A federal judge who ordered Michigan to begin its recount effectively ended it on Wednesday, tying his decision to a state court ruling that found Green Party candidate Jill Stein had no legal standing to request another look at ballots.
The ruling seals Republican Donald Trump’s narrow victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton for Michigan’s16 electoral votes.
U.S. District Judge Mark Goldsmith agreed with Republicans who argued that the three-day recount must end a day after the state appeals court dealt a blow to the effort. The court said Stein, who finished fourth in Michigan on Nov. 8, didn’t have a chance of winning even after a recount and therefore isn’t an “aggrieved” candidate.
“Because there is no basis for this court to ignore the Michigan court’s ruling and make an independent judgment regarding what the Michigan Legislature intended by the term ‘aggrieved,’ plaintiffs have not shown an entitlement to a recount.”
Overall, Trump has 306 electoral votes to Clinton’s 232, and 270 are needed to win. Electors will come together on Dec. 19 across the country to vote.