Today’s developments in the Minnesota election trial make even clearer the extent to which the Coleman team are casting doubt on the whole election result — indeed, they’re using the sort of language that could lead one to believe they’ll try for a do-over.
At Coleman lawyer/spokesman Ben Ginsberg’s post-court press conference today (c/o The Uptake), unveiled this new line: “You saw today in the testimony of Scott and Carver counties, why Al Franken’s current lead — and I use that term euphemistically — is based on illegal votes.”
Ginsberg also said that the variation across the state in how absentee ballots were screened for acceptance or rejection made this “a fatally-flawed election.”The Coleman legal team used this afternoon’s examination of two county election managers, Kendra Olson of Carver County and Mary Kay Kes of Scott County, to explore their this-whole-election-is-a-disaster gambit again. Olson testified that she tried to be forgiving with some of the rules for accepting or rejecting absentee ballots — but not all.
Meanwhile, Scott County elections manager Mary Kay Kes said her county didn’t even check on a particular voter error that led Olson to keep out 181 ballots — what the Coleman camp claims is an inconsistency in treating ballots that rises to being a Constitutional violation.
Thus, Ginsberg said, there are votes already in the system that under the court’s recent ruling — which forbade Coleman from asking for some ballots to be counted — are to be considered invalidly cast.
So the Coleman camp appears to be setting up a choice for this court or any future appeals: Either count all these rejected ballots, under Coleman’s novel Equal Protection claim, or we’ll insist that this whole election was illegal and demand a mulligan.
Come to think of it, they could still claim that the election was illegal if those ballots are all counted, and Norm is behind.
(By the way, here’s a fun fact: Carver County, which has supposedly given Al Franken all these illegal votes, actually voted for Norm Coleman by 55%-29%, and Scott went for Coleman by 51%-31%. Even taking into account Franken’s statewide lead in absentee ballots, Coleman could have won them here.)