November 20th, 2008
10:04 AM ET
13 years ago

Minnesota recount resumes, Franken makes gains

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Coleman and Franken are separated by less than 200 votes."](CNN) - Vote recounting resumes Thursday in Minnesota in the battle for Norm Coleman's US Senate seat. The recount kicked off yesterday and could extend into next month.

Unofficial results from the November 4th election put Coleman, a freshman Republican senator, just 215 votes ahead of his Democratic challenger, Al Franken, known across the country from his days on Saturday Night Live and from his years as a talk show host on Air America, the progressive radio network. The slim margin for Coleman, far less than one half of one percent, triggered an automatic recount, the first time there's ever been a recount of a US senate race in Minnesota.

Now election officials, at 107 sites across Minnesota, are beginning the long process of recounting all of the ballots. They're surrounded by election observers and lawyers from both campaigns, and the media.

According to the Secretary of State's office, 15.49 percent of the more than 2.9 million votes cast in the election were recounted yesterday. It appears Franken made a dent of 43 votes into Coleman's lead of 215, according to the results posted on the Secretary of State's website. The site also reports that 115 ballots were challenged by Coleman's camp and 106 by Franken's camp.

The recount will extend well into December. The recount sites across Minnesota have a deadline of the first week of December to report their results. After that the state's canvassing board meets to rule on disputed ballots and to certify the election. And after that, if one side is not happy with the results, legal action could be possible.

Filed under: Al Franken • Norm Coleman
soundoff (168 Responses)
  1. Nancy

    Coleman looks like a manequin with those dentures in his mouth!

    November 20, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  2. Barbara

    The Democrats are not cheating. It is impossible for me to understand how the Republicans think. When the Floridians cheated in the previous election, everything was superb. They should know that following that fiasco the Democrats would be alerted to what might be going on. Al Franken is within 215 votes of Norm Coleman. He needs to check. The Republicans are known to CHEAT. Many times I have checked a news broadcast, and have asked others to give their spill on it. When the Republicans gave their spill, I wonder what did they actually hear.

    November 20, 2008 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  3. WWOD?

    Obama supporters in this thread could take a page from his campaign playbook. When being unfairly attacked, he seemed even more focused and motivated to stay the course (props to GHWB) and fight the good fight. We should be doing he same - not dropping the gloves and engaging with those of a different opinion, but focusing on the matter at hand: supporting effective change any way we can.

    There will always be contrary thinkers - it is their right. It takes a person with the courage of their convictions to not respond by reducing the dialogue to a hateful level. If we learned anything from this election, it is that when you need to resort to personal criticism, you are probably desparate...and losing.

    November 20, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  4. Hoosier Phil

    There is one contest Norm Coleman can win hands down....

    It's the "Matt Damon in 25 Years Look-Alike Contest"

    Tell him what he's won, Johnny!

    November 20, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  5. minnesota

    I actually want Franken to win; then you liberals can have the whole enchilada. If things go wrong which I am very sure they will, then you liberal clowns will own the whole complete catastrophy. No more blaming the conservatives then. We will have our crack at you clowns again as history has shown.

    November 20, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  6. DL

    Get a grip, this ISN'T representative of DEMOCRACY.

    This is THUGOCRACY at it's blatant best.

    WORSE STILL, this process of fraud remains largely UNCHALLENGED by the LESS than OBJECTIVE MEDIA.

    November 20, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  7. Jay

    Thank you, Kevin. That was the most intelligent thing I have about this fiasco since it started

    November 20, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  8. Danny in Chicago

    If Franken wins it'll be another great blow to Big Brother!

    Big Brother MUST die. We deserve our God Given Rights!!!

    November 20, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  9. Texas Trail Kitty

    Go Al. President Obama needs your support too. We've got to clean as much of the stench of the Republican Party out as possible. The more Democrats, the less foot dragging the Republicans can get away with. Of course, if their foot dragging succeeds they will then say that President Obama is ineffectual, instread of saying we're blocking his programs.

    November 20, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  10. Chris

    This race has turned into a frothy mixture of Santorum!

    November 20, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  11. DJ

    Next indictment – Al Franken for tax evasion. Should not have been eligible ro run for office.

    November 20, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  12. Valerie

    you want someone like Al Franken in the senate? the guy is a joke. and you know the Democrats are stealing the election once again. and please, Dems, get OVER Florida, you know you lost!!

    November 20, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  13. matt


    November 20, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  14. Milhouse van Houten

    This circus just may well take up enough time and resource that they
    will be able to declare a winner in time for the 2012 senate battles.

    November 20, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  15. True Blue

    Enough of Normie, And that witch Michelle Bachmann .

    November 20, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  16. Jen

    I thought Democrats were the "sensitive" and "open-minded" party. All I see is name-calling and hatefulness, the same things you jumped all over McCain for. Anyway, no one is trying to steal an election. It's just a recount, and Coleman will probably prevail. But I am seriously sick of people who get on these posts, and do nothing but spout hate. I vote Republican, and surprisingly, I am not a "hillbilly", redneck, uneducated, religiously fanatical moron. I hold nothing against Obama, I just liked McCain's policies better. There is nothing wrong with that. That is my privilege as an American. And I know that not all Democrats are tree-hugging, America-hating hippies. One of the things that makes America so great is that we can have differing beliefs and not have any repercussions for it. Alot of people seem to have forgotten that. Anyway, I'll probably get attacked left and right for those comments.

    November 20, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  17. Jean from Belgium

    Surprising: the whole world remember the stealing votes by the Replucans in 2000. And in 2004 something similar happened.
    The price has been high. The world became worse. Rep. like wars and shoot where possible a.s.a.p.!!! The world became less safer.
    Common sense, please?

    November 20, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  18. BeauMan

    Love this part of the article, "... a talk show host on Air America, the progressive radio network. " Progressive? Let's try the words "Whacked-out Liberal"! Regardless, what in the world is happening to Minnesota?

    November 20, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
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