Humorist Al Franken could finally breathe a sigh of relief after securing election to the U.S Senate by only 312 votes. In what Franken termed a "gracious phone call," former Senator Norm Coleman told Franken that he would not appeal Tuesday’s unanimous Minnesota Supreme Court decision. The concession came after a lengthy recount and legal battle that swung the vote totals back and forth. Coleman was ahead by 206 votes shortly after Election Day, almost eight full months ago, but the recount steadily favored Franken.
Governor Tim Pawlenty and the Minnesota Secretary of State promptly signed the election certificate, so it’s off to Washington for Mr. Franken! Senator-elect Franken, expected to be sworn in after the July 4th holiday, faces the immense responsibility of representing Minnesotans in the U.S. Senate. He also has a lot of learning and catching up to do, as the most Junior of 100 Senators.
Minnesotans – who have gone with just a single Senator for half the year, can also breathe a sigh of relief. We will finally have Two Senators again, as promised in the U.S. Constitution.
Minnesota – and other states – would do well to look again at their election laws with an eye toward streamlining the recount process. After the mess of the Bush v. Gore 200 presidential election, Minnesotans were proud – perhaps too proud – of our election laws. After all, hadn’t we learned from the 4-1/2 month recount in our 1962 governor’s race? Didn’t we just need a little fine-tuning after what we saw in Florida in 2000?
And yet, Minnesotans spent the last half year only half represented in the United States Senate, which is totally unacceptable. There must be a better way! 4-1/2 months was unnacceptable in 1962, so why should 8 months be acceptable in 2009? And that’s without any Federal appeal!
I suppose the governemnt will want 100% of our taxes in 2009. No 50% or even 25% discount for underrepresented Minnesotans, of that we can be sure!
Taxation without representation…. where have I heard that before?
As a partner with Bradshaw & Bryant, Joe Crumley has over 20 years experience with the firm—helping injured people and their families to secure just and fair compensation. Excelling in personal injury litigation, Mr. Crumley has secured numerous record-setting verdicts and settlements and won accolades such as MTLA’s “Trial Lawyer of the Year” and “Excellence” Awards.