Coleman dealt another blow in fight against Franken

Republican Norm Coleman (left) and Democrat Al Franken.

The Associated Press
Published: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 1:11 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 1:11 p.m.

ST. PAUL, Minn. The Minnesota Supreme Court has rejected Republican Norm Coleman's request to count an additional 650 rejected absentee ballots in the state's U.S. Senate recount.

The court's ruling Monday likely paves the way for the state Canvassing Board to certify results showing Democrat Al Franken won the race. But Coleman's attorneys have said they are likely to sue if he loses the recount, meaning it could be weeks more before the outcome is final.

Coleman had argued the ballots were improperly rejected. In a five-page ruling, the high court said the dispute was among issues better handled in an "election contest," or lawsuit.

Franken leads Coleman by 225 votes after the state finished counting more than 900 absentee ballots that the state and the campaigns earlier had agreed were improperly rejected.

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