Minnesota Election Contest Ends
Contrary to all expectations, the election contest in Minnesota actually ended.
The lawyers for both sides said everything they had to say. It's over. Well, the
trial part is over, anyway. In his closing arguments, Republican Norm Coleman's lawyer
the judges to set aside the law and use common sense in making a decision.
This is a dead giveaway that he knows he has lost. Judges are not supposed to set aside the law
and use their own judgment--and in the few cases they do, they make a real effort to show how
their decision was forced because the law in question was in conflict with some other law.
That is not the case here.
But Democrat Al Franken is not out of the woods yet. If Coleman loses, he will surely
appeal to the Minnesota state Supreme Court, and if he loses there, to the U.S. Supreme Court.
There is a fairly good chance that the U.S. Supreme Court won't take the case. They (in practice,
swing Justice Anthony Kennedy) don't need another Bush v. Gore case--especially one in which
a higher authority (the U.S. Senate) could embarrass them by overruling them. The most likely
outcome of an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court is a statement that this is a matter of state
law and it should be handled by the state courts. The only thing that is certain is that we are
in for weeks, maybe months, of uncertainty.
CQ Politics has a story
on Coleman's appeal strategy.
Perkins Won't Challenge Vitter
The president of the Family Research Council, Tony Perkins, has
not to challenge Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) in a primary in 2010.
The only other name that has come up as a possible primary challenger is porn star
Stormy Daniels, a Louisiana native. She hasn't decided if she wants to run or not,
but having celebrities run for public office isn't even unusual any more.
In fact, when porn star Mary Carey
ran for governor of California in the aftermath of Gray Davis' recall, she came in 10th out of 135 candidates.
Daniels has said she is thinking about it, not because she expects to win, but because she
wants to expose Vitter's hypocrisy--campaigning on family values
while being a good customer of the D.C. Madam, Deborah Jeane Palfrey.
Daniels has no problems with Vitter having used Palfrey's services, but his campaigning against
people who use such services is what gets her.
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