After the counting is over, the ballots or photographs of at least of the disputed ballots should be assessible to the public. I'm sure a lot of political scientists will also want to study the ballots.
In this election cycle, statistical probability suggests that Franken should close the gap on Coleman or even overtake Coleman. That's because first time voters and minorities are more prone to over or under vote. Also, Democratic voters are more likely to be forced to vote provisionally. Thus, my guess that to make the number of challenged approximately equal, Coleman is making more frivolous challenges than Franken.
On the other hand, Coleman may gain on absentee ballots because ballots from elderly people are disapportionately rejected because signatures of older people change over time. In this election, older people voted disapportionately Republican.
Could you cite a reference or provide a link to the procedural rules in deciding a tied senate race? Because I didn't know that a senate race declared a tie was decided by a senate vote. I always thought that there would be a coin toss to decide the race if the race was declared to be a tie.
I remember a long time ago (probably a congressional race) one candidate won on the regular count and the other candidate won on the recount. But the margins were so close that the race was decided by a coin toss. As I remember, the Republican won the coin toss.
With the nation facing it's greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression, Obama had to get this Secretary of State story behind us. The world is beginning to lose patience over the Secretary of Treasury nomination. Any more delays and people will begin to lose confidence that Obama has the skill to deal with the economy. It's good that he apparently has chosen a Secretary of Treasurer.
The gap continues to close. But on the down side, 56 percent of the precincts have been counted and Franken has challenged 901 ballots to Colemans 416 ballots. Thus, Coleman has a lot more potential to gain on the challenges.
The credit crunch just hasn't made chapter 11 bankruptcy feasible in the last couple of months. If one or more auto companies files for bankruptcy. Look out, its Great Depression II or what I call the W Depression.
Economists estimate that three million workers will be out of work if one of the big three goes bankrupt. How big the ripple effects will be is unknown, but we could see 15-20 percent unemployment rates before we recover from the W Depression. Not only will union jobs be destroyed. But wages for non-union jobs will plummet because of greater unemployment in the industry and the fact that union contracts do influence non-union contracts.
Another Great Depression is very possible. Republicans want to create a Depression because they think that will pave the way for Sarah Palin to become president in 2012. On the other hand, some Democrats may think that we should let as much of the disaster occur before January 20th. The political incentive for creating a second Great Depression is high.
Universal Health Care is Kennedy's big ambition. Clinton is a strong supporter and would put pressure on Obama to make health care reform the top priority next to solving the current economic crisis. Thus, my guess is that Kennedy wants to keep Clinton in the senate. While Obama agrees with the concept of universal health care, it is not his top priority; energy independence is Obama's top priority other than the immediate economic crisis.
But money is a big problem. The last Bush budget for the 2008-2009 year will probably be over a trillion dollars. This is simply incredible and unbelievable. Fifty years from now, historians will be amazed on how incompetent the Bush Administration was.
If Obama is a successful and popular president in 2016, Clinton would have an opportunity to run again. In 2016, if times are good, voters may look to a candidate who symbolizes continuity instead of change, and that could serve Clinton well. I think remaining in the senate is probably a better platform for a 2016 run rather than being Secretary of State for a few years and then to leave the public stage. It would probably be better for Clinton to become Secretary of State in an Obama second term rather than first term if she wants to become secretary of state and run for the presidency again.
However, I think Obama needs to pick one strong woman to lead a cabinet position. (And I don't mean a deputy position or second in command position) After not considering Clinton for the vice presidency after he said he would, Obama would be in an akward position if he could not offer Clinton the job due to problems with Bill, especially if there were no women in his cabinet.
Ted Kennedy has offered Clinton to head a task force to reform the nation's health care system. I predict that Clinton will take the offer and not become Secretary of State. The Clintons would pay a high price for her becoming Secretary of State. Secretary of States can be fired by the president anytime and most only last for one presidential term. Bill would also have quit many of his charitable work activities.
Obama is intriqued by Lincoln's team of rivals. Lincoln even picked a Democrat to be vice president. Unfortunately, when Lincoln was assassinated, his team of rivals was the new governmnent.
Bush failed to lead on 9-11-01. He lied to go to war, botched up Katrina, and botched just about everything else. Fortunately, Bush will finally be gone on January 20th. One more year of Bush and I don't think the world would exist.
The Democrats followed Obama's wishes. This may be a sign that Obama has some clout and may be able to unite the Democrats in the upcoming battles, something that Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton had trouble doing.