In the first day of Norm Coleman's election trial to overturn Al Franken's lead, his legal team hit its first snag. This could be a long trial.
Coleman's team had planned to use photocopies of absentee ballot envelopes in their case this week, but the three-judge panel ruled they wanted to see the actual envelopes if they were to be used as legitimate evidence.
Now the campaign must get the physical envelopes before that part of their case can continue. Cue the scrambling.
Pennington County Assistant Chief Judge Kurt Marben, who presided Monday, said he was surprised the Coleman camp would have such issues with its evidence.
Those copies had markings the Coleman campaign put on them and some notes from election judges redacted, making them, the panel ruled, a poor facsimile of the original.
"If I look at these exhibits, how do I know what was put on there by the voter ... or the election judge or someone else?" Hennepin County Assistant Chief Judge Denise Reilly asked Gloria Sonnen, a Coleman witness brought to the stand to verify the copies.
"Without the original to look at, it is difficult to know," said Sonnen, an attorney at Dorsey & Whitney.The Coleman campaign now how to subpoena 87 counties across the state to get the originals. The campaign had planned on continuing their argument today, but now has no set plan for their second day of trial.
What will happen today? The suspense is killing us.