Rules for recounts in presidential battleground states

Disha Raychaudhuri
·3-min read
FILE PHOTO: 2020 U.S. presidential election in Arizona
FILE PHOTO: 2020 U.S. presidential election in Arizona

By Disha Raychaudhuri

(Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump's campaign has called for a recount in Wisconsin, filed lawsuits to stop vote counting in Michigan and Pennsylvania, and asked a judge in Georgia to order late-arriving ballots to be separated and secured so that they cannot be counted.

Below is a roundup of recount laws in some battleground states:

ARIZONA

Automatic recount: Yes

Recount law: A recount is triggered when the margin of victory between two candidates is less than or equal to 0.1 percentage points.

Deadline: There is no set deadline for completion of a recount.

Who pays: Depending on the race, automatic recounts are paid for by the state, county or town.

GEORGIA

Automatic recount: No

Recount law: A candidate can request a recount if the margin of victory is less than or equal to 0.5 percentage point.

Deadline: A recount must be requested within two business days after results have been certified.

Who pays: State law does not specify who is responsible for recount costs.

MICHIGAN

Automatic recount: Yes

Recount law: A recount is required if the margin of victory is less than or equal to 2,000 votes.

Deadline: Request for a recount should be made within 48 hours of the vote canvass.

Who pays: The candidate requesting the recount.

NEVADA

Automatic recount: No

Recount law: A candidate who has been defeated can request a recount, regardless of the margin of victory.

Deadline: A recount must be requested within three business days after the state's vote canvass.

Who pays: The candidate asking for the recount.

NORTH CAROLINA

Automatic recount: Yes

Recount law: A recount can be initiated if the margin of victory is less than or equal to 1 percent point.

Deadline: For offices governed by the state board of election, the deadline to request a recount is 12 p.m. on the second business day after the vote canvass. For offices governed by a county board of elections, the deadline is 5 p.m. on the first business day after the canvass.

Who pays: State law does not specify who pays.

PENNSYLVANIA

Automatic recount: Yes

Recount law: A recount is automatic if the margin of victory is less than or equal to 0.5 percentage point. Two other avenues for requesting recounts include requiring at least three voter signatures that attest to an error in the vote tally, and going to state court to file petitions alleging fraud and error.

Deadline: By 5 p.m. on the second Thursday following the election, for automatic recounts. If a recount is requested, the deadline is five days after the election.

Who pays: The candidate requesting the recount.

WISCONSIN

Automatic recount: No

Recount law: A full or partial recount can be requested if the margin of victory is less than or equal to 1 percentage point.

Deadline: For presidential elections, the request must be made by 5 p.m. on the first business day after the state's vote canvass.

Who pays: The candidate requesting the recount, if the margin is more than 0.25 percentage point of the total vote.

(Reporting by Disha Raychaudhuri; Editing by Noeleen Walder and Peter Cooney)