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Recount Possible in New Jersey as Former Governor Speaks Out, Candidate Says Best Legal Experts Stand Ready

  Former two-term New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie reportedly said Tuesday that the Republican Party is gearing up for a potential legal fight...

 Former two-term New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie reportedly said Tuesday that the Republican Party is gearing up for a potential legal fight in a governor’s race that was much tighter than expected.

The election results as of Friday, with an estimated over 95 percent of the ballots counted, show incumbent Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy holding a greater than 2 percentage point lead over Republican challenger Jack Ciattarelli.

The Real Clear Politics average of polls had given Murphy a 7.8 percentage point advantage heading into Tuesday’s contest, and President Joe Biden had carried the state by nearly 16 points last November, so Democrats were expecting easy re-election for the governor.

While The Associated Press has called the race for Murphy, Ciattarelli has not conceded.

On Tuesday night, Townhall political editor Guy Benson relayed that Christie said, “This is likely to be a recount race, either way. … There’s a very legitimate chance Jack could win this.”

“He’s concerned about data discrepancies in reported totals & haziness on where outstanding votes are,” Benson added.

“Per Christie, NJ/nat’l GOP is gearing up for a legal battle, if necessary. Incredibly close,” the Fox News contributor added.

“Outstanding votes appear to favor Murphy, but JC campaign thinks there’s a path. A lot of murkiness in the numbers, so hard to pin down what exactly is still out.”

In a Thursday video message posted to social media, Ciattarelli said, “There are still tens of thousands of vote-by-mail and provisional ballots yet to be counted. … No one should be declaring victory or conceding the election until every legal vote is counted.”

He expects the tallying to be completed within the next week or two.

“If necessary, any decision on a recount or audit will come at the very end of the county process, not before,” the Republican said.

Ciattarelli encouraged his supporters to not fall “victim to wild conspiracy theories or online rumors” while the process plays out.

“While consideration is paid to any and all credible reports, please don’t believe everything you see or read online,” he said.

“Know this: My team is comprised of some of the best legal and political experts in the country. I promise you, whatever the outcome, the election result will be legal and fair.”

According to the New York Post, there is no automatic recount provision in New Jersey law. While candidates or other citizens can request a recount themselves, they must pay for it. However, if any errors are found that change the election results by more than 10 votes or 10 percent of the total vote cast — whichever is greater — the requesters will be refunded.

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