Sunday, January 04, 2009

Minnesota Senate Recount -- update 9

By Michael J.W. Stickings

It's hard to believe that we're still talking about the 2008 elections, what with Obama soon to be inaugurated, an economic stimulus package on the horizon (and coming not a moment too soon), and a war ongoing in Gaza, but, alas, democracy needs to be allowed to take whatever long and majestic course it requires. And it looks like the long and not-always-majestic process in Minnesota will soon be over:

DFLer Al Franken won an impressive share Saturday of what may be the last ballots tallied in the U.S. Senate recount, boosting his unofficial lead over Sen. Norm Coleman to 225 votes heading into a Monday meeting where the state Canvassing Board will certify the final result of the race.

But -- and it's a big, huge, massive BUT:

At least two things... still stand in the way of Franken becoming Minnesota's newest U.S. senator: the possibility of a ruling by the Minnesota Supreme Court that more wrongly rejected absentee ballots should be counted, and a legal contest that Coleman attorneys all but promised should Franken prevail.

Will the courts intervene, though? Unless the recount has been conducted in some unequivocally unjust way, I doubt it. Which means that Franken -- now firmly, if extremely narrowly, ahead -- will prevail.

Even Yogi Berra, I suspect, would say that it's just about over.

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