever met in my life….errrr well right there with Kanye (WOW…both k’s). Probably can count the number of people who can stand k on 1 finger!

        • Keonigohan – I was wrong about the election results. But I didn’t lie on here every single day like you did. You are a liar – apparently pathologically unable to be truthful.

        • @ klastri …former Fed Judge who you claim you were appointed by none other than former potus GW Bush…right up there with all the entertainment zombies who said they were going to leave lol

        • Keonigohan – Again, you are lying. I never wrote anything like that. You are just making that up – like you make up everything you write. One sad and pathetic case.

        • Doesn’t matter klastri… your infantile tirades speak for themselves. Keep up the good work undermining your credibility!

        • klastri…you are a dreamer…fantasize a lot & hardcore BSer. You say one thing on other websites and deny it here…a born narcissistic st best.

    • Klastri, as a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, I would like your opinion on whether Stein will prevail in getting a recount under Michigan Election Law, the key provision being Section “168.862 Fraud or mistake in canvass or returns of votes; recount petition by candidate,” which reads as follows: “Sec. 862. A candidate for office who believes he or she is aggrieved on account of fraud or mistake in the canvass or returns of the votes by the election inspectors may petition for a recount of the votes cast for that office in any precinct or precincts as provided in this chapter.” Mustn’t there be evidence of such for a recount to be approved? I look forward to your reply.

      • There does not need to be any evidence for the recount effort to be approved; however, Ms. Stein did point out that roughly 85,000 of the ballots cast did not record a choice for President in the electronic system – a very unusual event in Michigan. So it’s likely that some variance will be found in a manual recount. Because of the margin of Ms. Stein’s loss, the recount will most likely benefit Mrs. Clinton more, since she lost by a razor thin 10,000 or so votes.

        Since Ms. Stein lost by more than 0.5%, she must pay the entire cost of the recount, and she has apparently raised the money to do that. The official recall request cannot be filed until the Board of Canvassers meets on Monday to certify the election results.

        Ms. Stein wrote – “We don’t have a smoking gun that there was voter fraud going on here,” she said. “But we do not have to prove that there was fraud to justify the need for a voting system that we have confidence in.”

  • Trump’s selection process for top posts in his administration bears a closer resemblance to a reality tv show than to a serious process of consideration and vetting. Candidates are paraded in front of cameras as they enter and exit Trump Tower in a spectacle that resembles a “perp walk.” Then, as is happening with the two leading candidates for Secretary of State, Trump’s transition team members appear on television to praise or criticize the candidates. Trump’s willingness to send his team out to humiliate job applicants is unprecedented, and the willingness of the candidates to submit to this process indicates a degree of desperation that should disqualify them. Christie has been courted and rejected so many times that he’s like a yoyo — humiliated one day and crawling back to Trump Tower the next day, only to be humiliated again. Past administrations have floated trial balloons, subtly leaking the names of candidates in order to test the reactions of both party insiders and the public, but can anyone recall anything resembling what Trump has done with Romney? First, he’s paraded in front of cameras, and then Kellyanne Conway and other Trump team members fan out to the tv talk shows to blast him. The process that previous administrations followed, where candidates undergo weeks of in-depth vetting, has been cast aside for something that resembles a sleazy tv reality show. Trump announced Pompeo, his pick for director of the CIA, five days after Pompeo was recommended to him. How thorough was that vetting process?

    • You think this is Trump getting back at Romney,dangling the carrot in front of him while having Conway say how much Republicans are complaining about Romney. Reminds me of the movie Carrie, where they bring her up to stage only to dump on her.

  • It will be interesting to see what happens with the recounts. We should look closer at issues of voter suppression, and the difficulty of voting (it’s shameful that in what’s allegedly “the greatest country on earth” people have to wait hours in line to vote). I have friends in WA state, they have have all mail in voting. I think that’s a terrific idea. Paper ballots too. And it saves money as you don’t have to staff polling stations.

    We need to make it as easy as possible to vote. Perhaps by automatically registering everyone as a voter when they turn 18.

    It’s good that it’s Stein doing this. She has no chance of winning, but it may help throw light on the process.

    Be funny if enough electors abstained from voting so that Trump didn’t win, but no one else did either. The vote would then be sent to the House. Who might vote for a more sane Republican.

    Romney would be the far sensible pick over Guiliani. Which is, I suppose, why they’ll pick Guiliani.

  • When Kellyanne Conway tweets “Receiving deluge of social media & private comms re: Romney Some Trump loyalists warn against Romney as sec of state,” has she gone rogue by undermining someone Trump is seriously considering? Or she part of a Trump scheme in which Trump simultaneously tries to appeal to moderate republicans by seeming to consider Romney at the same time that he is underhandedly fueling a Romney backlash from his rabid base so that he can appoint the truly unhinged Giuliani, a candidate has huge conflicts of interests with foreign counties who have paid him tens of millions as he maximized his 9/11-themed profiteering?

  • Potential Secretary of State Romney “[Trump’s] foreign policies would make America and the world less safe. He has neither the temperament nor the judgment to be president. And his personal qualities would mean that America would cease to be a shining city on a hill.”

  • stein is a crybaby the recount will not help her out she just does not like trump, when trump won she probably brought out her color crayons and clay to do things for her depressed state of mind, she is a true liberal with a mental disorder.

  • ….what’s Jill Stein’s angle? She opposed HRC during the Campaign and pretty much endorsed President Elect Trump……so what’s up with that? “As The World Turns”.
    President Trump’s selection are going extremely well,especially with his selection of Nikki Haley and Betsy Devos. Two extremely qualified Women!WOW!

