Norm Coleman Dealt Blow By Court, Al Franken Celebrates Decision
When will the circus end so Democratic winner Al Franken can be seated and start to do the work for the people of Minnesota? Well, tonight we are closer to the end, and even a source close to the Republican former Senator, and now poor-loser, Norm Coleman said “Its not looking good.” Well duh…you lost the election months ago! Republican Coleman knows he has nothing left of his political career, and so is trying everything in his dirty deck of cards for a trick. Thankfully the Court dealt Coleman one in the nards today.
After seven weeks of reviewing a hand recount, millions spent on legal fees and a tough legal ruling Tuesday afternoon, Norm Coleman still looks like the loser in the Minnesota Senate race.
But even as Democrat Al Franken’s campaign celebrated a three-judge panel’s decision to put at most 400 ballots back in play, the Coleman camp is still promising to take its case to the Minnesota Supreme Court. And it’s not ruling out an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court or filing a new lawsuit in federal district court.
Ben Ginsberg, a central player for George W. Bush during the 2000 Florida recount and Coleman’s lawyer, said, “If the court does not reverse its decision, it will give us no choice but to appeal that order to the Minnesota Supreme Court.”
And Ginsberg said it was “an open legal question” on whether the candidate leading after the Minnesota Supreme Court rules should be certified the winner and thus be seated in the Senate.
In its ruling Tuesday, the three-judge panel ordered absentee ballots to be turned over to the Minnesota secretary of state’s office by April 6. The ballots would then be counted in open court by April 7.
Once the ballots are counted on April 7, the court will very likely issue a final opinion, which can be appealed to the state Supreme Court within 10 days. That means Minnesota will most likely be without a second senator for at least the rest of April, a boon to the GOP, which is trying to prevent Democrats from getting their 59th seat in a chamber where 60 is king.
All told, the math really doesn’t look good for Coleman after this decision, as he would have to win an overwhelming majority of these 400 ballots in question to overcome Franken’s 225-vote lead, and not every one of these ballots will necessarily be opened and recounted.
“We are obviously pleased,” Marc Elias, chief legal counsel for Franken, said in a conference call with reporters. “Obviously, the math is going to be very difficult for former Sen. Coleman and his legal team. … We feel pretty good about where we stand, but we are going to wait until Tuesday for these ballots to be opened and counted.”