November 26th, 2008
11:48 AM ET
3 months ago

Franken Loses Crucial Ruling in Minnesota Recount

Franken is looking to include thousands of absentee ballots in the Senate race recount.
Franken is looking to include thousands of absentee ballots in the Senate race recount.

(CNN) - Minnesota's Canvassing Board voted unanimously to reject Franken's request to include thousands of absentee ballots that are not included in the recount in the Minnesota senate race between the Democratic challenger and Republican incumbent Norm Coleman.

The Canvassing Board, which oversees the recount, stressed during a hearing today, that they weren't rejecting the merits made by Franken's attorneys. The panel also indicated that the fight over the exclusion of the absentee ballots from the recount will most likely land in court. Some 12,000 absentee ballots were rejected from the initial vote count because of technicalities and errors.

Franken's campaign argued that the ballots were wrongly rejected. Coleman's team said the board doesn't have the authority to include the disputed ballots in the recount.

Earlier: Uncounted ballots deemed crucial to race's outcome


Filed under: Al Franken • Minnesota • Norm Coleman
soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. Hopeful for Tomorrow

    @Obama08 - For some people it wasn't a case of following instructions. For one person it was a case where her signature didn't match. She had a stroke between registering and voting, and was no longer able to perform her original signature. Her vote was allegedly not counted.

    November 26, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. Stacy from Loudoun County VA

    Voter suppression: When you absolutely, positively cannot win an election on your own merits, that’s our Normie.

    November 26, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  3. Ken

    Well Michael M., where was your God in heaven when he allowed you to vote for the current obscenity-in-charge twice?

    Franken is a smart person and will do well in the senate representing the people of Minn. You might not like his humor, and what he did in his old jobs, but that is your ideologic preference....and it has no bearing on his innate intelligence and ability as a senator. On the other hand, I guess you'd be pleased to continue with G. Bush's butt-kisser, the intellectually lame Coleman....but with Bush gone, who's hind-end will Coleman go looking for? Indeed, what HAS BEEN wrong with Minn. that they allowed this neo-dimwit to represent them for the past 6 years?

    November 26, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  4. john

    To y'all that say every vote should be counted – should fraudulent votes be tallied? Absentee ballots are the ones most likely to have a problem since zero oversight was given during the casting. Why anyone would support mail-in absentee ballots in the first place is beyond me. If you can't get to a polling place on election day, voting probably isn't very important to you ('specially since there is now early voting in many states)...

    November 26, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  5. Matt, MN

    Even if those voters couldn't be "bothered" to take the time to sign the outer envelope which housed their ballet? Most of these ballets were rejected because they were missing elements which are used to prevent mulitple votes (ie the Signature on the OUTER envelope).

    You can register to vote the day of the election in Minnesota; if you start accepting ballets which have no signature, or the other REQUIRED elements, it's a very slippery slope. What's to stop me or anyone else from filling out absentee ballot, "forgetting" to sign my name, and then showing up at my local polling precent to vote there as well.

    November 26, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  6. Nick

    Yes, but I heard that Franken knew that when he challenged the ballots. When it goes to court, they don't want to hear from the judge ask why didn't they challenge anything back when they could.

    November 26, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  7. Josh Maloney, Oakland, CA

    Sounds like the work of Katherine Harris.

    November 26, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  8. Jonathan

    REPUBLICANS STEALING WHAT THEY CAN!

    November 26, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  9. MATT

    Let all the votes count why exclude any votes what's the poit in having an election anyway if you don't count the votes, and I mean all the votes!

    November 26, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  10. Los

    Do you like big government, big oil, war, and voter suppression? Then come join the GOP!

    November 26, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon,

    Hey Lilarose, why should somebody be denied benefits because of how they voted. I was a proud supporter of John McCain but I respect the decision of the people. At least I have some respect for the highest office in the country. And tom, this has nothing to do with Republicans or Democrats, judges are NONPARTISAN. So if Coleman wins fair and square, so be it and vice versa.

    November 26, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  12. Singh

    Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon,

    Hey Lilarose, why should somebody be denied benefits because of how they voted. I was a proud supporter of John McCain but I respect the decision of the people. At least I have some respect for the highest office in the country. And tom, this has nothing to do with Republicans or Democrats, judges are NONPARTISAN. So if Coleman wins fair and square, so be it and vice versa.