    For Secretary Of State: I do like Rudy Giuliana more than Mitt Romney,because of his loyalty to Pres. Trump during the campaign. Out of these two? I tend to lean more towards Mitt because of his experience as Governor and his business savvy in the business world! And right now? The country today,needs someone who can get great deals done for the country…… Not this Baloney Iran Nuke Deal Stuff or even more crazy……. TPP!
    BTW ? Where’s Ambassador John Bolten? Wasn’t his name on this list too? Amb.John Bolten would be HUGE help in the Trump administration as Secretary Of State! Hands Down!

    ………For Rudy ? maybe a post for Home Land Security/TSA ? After 911?This is more his niche.

    OFF GRID: Didn’t you just Love President Elect Trump’s speech on YouTube! He totally dissed the dishonest MSM! And now? They are “Feeling The Burn”.haaaaaaaaaaa! This is definitely the way to go President Trump! Social Media! Never Trust the MSM ,never trust these buggaahs again! IMUA! President Trump!

      • Oh yes! I do concur. I don’t like Romney Either,but if experience has any merits in Trump’s selection,than…. Huston we have a problem! Here’s hoping for Rudy OR Amb. Bolten who get’s the gig!

    • Speaking of ON THE GRID: Reports of CNN showing 30 minutes of P0RN yesterday..really! A distraction?!! WOW
      NO WONDER there was no sight of any liberals commenting here yesterday??!!!

      • Haaaaaaaaa! What ?Where? P0RN? on CNN? Oh No! Those “Lepo” buggahs!No wonder they always look so excited during their broadcast,must be watching P0RN during the commercial breaks. Haaaaaaaaaa!

      • You’re lying about this, like you lie about everything. This never happened. You are unable to be truthful.

        Maybe the NYPD confirmed to you that this happened? You lied about that before, so maybe try again?

        • @ klastri…aka kauai…aka Kurt on Kauai….
          We Won…You LOST…don’t think you’ll get over this for a long time.
          With a narcissistic idiotic mindset (proof, in your response to beachbum11 above) that you are afflicted with some kind of behavioral abnormally that only adds to your line of absurd predictions that only an not-so-normal mindset would boast of.
          Here are some of the preposterous ones that I recall within the last couple of years.

          Your dozen or so friends would challenge Officer Darren Wilson’s exoneration in the 1-Michael Brown case, infamous “Hands Up Don’t Shoot”.
          2-Brexit…the Market would CRASH.
          3-JAG retiree.
          4-Attended BLM meetings in Hawaii but couldn’t provide contact info then changed your story that it was a Seattle based BLM group.
          5-Potus GW Bush appointed you to a Federal Judgeship.
          6-Crooked Corrupt hiLIARy would win in a LANDSLIDE.

          My only question is..have you ever been HONEST to yourself?

        • nalogirl – No, it’s not. Try again. It’s one of those fake news things that the uninformed believe. It has already been debunked.

        • @ klastri aka kauai aka Kurt on Kauai… my comment is awaiting SA lib censors….in the meantime…WHAT nalogirl said!
          If you were INFORMED we wouldn’t have your sass holding up the process for crying out loud!

  • Watching the dems/libs implode, due to shocking Wikileaks doing the TRUTH reporting, and witnessing perhaps a DEM DISARRAY in a history making event like never seen before in over 100 years….200 years…is astounding!
    Enjoying this event unfold is PRICELESS!

    President TRUMP & VP Pence come Jan 20, 2017!
    #MAGA

  • Like the viral fake-news story claiming that voting machines made by companies owned by George Soros (those machines don’t exist) would be hacked to rig the election for Clinton, Stein’s claim that voting machines were hacked is being promoted by Russia Today as part of Putin’s disinformation campaign that sought to discredit the American election process (and elect Trump).

  • Stein has absolutely nothing to gain by a recount in any state, so why is she pushing so hard for the recounts? Recounts are very expensive, several million dollars each, which must be paid by the candidate who requests them. Stein has raised an incredibly large amount of money in a very short time, which raises questions about why anyone would donate money to her cause from which she gains nothing. Stein claims it is coming from a grassroots organizing effort, but is it? I am not a conspiracy theorist but I would not be surprised if Stein is acting as a surrogate for Hillary Clinton and that most of the “grassroots” money actually came from and is still coming from Clinton’s rich donors. Someone needs to follow the money and report honestly about from where it is coming.

  • Why does Stein have standing? The Green Party is not positioned to win the State. Only Hillary is. So, did Hill call Jill and say “The Clinton Foundation will send you the money…you submit the challenge so I don’t look like sore loser”.
    If Hillary was truly a good sport, she would say “Lets heal as a Nation” and object to the recount as divisive.
    But she IS a liberal.

  • Ah Jill Stein…Still on her acid trip from Woodstock.

    Lets make it fair. Let’s have a recount in some blue states too. Oh but these Trump haters would never do that. I’m curious to see how many illegals voted for Hillary. Probably more than 3 million which would take away her “popular” vote.

      • Well hello, Klastri. I won’t call you a liar for saying Trump had no chance to win. Not fair, obviously. But you must admit that if the rules were different, the candidates would have campaigned differently, and there is NO WAY to know who would have won had they both gone after a popular majority. As it is, if Hillary had won the popular vote by ten million, it’s still a moot point; and to bring it up shows a shallow rationalization.

        • It’s not shallow, since Mr. Trump and his cronies are claiming a mandate. That may make sense to people who can’t count, but it makes no sense when someone loses the popular vote.

          Without the electoral college, both candidates would have campaigned differently. There are more Democrats in the U.S. than Republicans. Facts are very stubborn.

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