Al Franken Closes In: New Ballots Could Reduce Margin to 13
Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email.
The Franken campaign struck a tone of confidence on Tuesday, insisting that once the votes were counted the numbers will reveal that they had bested Norm Coleman in the Minnesota Senate race.
"I'm very confident that Franken is going to win," said the Democratic challenger's lawyer Marc Elias. "I think we are going to win this recount. I have no doubt in my mind that Al Franken got more votes in this election that Norm Coleman. The only question is, will Norm Coleman have lawyers continue this fight."
There was reason for the optimism. While a local newspaper has the margin by which Franken trails in the recount somewhere in the 300-vote range, the Franken campaign itself says internal figures show them to be within 50 votes.
Perhaps more importantly, on Tuesday the Secretary of State's office directed county auditors and election officials to review previously rejected absentee ballots to determine whether or not they should be counted. For weeks, the Franken camp has argued that while many of the absentee ballots had been rejected for legitimate reasons, a portion of them (ranging from 500 to 1,000) could be deemed legitimate votes.
Sam Stein is a Political Reporter at the Huffington Post, based in Washington, D.C.