Franken, Coleman Meet With Senate Leaders
Washington is latest stage for Minnesota combatants
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 22, 2009 1:34 PM CST
A three-judge panel listens to arguments in the Minnesota recount challenge.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – As Al Franken’s lawyers asked a Minnesota court to dismiss Norm Coleman’s challenge to election results there, both Senate hopefuls traveled to Washington today meet with party leaders, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. “The race in Minnesota is over with,” Harry Reid said after conferring with Democrat Franken about committee assignments. “Reports of my defeat are greatly exaggerated,” said Coleman after meeting with GOP senators.

Franken holds a 225-vote lead after the disputed recount, and his lawyers intend to keep it that way, calling Coleman’s challenge a “fishing expedition.” Coleman’s camp seeks a wide-ranging re-recount. Meanwhile, in DC, Reid said Senate Dems would “probably” seat Franken, though he did not say when. That would be “way out of line,” Coleman rejoined. “There's no question the votes are there to overcome a very slim lead.”