Counties must finish sorting wrongly rejected ballots todayby Mark Zdechlik, Minnesota Public Radio
Friday is the deadline for local election officials to submit wrongly rejected absentee ballots to the Secretary of State's office in the U.S. Senate recount.
The Coleman campaign, however, is seeking a court order changing the process to determine which rejected ballots should included.
St. Paul, Minn. — Under an order from the Minnesota Supreme Court, county elections officials were to identify wrongly rejected absentee ballots and get those that both of the campaigns agree should have have been counted, to the Secretary of State's office by the end of the day Friday.
The Secretary of State's office planned to count those ballots Saturday with an eye toward wrapping up the recount early next week. But the Coleman campaign filed an 11th hour petition with the high court alleging inconsistencies with the process.
The Coleman campaign wants the court to change the procedure so that any ballot either of the campaigns or election officials want considered would be looked at under a process administered by the Secretary of State's Office rather than local officials.
Franken campaign spokesman Andy Barr called the Coleman campaign's petition "desperate."
"The Coleman campaign seems to be remarkably fond of do-overs," Barr said. "They object to things. They stamp their feet when they don't get their way and in if the process doesn't seem to look like they're going to end up pulling victory from the jaws of defeat, they go to court and try to do it over."
Coleman's attorney says the current process of identifying wrongly rejected absentees is riddled with inconsistencies and will result in an invalid count.
Earlier this week the State Canvassing Board wrapped up the recount and ballot challenges giving Franken a 49-vote lead over Coleman.
It's unclear when the Minnesota Supreme Court will rule on the Coleman filing.