The Minnesota recount is going along pretty smoothly considering everything, and routine small problems are being routinely corrected. But in this freakishly close race, every vote is important, and a lot of people are getting unduly excited. The Star Tribune’s headline (“Minnesota’s vote: Cast into doubt”) is entirely wrongheaded, and unfortunately it encourages the Republican goons — for example, Sarah Janacek:
Coleman supporters say their man won on Nov. 4, is still winning and will be certified as the winner: “If that gets refuted, then the whole system will be throw into chaos,” said Sarah Janecek, a Republican strategist. “So far, at the grocery store and gas station, everyone is very tired of the whole thing, but there’s a basic sense that, yep, we had an election and we had a recount and the result was the same, so the system must work.” (Star-Tribune, December 14, 2008)
Coleman did not win on election day, because his margin then threw the race into automatic recount. No one wins until Friday when the recount (hopefully) will be finished.
Janacek knows that, but she doesn’t care. She’s setting up the “stolen election” meme, and she’s threatening chaos if the recount doesn’t match the election day count. But that’s what recounts are for — to check the original count to see if it was correct. Recounts are meaningless if you insist that they don’t change anything.
Here’s the kind of thing we’ll be dealing with:
How to steal a senate seat
By Richard Baehr
The Minnesota senate race is being stolen as you read this. Rejected absentee ballots may be counted at discretion of counties. Which ones do you think will find more to count? There is no uniform standard for determining which once rejected absentee ballots should now be counted — just as with Florida in 2000 (basis for Bush v Gore decision in U S Supreme Court). My guess is that Minneapolis/St. Paul and Duluth/Iron Range areas will decide on acceptable ballots. Coleman’s lead may well disappear. (Read more)
They’re absolutely convinced that Franken is committing fraud even though they have no accurate information about the recount (and not even very much inaccurate information). Furthermore, they seem completely unfamiliar with the idea that when you accuse someone of a crime, you have to provide evidence that a crime was actually committed — more than once they ask me to prove that there was no crime. Finally when I persist in asking that same obvious question, they declare me a troll and stop responding.
At the moment I’d say that Franken has a 50-50 chance. He’s only 190-odd votes behind, and some signs are pointing his way. If he does win the recount, we should prepare ourselves for a flood of enraged screams, and we have to give tit for tat and push back hard. We can’t let them intimidate the ref this time.