Recount recap: Coleman down 70; Franken down 27

The second day of the recount is starting today, so here is what you missed yesterday. At the end of the day, Norm Coleman was down 70 and Al Franken was down 27. That gives Franken a net gain over Coleman.

Franken's representatives challenged 106 ballots and Coleman's camp challenged 115, according to the Pioneer Press.

In the first day, about 15 percent of the ballots were counted.

To see the daily updates, check out the Minnesota Secretary of State site. Read some FiveThirtyEight analysis here.

Photo courtesy of MPR

Are you wondering what ballots the campaign is challenging? Check out this great little Minnesota Public Radio poll that shows some of the confusing ballots that were challenged yesterday.

In other Coleman/Franken news: Washington D.C.'s conservative rag, Washington Times, speculates that Coleman could be the Republican National Committee chairman:

But a Republican colleague of Mr. Coleman's on Wednesday floated his name as a potential chairman of the Republican National Committee.

"Somebody like Norm Coleman would be great," said the senator, speaking to a small group of reporters at a Capitol Hill steakhouse on the condition of anonymity.

Franken's visit to the Capitol yesterday gained a lot of attention. He continued to assure everyone he was not there for orientation.

According to the New York Times:

He traveled to Washington for meetings with Senate leaders, including Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, Charles E. Schumer of New York and the woman who may (or may not) be his future colleague, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.

According to a spokesman for the Franken campaign, the Democratic candidate gave the senators an update on the recount process and they briefed him on the party's legislative agenda. When he emerged from one of his meetings on Capitol Hill he reportedly said that he was "cautiously optimistic" about his chances.

Red State says that means Franken thinks he is screwed:

In Al Franken's 2005 book, "The Truth (With Jokes)", Franken aptly defines the term "cautiously optimistic" with this blurb:

Cautiously optimistic? That's not good. That's an optimist's way of saying, "We're screwed." I've instructed my wife that if a doctor ever tells her that he's "cautiously optimistic" about my test results, she is to pull the plug immediately. (Source: "The Truth (With Jokes)", p. 12)

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