What lesson of the 2008 recount should Minnesota remember this time?

For the second time in two years, a statewide election is so close that a recount will likely determine its outcome. Today’s Question: What lesson of the 2008 recount should Minnesota remember this time?

  • Politicizing or interfering in the process of counting the votes should be illegal.

    We should have learned from Florida and the most recent MInnesota recount that political partiies and their candidates should keep arms distance and let the process proceed without bullying and accusations that the process if flawed.

    We are already seeing this behavior from MNGOP.

  • Jon Miners

    That the recount process tends to favor Democrats, that an aggressive search for voter intent in ballots turns up more Democrat votes than Republican votes.

    And to get it done quickly.

  • Dianne

    It takes time, and everyone needs to wait for the process to finish.

  • Sue de Nim

    The question presumes that there are lessons to be learned that haven’t been already. The law was changed in response to the problems encountered in 2008. As this plays out, we’ll get to see all the new problems and unintended consequences.

  • Steve the Cynic

    We need a major reform of our electoral process, such as ranked-choice voting or some other good idea. Minnesota has a worsening case of electile dysfunction. Unlike a certain other state (not to name any names, but its abreviation stands for “Florida”), Minnesota’s problem is not with the administrative process of counting the votes, but with the fact that candidates for the most important offices usually win with mere pluralities. The result is a more polarized electorate and an erosion of trust in government. Unfortunately, such reform is unlikely, because both major parties benefit from the status quo.

  • Justin

    I think that the most important lesson to be learned from 2008 is this: If the recount takes place and it says you lost, then you lost. None of this “I think the recount was flawed because the other party is the one in charge of the recount” nonsense. The margin in this race is wide enough that there is no possibility that enough votes will swing the other way. I would still say this if Emmer was ahead. It’s time for everyone to realize that Minnesotans tend to like divided government, and that nothing “smells funny” in this race. State law mandates a recount, so let it happen. But do it without the interference from lawyers and fearmongers from either side.

  • Virginia

    I think the lesson should be not to vote for the 3rd Party, it only throughs the counts off.

  • Joanna

    I learned that we have an extraordinary spirit of civic duty in this state that has created a fair and transparent process; that good people will come together to make sure it works well, despite the carping and whining that goes on from the sidelines; that there are media sources that guarantee that the process will be open to public scrutiny; that a sense of humor really helps with the waiting (Lizard People!), and that our recount in 2008 was an example to the country of how to do it right. I will try to remember the other lesson: “keep calm and carry on.”

  • steve

    i think the 2008 recount shows that the election process is flawed and that outcomes do not come the next day, and the process is tight and exact but it is worth the cost time etc to get a fair outcome!

  • steve

    I think the process worked well. The lesson learned is while we all have our hopes on who will win a recount, Minnesotans need to treat each other fairly and with respect and not degenerate into legal manuvers and name calling. Every election seems to be a circus anymore and frankly, I just am sick and tired of politicians, postering and the media blowing everything out of proportion.

  • DNA

    The amazing results of right/wrong-left/right push-pull trance phenomenon on a mass consciousness level. Paralysis (however “temporary”).

  • Kirk

    That this repeat of sore-loosership sounds familiar:

    This from the group whose candidate (while he thought he was leading) said his opponent shoud conceed rather than cause the state the expense of a re-count, then dragged out the challenging of the clear winner when the tables had turned, thus depriving Minnesota of a Senator for months.

    Now the attempt is being made to keep the loosing party in power so that a totally one-sided government can unfairly shift the policies of the state.

    We should learn to ‘loose’ gratiously, and fairly -not fling wild accusations.

  • greg d’roseville

    that neither of the partisans in the recount should have any say in aspect of the mechanics of the ongoing recount process. in the 2008 recount – both sides attempted and were to some degree able to establish what the counting standard was, which ballots would be recounted, and have their ‘vehement” partisan representatives actually participate in the recount. All aspects of the recount should be perfomed by officials – or by “deputized” representatives ( if extra bodies are needed) whose deputization places upon them a legal burden of fairness that can be punished by misdemeanor. Seems extreme, but if these same partisans are at Polls contesting other voters ability to cast ballots – we better put them on the hook for an extra dose of responsibility to fairness when performing a recount duty.

  • greg d’roseville

    Oh and ENACT Instant run-off balloting. If Horner sucked voters from Emmer , then , while I hold my nose at his addled sense of governence, he should be the governor. Why are we paying “AGAIN” for a recount when the instant run-off could be saving countless millions.

  • glenn

    We’ve seen the process-in 2008. The largest change is in absentee ballots counted in a central place.

    Inspite of what the Political Parties say, the system works. We are fortunate voters in Minnesota!!!

  • Elizabeth T

    The effort to teach my children to be good sports when they lose is apparently doomed to failure.

    In sports (the most immediate forum for “losing” that my 6 year old has) … if you get more points, you win. You walk across the field, shake hands with the other players, and try harder next time. it sucks to lose; but sometimes you do.

    If the GOP doesn’t like the system … they just got control of the Legislature, which is the body responsible for the Law. They have the power to change the law now.

  • Paul

    One lesson: the losing party will try to drag out the court battle as long as possible in order to undermine policymaking.

    In 2008, the lack of Franken’s vote in the Senate almost certainly made the stimulus smaller than it would have been. Coleman’s court fight had implications for the national economy for the next two years.

    This time, expect Republicans to drag the fight out beyond all reason to keep Pawlenty in office into 2011.

  • Duane

    Several posters on this blog seem to think this recount is being requested by the losing party. This is incorrect! Minn law requires a recount when the vote difference is .5% of less. As of this time the vote count is withing that parameter and therefor a recount is mandated by state law.

  • kennedy

    We learned last time that the potential vote swing was several hunderd votes. Unless the voter’s ability to properly fill out a ballot degraded significantly, the margin this time appears to be significantly greater than potential questionable ballots.

  • Doug Haftings

    It’s funny that noone has talked about the fact that Tim Pawlenty only won by one percent in 2006.

    That’s 3 major elections in four years that have been won or lost by 1% or less.

    Maybe Tony Sutton should like for stronger canidates rather than looking for a conspiracy.