Franken attorney Marc Elias made the case to reporters Monday that as many as 1,000 absentee ballots were improperly disqualified and that the Senate or the courts may need to step in to resolve the issue.What a terrible precedent that would create for a majority party in the Senate to reject a decision made by a bipartisan board from the state in question. I wouldn't put it past Al Franken and Harry Reid to endorse such win-at-all costs tactics, but they should beware the ugly precedent they would be creating.
“No recount can be considered accurate or complete until all the ballots cast by lawful voters are counted,” Elias said of the recount that became necessary when only about 200 votes separated the two candidates on Nov. 4.
Minnesota's Board of Canvassers ruled last Wednesday that it would not revisit the improperly disqualified ballots. The bipartisan board ruled unanimously that it did not have the authority to order that the ballots be reviewed and counted.
Elias said that of the 12,000 disqualified absentee ballots in the race, “as many as 1,000” ballots were improperly excluded, and should be counted. He added that the campaign would appeal to the Board of Canvassers, courts or the U.S. Senate to ensure those ballots are counted. Last week, Elias had indicated that the campaign would not directly appeal the board’s ruling.
The U.S. Constitution allows each congressional chamber to be the "Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members."
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) called the Board of Canvassers’ decision to not count the absentee ballots “a cause for great concern” last week, fueling speculation that the Senate would explore the legality of the Minnesota recount’s results.
Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Now that the Minnesota recount seems to be winding down with decreasing hope of Franken pulling it out, Al Franken is starting to bare a new tactic of hoping his Democratic pals in the Senate would overturn the results. Since the Constitution gives each house in Congress the final power to judge elections and the qualifications of their members, the Senate Democrats could refuse to accept Minnesota's recount without the absentee ballots that a bi-partisan panel of judges has rejected. Franken's lawyer and Harry Reid are starting to make noises about endorsing such a tactic.