It’s over except the law suits. Al Franken has defeated Norm Coleman in the Minnesota senate race.
Norm Coleman’s term as a U.S. senator ended at noon Washington time on Saturday, and by evening his hopes of winning a second term had been dealt an expected but serious setback as state officials counted previously rejected absentee ballots in St. Paul.
DFLer Al Franken held an unofficial lead of 225 votes over Coleman, according to a newspaper tally of the officials’ count of the absentee ballots. Franken had led unofficially by 49 votes going into the day and gained a net 176 votes from the new ballots.
With the recount complete, focus immediately shifted to the Minnesota Supreme Court, which continued to consider a request from the Coleman campaign to alter the process and add more absentee ballots to be reconsidered.
Note, Minnesota law doesn’t allow the election to be certified until all legal challenges are resolved, so even though Coleman is very unlikely to prevail, Franken can’t be seated for Minnesota until the whole mess is over.