January 5th, 2009
01:06 PM ET
12 years ago

Coleman court request denied

Minnesota's high court denied Sen. Norm Coleman's campaign request to consider rejected ballots.

Minnesota's high court denied Sen. Norm Coleman's campaign request to consider rejected ballots.

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota (CNN) - In a move that leaves a post-election legal challenge the last remaining hope for Republican Sen. Norm Coleman, Minnesota's high court has denied his campaign's request to consider about 650 additional rejected absentee ballots his attorneys claimed should have been included in the count of mistakenly rejected ballots that were tallied this weekend.

The Coleman campaign had contended there was no uniform standard for local officials and campaigns to review and tabulate these improperly rejected ballots. The court had previously ordered that only ballots local officials and both campaigns could agree were rejected in error could be counted. A consensus was met on about 950 of 1,350 originally found by local officials.

The court order suggested Coleman's latest request should be a post-election consideration.

The Coleman camp said it was determined to take the question to court. "Today’s ruling, which effectively disregards the votes of hundreds of Minnesotans, ensures that an election contest is now inevitable,” said Coleman attorney Fritz Knaak. “The Coleman campaign has consistently and continually fought to have every validly cast vote counted, and for the integrity of Minnesota’s election system, we will not stop now. The Minnesota Supreme Court has made sure that an election contest will need to be filed quickly in order to ensure that an accurate and valid recount can be achieved.”

Minnesota's state canvassing board is expected to name Democrat Al Franken the winner of the recount later Monday. Franken now leads Coleman by a margin of 225 votes.

soundoff (149 Responses)
  1. AndyB

    Sorry Norm no gravy train for you, looks like you may have to work for a living. ha ha ha

    January 5, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  2. David

    Boy, does this whole thing reek. Something is just not right with this mess. There looks to be some fraud by both sides. Power corrupts.

    January 5, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  3. Polar Bears Against Palen

    Now that being a Republcian is no longer useful to Coleman, maybe he will switch back to being a Democrat. This bandwagon rider is as phony as a 2 dollar bill.

    January 5, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  4. Oh Please!!

    Thats right , Dems only want all votes counted if it benefits them. Hypocrites as usual. Thats ok though, because they can't handle power. They are already imploding. The Republicans won't have to get their act together because the Dems are so crooked they will oust themselves. Bush will be gone and the Dems will be without their favorite excuse to lean on. Franken is an idiot . He will implode too. Oh boy, this is going to be fun to watch. He He He....

    January 5, 2009 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  5. Diane

    Funny...in 2000, Republicans were outraged that en election could go to the courts. A travesty, they said. Let the process run its course, they said. Don't sully the election with court battles, they said. Hmmmm, it seems the shoe is on the other foot now, and thay don't like it. NOW they think the courts should decide. Can't have it both ways, guys. Y'all lost. Give it up and move on!!

    January 5, 2009 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  6. Debbie

    Turnabout's fair play, GOP. Don't choke on it.

    January 5, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  7. Rick

    Let's publish the names of all 654 disenfranchised voters and allow them to sue Franken for the right to be counted.

    January 5, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  8. Rick in WA

    Coleman owes it to the people who voted for him to root out any Democrat voting irregularities.

    January 5, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  9. obama-mama

    Count Dracula just need to thrown in the towel. It's over.

    January 5, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  10. MD

    I hope Minnesota can just move on. It's not like there haven't been other actors or TV personalities in office before. I'm thinking Al Franken will make as good a Senator as Jesse Venture made Govenor... 🙂

    January 5, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  11. Cynthia

    This is a sad day in MN politics. My vote is being diminished! Coleman you better fight this to the bitter end. Do not let this go!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 5, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  12. forrest kimbrough

    way to go al franken..now we have a senator with a higher I Q than bush ,cheney and palin and mc cain combined

    January 5, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  13. CA Indie for Obama

    Mike, Syracuse, NY
    were you so vehement about Ohio vote counting in '04?? After all, there were several precincts where bush received more votes than registered voters.
    Just asking.

    I think the better question is WHY were those ballots rejected in the first place.

    January 5, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  14. TexAnnie *-*-*-*-*

    It appears Coleman only wants to count the ballots he thinks might be in his favor. Maybe this is pay back time for the Republicans for the travesty of the Florida and Ohio election counts in 2000 & 2004???

    January 5, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  15. flybyshoeing

    I don't know if Franken will be good or not, but Coleman should just accept this and move on. He will be plenty busy defending himself in court soon enough.

    January 5, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  16. Mike

    This guy looks dead and the embalming fluid failed.

    January 5, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  17. Ana

    Funny, in 2000 and 2004, Democrats cried "Every vote counts!"

    Tell that to the 650 people whose votes were relegated to the scrap heap by a Minnesota court.

    January 5, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  18. Bell

    I find it so very hard to believe that people really want rotten mouth Frankin to represent this state.

    January 5, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  19. Ken

    @Mike, Syracuse NY: Under the rules of consensus, agreed to by both campaigns, all the valid votes WERE counted. Your buddy Norm is trying to change the rules he had already agreed to. But I can see why you agree with Norm: changing the rules, and playing by your own set, has worked well for you hypocritically self-labled "contructionists".....including the FLA 2000 debacle where the [R] Supreme Court conveniently ruled for the [R] presidential candidate that citizens have no standing in court to sue to have their votes counted, let alone counted uniformly (which is the complaint du jour from Norman's camp). So Norm and YOU are hoisted on your own pitards....and I dance a joyful and smug jig to both of your political corpses!!

    January 5, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  20. Dog

    Mike from NY: You got now clue. Coleman lost a lot of support in Minnesota due to how he handled the recount which was showed a total lack of respect for democracy.

    January 5, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  21. Bob

    In any election, if a recount produces a final tally greater than 10 votes, then there is something inherently wrong with the way votes are collected and tallied. Regardless of who is seated, someone needs to review thier procedures. This should have been decided Nov 4th with no questions.

    As an American, I am disheartened. As a Taxpayer, I am outraged !

    January 5, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  22. John, Rochester MN

    Mike, Syracuse NY January 5th, 2009 1:33 pm ET

    OK Dems, let's hear your outrage on not counting all the votes? Oh, I guess that only applies if your guy is behind, huh?
    --------------------------------
    Have you not been paying attention? Franken has been saying this whole time that we should count all the votes. The ones not being counted here are ones that come from Coleman-leaning districts. The rules were set a while ago, stating that improperly rejected ballots would be counted if both parties and the board agree they should be counted. These 650 are only wanted by Coleman.
    Also...

    Kenneth January 5th, 2009 2:38 pm ET

    Count all the votes and let the chips fall where they may but in my opinion neither of these gentlemen should be afforded a voice in the Senate.
    -------------------------------
    They counted the votes, the chips fell, and we want Franken in there. So, we in MN don't get a voice because you don't like how things went? Grow up.

    January 5, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  23. he needs to know when he has lost

    enough, now it is time for your trial

    January 5, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  24. sean burns

    "Democratic voting irregularities"? Coleman ALLEGEDLY won the election at first, didn't he? And now, after a meticulous hand recount observed by both parties, and close scrutiny of all the ballots, FRANKEN has more votes. So that indicates REPUBLICAN IRREGULARITIES in the INITIAL tally. But after the microscope and bright lights were put on this contest, it looks like this is one the Republican cheaters won't be able to steal.

    January 5, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  25. Florida Joe

    Seems like the night of the election, Coleman said that to drag this on would be bad for the voters......Now that he lost, he wants to DRAG IT OUT further........Funny how his perspective changed when he was the one that lost.................Typical

    January 5, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
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