comScore

It's on: Democrats sue to keep Donald Trump off Minnesota ballot

Donald Trump may get thrown off the Minnesota ballot after all. He will be missed.

Donald Trump may get thrown off the Minnesota ballot after all. He will be missed.

A few weeks ago, news broke that Donald Trump was not yet on Minnesota's 2016 election ballot. 

We learned this curious fact right around the same time as the Republican Party of Minnesota. Evidently, the party didn't act to get its presidential nominee's name on the ballot until blogger (and former RPM senior staffer) Michael Brodkorb revealed that he wasn't.

To recap: The snag came when party leaders failed to provide a list of 10 alternate electors to cast the state's electoral votes, should Trump somehow become the first Republican to win Minnesota since 1972. To rectify the situation, the GOP hastily called an executive meeting where they picked 10 activists to fill those seats.

They got their paperwork in just under the wire, and Republicans' man/dyed piece of pleather was certified as a person running for president in this state. But, as Brodkorb warned at that time, the last-minute acceptance of Trump's alternate electors was on shaky legal ground, and was ripe for a legal challenge.

Why, who'd want to go and do a thing like that?

Oh, right. Democrats.

The Minnesota DFL party filed Thursday to block Trump's being foisted upon Minnesota voters like some burnt yam dish your aunt always brings to Thanksgiving that not even the dog wants, submitting a petition to the Minnesota Supreme Court in the name of party chairman Ken Martin. 

Martin's filing argues that, by not selecting its alternates during the state Republican convention, back in May, the party skipped out on the proper method of certifying those electoral voters. By law, a convention is the only recognized forum for naming electors. 

Conventions usually take months of planning and don't come together in the span of a couple hours. Think of organizing a full wedding versus getting drunk and eloping in Las Vegas. (And then waking up married to Donald Trump.) 

Instead, the Republican executive committee met on the night of August 24, talked a bit, probably looked around sheepishly, and jotted down 10 names. That's not supposed to be how it works, says Martin, who cited "clear errors" Republicans made in a statement accompanying Thursday's petition.

“It is incumbent upon political parties to follow the rules binding our elections," Martin said, "and in this instance it does not appear that the Minnesota Republican Party did so."

If Republican chairman Keith Downey has a response, it's not ready for the public just yet; he didn't respond to phone calls or emails from the Star Tribune last night. If any public relations firm wants to figure out how to turn a grimace and a plaintive sigh into a statement, please contact the Republican Party of Minnesota directly.  

Meanwhile, if Donald Trump himself is aware of all this, of any of it, he hasn't let on. Trump never made any mention of the Minnesota ballot affair when it happened, despite the brutal way it was covered in national press.

As with so much of his campaign, this embarrassing fact seems to have evaded the man himself. Either Trump missed it or he's in denial.

If only the rest of us could pay so little mind to his campaign. Maybe we Minnesotans still can.