Coleman Beats Franken by 762 Votes

Dem demands a recount in Minnesota's squeaker Senate race
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 5, 2008 7:22 AM CST
Rudy Giuliani campaigns for Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., Monday, Nov. 3, 2008 in St. Paul, Minn. Coleman has been reelected by a margin of 762 votes, says the AP.   (AP Photo/Jim Mone)
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(Newser) – Norm Coleman has defeated Al Franken in one of Minnesota's tightest Senate elections ever, declares the AP. The GOP incumbent led by 762 votes out of nearly 2.9 million cast. Coleman had 42.03%, Franken 42%, and third-party candidate Dean Barley 15%. But the former comedian has not conceded and is demanding a recount, which will be triggered automatically by Minnesota state law.

"This has been a long campaign, but it is going to be a little longer before we have a winner," Franken said at a rally. Exit polls showed that Franken held a big lead in Minneapolis and St. Paul, while Coleman ran stronger in Twin Cities suburbs and western Minnesota. The Senate race was one of the ugliest of the campaign, with the rivals trading accusations of corruption and immorality.