The Coleman campaign is scheduled to rest their case today in the election trial, and they’re ending on a high note by pointing to what they say is the uncertainty of this whole result, due to clerical errors in the election system, even going so far as to blame “corruption” — of computer data, that is.
This morning, state elections director Gary Poser revealed on the stand that over the past weekend he looked further into the workings of the Secretary of State’s voter-registration database — at the request of the Coleman campaign, after the Franken camp used the database to demolish a whole bunch of rejected ballots that Coleman wanted. And Poser discovered that there can be clerical errors in that very database, relating to when and how people registered, leading to arguments over whether we definitively know in a few cases whether someone was properly registered or even if their vote was counted.
During the lunch-hour press conference Coleman legal spokesman Ben Ginsberg said you can’t tell the outcome of this election: “But the problem is it’s tough to have faith in — it’s impossible to have faith now in what those numbers are, given the sort of systemic corruption of the Secretary of State’s database.”When a reporter asked for further clarification, Ginsberg made it clear that he did not mean there was foul play. “I’m not implying any personal corruption to anybody,” Ginsberg said. “Corrupted data — I’m told it’s a computer term.”
The Coleman campaign has been building up to a position that the court won’t be able to certify anybody as the legal winner of the most votes, and Norm himself has floated the idea of holding a new election. The clerical errors in the state’s database is now just one more piece of ammo.
By the way, it is a legitimate point that an election can be so close that we can’t know who really won. But Team Coleman seem to have discovered this principle at a very interesting moment, just as it’s become clearer and clearer that they can’t win through normal means. And this is especially interesting, considering that Ginsberg was on George W. Bush’s legal team for the 2000 Florida mess.
(Ginsberg presser c/o The Uptake.)