Attorneys for Democrat Mark Dayton are skeptical that Governor Pawlenty can stay in office after his term ends on January third. They say they’re looking at possible legal avenues to get Dayton seated after the state canvassing board certifies an expected recount on December 14th. Dayton attorney Charlie Nauen says the state constitution says a governor’s term runs “four years and until a successor is chosen and qualified” which he thinks will occur if Dayton wins the recount.
“The constitution says that the new governor, if you will, goes into office if that person has been “chosen and qualified,” Nauen said. “On December 14th, we’ll see what the numbers are, but if the numbers show that Mark Dayton has more votes, he’s been chosen, certainly by the people, and he’s qualified.”
Pawlenty has said he will stay on as governor if a governor isn’t prepared to take office. Both Emmer and the Chairman of the Republican Party of Minnesota says they have no intention of filing a legal challenge just to delay the matter. They say they want their concerns over possible voting irregularities cleared up. Democrats worry Emmer may drag the race into court to keep Dayton from taking office.
Meanwhile the MNGOP has filed lawsuits against elections officials in St. Louis and Pine Counties for failing to produce their data practices requests in a timely manner. You can those suits here and here.