Minn. Supreme Court Rules Franken cannot yet be seated
The Minnesota Supreme Court ruled in a 5-0 decision that Al Franken cannot be certified as the winner of the U.S. Senate election until all legal challenges in state courts have been resolved, the Star Tribune reported.
Although Franken's legal team had argued that a 225-vote margin over Norm Coleman should be enough for him to receive an election certificate, but Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Secretary of State Mark Ritchie had said it could not be issued until the end of legal proceedings, the Pioneer Press reported.
In a 5-0 opinion, the Supreme Court cited state law prohibiting issue of an election certificate until the legal cases have been concluded in state courts. The Court also cited federal law that does not require certification by the time the term begins in January. The Court said that the Senate could not seat Franken without certification, either, the Star Tribune reported.
On Friday, Franken's attorneys argued in the case over absentee ballots that Coleman's team had not presented enough evidence to warrant consideration of enough ballots to make up the 225-vote margin, the Pioneer Press reported.
The three-judge panel is expected decide soon about a motion to dismiss part or all of Coleman's case to consider more absentee ballots, the Pioneer Press reported.