Seat Senator Franken, Minnesotans Say

Al Franken has won the Senate race in Minnesota, but for Norm Coleman spending Republican money to appeal. Now a poll shows that Minnesotans want the race over and a Senator representing them now. Senator Franken. Pawlenty is running more of a political risk here than he thinks.


Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

The poll is from Public Policy Polling and shows overwhelming support by Minnesotans for Norm Coleman conceding the election and for Governor Tim Pawlenty certifying Al Franken as winner of the Senate race. Here’s a bit about the poll from Public Policy Polling’s web site:

63% of voters in the state think that Coleman should just concede the race himself. That
includes almost all of Franken and Dean Barkley’s supporters, as well as a third of
respondents who voted for Coleman last fall.

59% express support both for Pawlenty certifying Franken as the winner and for Franken
being seated immediately.

While Democrats and Republicans predictably have different views about the various
issues related to resolving the election, it’s notable that independent voters fall on
Franken’s side with 61% thinking Coleman should concede and 54% saying Franken
should be certified and seated.

“With the ruling of the three judge panel it appears that most Minnesota voters are now
ready for this election be over,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling.
“Folks seem to think that Franken is the rightful winner and that he should be allowed to
take his seat instead of the process being dragged out further.”

Yes, there will be risks for both Coleman and Pawlenty if they keep the appeals going. Pawlenty, of course, could certify the results while allowing Norm Coleman to keep his farce going, but I expect Pawlenty to keep supporting Coleman so he can appeal to the GOP base in three years. Sure, it might actually help Pawlenty win the Republican nomination for President, but it might also cost him the vote from Minnesota. What chance would he have in 2012 if he couldn’t carry his home state?

As to the poll, it is also interesting that there’s little difference in opinion along racial or gender lines. This might be partisan, but it isn’[t breaking divisively in other ways.

Thursday, April 16th, 2009 by Steven Reynolds |

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