Coleman files appeal, Democrats call it "same old, same old"


Norm Coleman officially filed his appeal to the Minnesota Supreme Court late Monday and the next round of drama will pick up in May. His appeal was expected, but the official filing gets the ball rolling for a court schedule and hopes that this will be over soon.

After his announcement, Democrats came out to speak against Coleman's continued fight for a seat they don't think he can even win. Perhaps the most painful part is that the arguments aren't changing and he just keeps losing anyway.

Coleman's main points in his appeal:

  • Coleman claims that the 312-vote Franken lead is not correct because thousands of absentee votes weren't counted.
  • He believes those absentee ballots should be included because they meet the same standards as other ballots already in the final count. He says there was no solid standard across the whole state, which violates equal protection.
  • He still argues that some votes were double counted and there were 132 ballots in Minneapolis that were counted even though the physical ballots disappeared.
Check out the notice of appeal and the statement of the case, via Minnesota Public Radio (PDF).

Franken lawyer Marc Elias responds:

"They came out the other end and not only did they not prevail, but in fact Al Franken's lead grew by 87 votes. ... What we have now is the death throes of the Coleman legal effort," Elias said.
Franken's legal teams says they will file a motion today to set a Monday deadline for Coleman's brief and May 2 for Franken's. That would mean a trial date likely sometime in May.

Elias also mocked Coleman's claim that he wants to enfranchise voters, saying four out of five claims would actually disenfranchise voters:

"When it comes to disenfranchisement, no one holds a candle to the legal team assembled by Sen. Coleman."
And DSCC chairman Bob Menendez's response to the appeal:
"It is sad, but not surprising, that Norm Coleman would continue to drag this process out any longer. While it is certainly within his right to appeal, given all of the challenges facing this country right now, we'd hope that he would put the interest of Minnesotans above his own and allow all of us to move on. It is 167 days since the election - it is time for Republicans to stop holding this seat hostage as a way to obstruct President Obama's agenda. We should all let Senator-elect Franken get to work for the people who elected him. The Minnesota Supreme Court needs to be the end of the road."