Day 2 of recount brings progress, changes for counties

Posted at 4:01 PM, Dec 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-02 20:03:32-05

Day two of the presidential recount proceeded in all 72 counties despite a federal lawsuit filed to halt the efforts. 

A new day brought changes for many counties, some switching counting methods, others gaining or losing ground on the deadline. 

Racine County counters found themselves battling the clock. Clerk Wendy Christensen said they didn’t start the actual recount process until Friday morning. 

"I’d like to be a little further along in the process,” she said. 

Racine County fired up their optical scanners to do most of the counting on Friday. Observers like Wendy McCalvy watched their every move. 

"I’m tired of hearing people saying, 'oh you know there’s a lot of things going wrong in our voting,' and I don’t believe that’s true so we’re just going to prove it,” she said.  

Waukesha County faced similar struggles on the first day. Their counting didn’t begin until Thursday night, however, County Clerk Kathleen Novack said they’ve rebounded since.

"We’re right on schedule from what I initially projected,” Novack said. 

As of Friday afternoon, tabulators made their way through around five municipalities with very few variations. 

"I’d say maybe out of the ones we’ve done, we have a plus one on one reporting unit, maybe minus two,” Novack said.

Kenosha County is one of around thirty counties across the state taking the old school approach by counting their 77,000 ballots exclusively by hand.  

"Busy hand count, busy work, no time to talk,” said tabulator Judy Lichter-Summers.  "We count at least four times every piece of paper verifying that we’re correct."

County Clerk Mary Schuch-Krebs said they decided on the hand count method when they first heard about the recount. 

"I felt it was a good way to assure the voters that our machines are 100-percent accurate,” Schuch-Krebs said. 

Walworth County is following neighboring Kenosha County’s lead, changing methods from machine to a hand recount. Recount leaders believe the hand recount will speed up the process compared to entering ballots one-by-one into machines. 
"We’ll see how that goes, I don’t know which one is quicker yet, so we’ll know at the end of today,” said Michael Cotter of Walworth County. 
Despite uncertainty looming, recount workers and observers believe the December 12 deadline will be met. 

“It seems to me that everyone’s really committed to do whatever it takes to meet the deadlines,” said Green Party observer Amber Cleveland.