Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Expediency, It's What's For Breakfast After the Democrat Takes the Vote Lead


Time Magazine wants to remind us that despite years of demanding every vote be counted for Democrats, it has suddenly discovered that Minnesotans have had enough of this vote counting nonsense, and we must now quickly move on and declare Al Franken the winner.

Tom Scanlon surveys the scene from the bar he owns, just across a recycling plant on the industrial outskirts of St. Paul Minnesota. "You just get used to it," he says. But he's not really talking about the state's notoriously long and rigid winters. Scanlon, 63, breaks into a laugh with a slightly Irish lilt. He's talking about the unending Senatorial contest the state is going through. "It just keeps going on and going on." Indeed, in this northern state, patience is not a virtue — it's a necessity. Minnesotans, nevertheless, long for warmer weather, and one clearly identifiable junior U.S. Senator. "I think [Republican incumbent Norm] Coleman should just resign," Scanlon adds.

I'm sure that there are plenty of bars and people tending them in Minnesota, but Time Magazine just so happened to find the one guy that thinks Coleman should resign to resolve all this. Did anyone care to ask him about the two month recount that Mr. Franken demanded?

Two months after Election Day, Minnesota's State Canvassing Board certified the election results of the state's protracted U.S. Senate race Monday, declaring former comedian and Democratic challenger Al Franken the winner by 225 votes. Franken made an acceptance speech just hours after the Board met and the certification of the race's results put a temporary stamp on the two-month recount. Franken, however, doesn't yet have the election certificate needed to take his seat in Washington; and a lawsuit filed by Coleman threatens to entangle the race in even more months of legal wrangling.

That Norm Coleman, he is a "threatening" guy. By the way, we will let you know twice in a paragraph that this thing has been going on for two months already. It might go on even longer if that darn Norm Coleman exercises his rights, I mean "threatens" us all with a court challenge. I'd love to hear which definition of threaten we are using here that makes sense.

By state law, a candidate has a calendar week to contest the results of a recount to a three-judge panel appointed by the chief justice of the state's Supreme Court. Coleman, who initially led the race by 215 votes on Election Day, filed suit the very next day.

By state law.... wait I thought this was a threat. I never knew that following the legally established procedure was a threat until now.

Moreover, Coleman alleges 150 ballots were counted twice and that the State Canvassing Board incorrectly included 133 ballots that had gone missing in a Minneapolis precinct. "[Coleman's] legal theory is fine, he just has to have the facts to support it," says Guy-Uriel Charles, a University of Minnesota law school professor who specializes in election law. "I think this contest is going to be an uphill battle for Coleman."

Did you think it would be uphill before or after donating to Democrats this last cycle Prof. Charles?

The quote is curious because of the strange twist it places on the Coleman position. It states that the arguments are sound, but attempts to cast doubt anyway.

Minnesotans across the state, from bartenders to farmers, say they are growing tired of the endless election, of watching a decision purportedly of the people turn into a legal free-for-all among high-powered politicians,lawyers and judges. "The politicians are going to decide it, the lawyers are going to decide it," says Dan Solem, 44, a trucker from Minneapolis who voted for Independence Party candidate Dean Barkley. "It's kind of a joke." Added Sarah MyTych, 21, a student at the University of Minnesota while stacking books a library at the University. "It just all seems like such a circus."

Time found two more testimonials from folks who now believe Coleman should just toss in the towel.

But Coleman supporters remain steadfast that their candidate should contest the results. As they and Coleman argue, it's the legitimacy of the election that matters, not how fast it's completed.

Isn't it amazing that Time can find and quote three people who think this election should be over but cannot quote one person who thinks it should continue? It lists the position of the generic "Coleman supporters" but can't find anyone to personify that argument.

When reporters mentioned the names of Senate Majority leader Harry Reid and Franken, Coleman's crowd hissed, jeered and booed. As Coleman left the room, the supporters chanted "keep on fighting, keep on fighting."

Look an unruly mob lead by that man who keeps "threatening" us with following the established and legal procedure. They jeer and boo but apparently can't say a single word worthy of being quoted by a Time reporter.

When asked about Coleman's argument that all of those improperly rejected absentee ballots should be counted, Solem, the trucker says, "Well I guess they should count those. But it'd be nice if they just got this done and over with."

This "independent" person doesn't want the lawyers, judges and politicians to decide this but "guesses" they should go ahead and count those absentees ballots. Let us not forget that now that Franken has the lead, it would be really nice to get this all over with very quickly.

Minnesotans, it appears, will just have to endure this recount like another bad winter.

They already endured the recount. How many stories did Time run in the last two months noting how Franken was torturing, threatening, forcing these folks to endure a "bad winter" of counting votes? No bias to see here folks. Just quotable, donating Democrats and faceless jeering, booing and of course "threatening" Republicans.