December 18th, 2008
07:38 PM ET
14 years ago

MN high court rules on some rejected ballots

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota (CNN) - Minnesota's Supreme Court Thursday barred officials from including rejected absentee ballots in the recount of the state's hotly contested U.S. Senate race unless both of the candidates and elections officials agree the ballot was improperly rejected.

Incumbent Republican Sen. Norm Coleman and former Air America talk show host Al Franken are caught up in a fiercely fought battle over the recount of ballots from the November 4 election.

Coleman had filed suit to stop the recount of thousands of rejected absentee ballots until a "uniform" process for reviewing the ballots can be devised.

Instead of halting the recount, the court ruled that local elections officials "lack the statutory authority to count" rejected ballots on their own but can do so if they and the candidates all agree that a ballot was rejected in error.

Updated 7:38 p.m.

soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Rob Redmond

    If you ever thought that politicians were really interested in "serving" their countries, you thought wrong.

    Just have the votes come in too close to call, and rather than volunteer to step down and serve in the other's panel of advisors as a helper, they will immediately spend tax payer money to fight for the power and glory they crave.

    Folks, humble people don't run for office. Ever. Only ambitious, power-hungry people run for office. Only such people could succeed in such a job, too, because the influence peddling necessary to accomplish anything is beyond the abilities of a principled man.

    December 18, 2008 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  2. David

    This kind of doesn't matter since the Democrats will still be short of 60 senators and the winner will get voted out in 2018 anyways. They should of done a runoff instead of a recount seeing as how the third party got 14% of the vote.

    Coleman and Franken could settle this with a game of Russian Routlette for all I care.

    December 18, 2008 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  3. Brad

    This ought to be amusing. Might as well get Don King involved because this fight will be worthy of Pay Per View.

    December 18, 2008 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  4. Well Well Well

    A nonsensical ruling that does nothing but complicate the recount and provide further grist for the mill of appeals.

    December 18, 2008 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  5. Kevin in MN

    There will be pressure on both camps to be reasonable. I believe the properly cast absentee ballots will get counted and Franken will win. I don't like either of them so I don't have a dog in this hunt but I am getting pretty sick of Coleman and his tactics. Let's count all of the validly cast ballots and let the chips fall where they may. If Franken is the winner, I believe he will be the Senator with the least seniority in the Senate.

    December 18, 2008 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  6. SteveJ - Seattle

    Franken might not need any of the absentee ballots in question anyway since he's already projected to be ahead by 50-90 votes after the recount is done at the end of the month.

    I wonder if that happens, if Coleman will concede like he said Franken should if Coleman is ahead after the official recount is done??? I kinda doubt it.

    December 19, 2008 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
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