    November 26, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  13. Los

    Also, please, if these were votes that could potentially favor Coleman, all you GOPers would be demanding that they be counted, so please cut out all the sanctimonious crap.

    November 26, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  14. Michael Furlong, Long Island, NY

    Coleman is a patriot and because of that should win.

    Franken is a commie and should lose because he hates america.

    November 26, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  15. Andrew in Dearborn MI

    Count all of the votes. It is american, it is constitutional, and it is right. Even if it means losing the election, a true leader should fight to make sure that all Americans who have cast their ballot are counted. Don't stop fighting. Don't let these un-American values suppress the votors right to have their vote count!

    November 26, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  16. Chris

    @ clifford November 26th, 2008 12:20 pm ET

    Franken had the same voter perscription that got Obama elected, young voters without a CLUE about politics!!!

    -----------
    And your age gives you a "clue" and has made future generations lifestyle better/safer??? Need I mention Social Security, N. Debt, isolated USA, the little bubble we're in, pollution in our food sources etc. etc. Typical old fart, think they know everything.

    November 26, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  17. William

    Dear "John."

    You wrote:

    "If you can't get to a polling place on election day, voting probably isn't very important to you ('specially since there is now early voting in many states)…"

    I take it you've never been in the military. Deployed folk have no other choice. I'm sure they'd rather go back to their home states to cast their ballots, but it's probably a bit difficult to run to a Minnesota (in this case) polling place from Iraq or Afghanistan and make it back in time for their patrol.

    November 26, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  18. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    GOP strategy for winning elections: suppress the vote.....failing in that, make sure not all the votes are counted.

    November 26, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  19. Helene

    Shameful. Republicans STINK.

    November 26, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  20. Turn Texas BLUE

    This is just sad for our counrtry,

    We can build a space to travel millions of miles outer space.
    We can build great machines to help out our doctors.
    We can build cars
    We can build planes
    We can build boats
    We can build the iphone
    We can build mp3 players
    We can build computers
    We can build digital cameras
    We can build fax machines
    We can build Xboxes 1, 2, 3
    We can build DS video games

    BUT WE CANT BUILD A SYSTEM TO ENSURE THAT EVERY VOTE IS COUNTED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 26, 2008 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  21. Murdoc

    These ballots are being thrown out because they were improperly filed out or because they were suspiciously marked. As someone who voted absentee in Minnesota for this election, I can tell you that it's incredibly easy to fill one out properly and it would also be incredibly easy to fake one as well. The canvasing board was right to toss them out.

    Also, to the partisan tools who are insisting that the Republicans are stealing the election, cheating, etc.: the canvasing board is comprised of members of both major parties and is run by DFLer Mark Ritchie. There's no way that the Republicans could steal this election because they're not in the position to do so.

    November 26, 2008 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  22. earle,florida

    Absentee bailouts again? Wow, we are fast approaching/mirroring 3rd world/communist countries corrupt behavior!

    November 26, 2008 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  23. GWB2012

    Yeah, THE DIRTY DEMS HAVE BEEN TRYING TO STEAL THE VOTES ALL OVER THE COUNTRY! HOW SAD IS THAT? NOBODY WANTS AL FRANKENSTEIN JUST BECAUSE HE'S A WASHED UP NO GOOD BUM FROM SNL! SORRY! SAME THING IN OHIO – MARY JO KILROY TRYING TO STEAL VOTES FROM STEVE STIVERS. GIVE IT UP. YOU ALREADY BOUGHT YOUR WAY INTO THE WHITE HOUSE – WE DON'T WANT ANY MORE DIRTY DEMS!!!!!!!!!

    November 26, 2008 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  24. J.Crobuzon

    They're desperate down in Georgia too, ready to say or do anything to save their last few Senate seats, even gritting their teeth and pretending Saxby Chambliss is a functional senator. Throwing out votes is the way they elected Curious George, remember, and it may work again; if not, there's always Caribou Barbie!
    Minnesota, scrub that floor. Ecch.

    November 26, 2008 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  25. JR

    I am an Independent and both candidates SUCK....

    November 26, 2008 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
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