Trump election faces hurdle as Clinton pushed to challenge outcome

US President-elect Donald Trump waves after a meeting at the New York Times on Tuesday. Some scholars believe Trump did not win in the battleground states. [photo: AFP]

US President-elect Donald Trump's transition to the White House could be derailed following allegations that the election was rigged.

Several international media reported that a group of renowned computer scientists and lawyers had urged Democrat Hillary Clinton to challenge the election results in three key states after they gathered "evidence" to suggest the election results were potentially manipulated.

According to the Independent, the group of activists have evidence showing that results in those three battleground states, which Ms Clinton lost in the November 8 presidential election, may have been hacked.

The New York Magazine claimed the group, which includes lawyer John Bonifaz and Alex Halderman, a computer scientist at the University of Michigan, are not speaking on record but is privately lobbying Clinton's team to challenge the election results.

The BBC reported data experts were asking why Clinton performed worse in counties that relied on electronic voting machines compared to paper ballots and optical scanners.

It added that US activists had called for a recount in battleground states where Trump beat Clinton, fearing the ballot was skewed by foreign hackers.

Reports indicated whereas the computer scientists had found no evidence of hacking in the US electronic voting system, they argue that an independent audit is required to ascertain if indeed Trump won in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The BBC quoted the UK's Guardian newspaper reporting that now a "growing number of academics and activists" were calling for an audit of the results in states like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin,.

"I'm interested in verifying the vote," Dr Barbara Simons, an adviser to the US election assistance commission and expert on electronic voting, was quoted as saying. "We need to have post-election ballot audits."

In the event the audit proves their claim right and Clinton is declared the winner in those three states, she will have more Electoral College votes than Trump which will make her the US president-elect. Although Clinton beat Trump in the popular vote, she lost in the Electoral College votes where Trump got 290 electoral college votes, compared to Clinton's 232.

According to a CNN report, the computer scientists believe they had found evidence that vote totals in the three states could have been manipulated or hacked and presented their findings to top Clinton aides on a call last Thursday.

"The group has already held a call with Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta and campaign general counsel Marc Elias to argue that while they had not found conclusive evidence of a hack, the pattern in their results merits an independent review," said the New York Magazine.

Clinton has made no indication she would challenge the results and the White House is intent on a smooth transition.

The deadline to file for a vote recount is between tomorrow and next Wednesday for the three states. CNN added that there were widespread concerns about hacking before the hotly contested US elections, including the Obama administration accusing Russia of attempting to breach voter registration data.

"The group informed Clinton's campaign chairman that she received seven per cent fewer votes in counties that relied on electronic voting machines," the CNN reported.