Posted at 2:44 AM on November 5, 2008
by Tom Scheck
Staffers for GOP Sen. Norm Coleman were just sent out to guard the ballot boxes. There is a razor thin margin between Coleman and Democrat Al Franken.
Which ballot boxes are Coleman's people guarding? Are these the precincts in Duluth that haven't reported yet?
If so, "guard" is probably a euphemism for "throw into Lake Superior," given Duluth's politics.
By the way, I remember Duluth holding out right until the end two years ago as well. Mike Hatch delayed his concession until Wednesday morning on the basis of that. Why does it take them so long to count the votes up there?
They keep running out of fingers and have to start all over again?
Coleman is the winner. The media should have called it hours ago. The votes are not there for Franken. Some precincts in Duluth are missing, but Franken is not carrying Duluth overwhelmingly. He is not leading Coleman by enough votes for the missing Duluth precincts to make a difference. Also, seven of the missing precincts are in Grand Rapids, in which the difference between the candidates might not even be 20 per precinct.
Furthermore, there are three missing precincts in Maple Grove. The surplus for Coleman there might be more than enough to offset what Franken might gain from unreported "canoe precincts."
What's with the results in Two Harbors, Ward One?
Update: The three missing precincts in Maple Grove just came in. Coleman won one by 900 votes and the second by 178. The third was smaller - 20 votes.
Coleman's lead is now 6507. The missing 20 precincts in Duluth would have to give Franken a tremendous surplus in order for him to overtake Coleman. The 16 Duluth precincts that have already reported gave Franken a net surplus of 4848. Based on the smaller total population of the missing 20 precincts, I estimate that Franken could derive a surplus of 4041 in them. That still leaves Franken about 2500 votes short.
Chris: It looks like a digit is missing from Franken's vote. If it was supposed to be 275 instead of 27, then that would mean another 248 votes for Franken.
But it might not matter. Coleman is now up 7412, and there are only 39 precincts left to report. Franken would thus need 2/3 of what is left to report. Even in his best batch of precincts tonight, he had only 61 percent.
If you look at the number of people who voted AGAINST Coleman, the real story is revealed.
Hopefully the DFL learns from this one--you need to have a candidate people want to vote for--you can't just rely on their interest in voting against someone.
Franken was a disasterous choice--even though I am a hardcore Dem, I really had trouble making myself vote FOR him.
You can bet the "unbiased" most political secretary of state we've had in a long time, Mark Ritchie, will find an additional 900 votes somewhere and steal this election.
Looks as though we lost the battle but won the war this election.