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US Judge Rejects Green Party's Pennsylvania Recount Case

PHILADELPHIA (KDKA) - A Federal court judge found that Green Party candidate Jill Stein's worries about hacking into Pennsylvania's voting machines "borders on the irrational." and added that there was no reason to recount the state's presidential vote or re-examine voting machines.

"The problem here was that there was never any evidence, said Republican election lawyer Heather Heidelbaugh on Monday.

"She said she just wanted to reexamine the software.  She just wanted to see if something perhaps had gone wrong.  In any lawsuit, you can't just file a lawsuit to see what's going on."

Heidelbaugh's opinion was shared by Democratic election lawyer Cliff Levine who said a recount would not have reversed Donald Trump's win of the state over Hillary Clinton.

"He [the judge] didn't feel there was evidence that you were going to change the outcome, and I think that's the bottom line here," Levine told KDKA political editor Jon Delano.

"If somebody had come back and said, this is a very close vote and we are showing something really suspicious, some breakdown in the system, and there just wasn't evidence of that."

This election may finally be over. Some 137 million Americans voted for president, and Clinton won the popular vote by 2.8 million votes.

But in the end, none of that matters.

It all came down to three states -- Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, and the decision by the court not to recount ballots in Pennsylvania means that Trump has won the Electoral College vote.

Trump carried Pennsylvania by 44,000 votes out of 6 million cast, close but greater than the 0.5 percent margin that triggers an automatic recount.

"Close is 10 or 100 or 1000, not 44,000," says Heidelbaugh.

In his 31-page opinion, Judge Paul Diamond found at least six reasons to toss out the Green Party's attempt to seek a statewide recount of the presidential vote, but "most importantly, there is not credible evidence that any 'hack' occurred and compelling evidence that Pennsylvania's voting system was not in any way compromised," wrote the judge.

Heidelbaugh said Stein's petition was strange from the get-go.

"Jill Stein filing this was odd on a recount basis for votes, and then what was also odd was that she had absolutely no basis that any of the machines were malfunctioning, and so she was thrown out of court multiple times."

In the end, this election came down to just 82,000 votes in three states:  27,000 votes in Wisconsin, 11,000 votes in Michigan, and here in Pennsylvania 44,000 separated the two candidates out of 6 million votes cast.

The decision by the court here in Pennsylvania means that Trump has won the three most important states he needed to win, and he will be the next president.

Levine, while unhappy with the vote for Trump, says Pennsylvania's voting system worked.

"It's very important to respect that process. I think it's very important.  And talk of the election being unfair, being rigged, I think people should have confidence in the system."

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