Minn. Board: Count Wrongly Rejected Ballots

Recommendation may help Franken surpass Coleman
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 12, 2008 2:49 PM CST
Election officials and representatives for Republican Incumbent Norm Coleman and Democrat Al Franken discuss disputed ballots to wrap up the first phase of the Senate recount.   (AP Photo/Dawn Villella)
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(Newser) – In a victory for Al Franken, Minnesota officials voted unanimously today to recommend counting previously rejected absentee ballots, the Star Tribune reports. The state’s five-member Canvassing Board urged all 87 counties to count ballots that had been improperly discarded—a figure that could approach 1,600. Norm Coleman's camp is trying to block the move from taking place.

The comedian-turned-politician trails Republican incumbent Coleman by 192 votes. But inclusion of the rejected ballots, coupled with the board’s earlier decision to count 133 missing ballots from a Franken-friendly precinct, could overturn the race. “We are pleased that the state canvassing board has affirmed” that Minnesota “is not a state that disenfranchises its voters,” said Franken’s spokesman.