Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Cornyn to Filibuster Franken

That is the news from The Hill if Senate Majority leader Harry Reid attempts to seat Al Franken sans a certificate of election especially if this is headed for the courts, which it is likely to end up there:

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) threatened Friday to filibuster any attempt to seat Democratic Minnesota Senate candidate Al Franken next week.

The newly minted National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) chairman said he had not whipped votes in the GOP caucus, but added that he could not imagine any members defecting and seating Franken without a certificate of election.

Franken will not have that certificate as long as the election is challenged in the courts — a likely scenario, with Sen. Norm Coleman’s (R-Minn.) legal team already attacking the credibility of the recount process.

“This is a very, very serious matter,” Cornyn said. “I can assure you that there will be no way that people on our side of the aisle will agree to seat any senator without a valid certificate.”

Some have suggested that Franken could be seated provisionally, which would allow for any court challenges to play out and potentially change the outcome.
But since Minnesota state law won’t provide Franken a certificate of election with an election contest pending, seating Franken could be a risky and difficult proposition.

Franken leads the race by 49 votes with all challenged ballots resolved, but Coleman’s campaign is attempting to include about 650 improperly rejected absentee ballots from areas friendly to the incumbent.

That would be on top of about 1,350 improperly rejected absentees already designated by recount officials.

Beyond that, Coleman is expected to take up a legal challenge to the result.

This is a shrewd move by Senator Cornyn. You see, Harry Reid has been bluffing over the Franken/Coleman race, and the Burris appointment by Governor Blagojevic. On the one hand, Senator Reid has stated he will seat Al Franken even while the election is being contested in court. On the other hand, Democrats have lined up claiming they will stop Roland Burris from being seated. BOTH moves are bluffs.

They cannot stop Roland Burris from being seated because that is an appointment made by the governor, and part of the governor's constitutional powers. The Illinois state legislature did not strip Governor Blagojevic of his powers, so he had the right and authority to make that appointment.

While Al Franken may lead Norm Coleman by a handful of votes, he has not won the election, nor has he been certified, and he cannot be certified so long as legal challenges continue. In other words, the moment this goes to court in Minnesota, Al Franken cannot be seated without being certified the winner, and should the courts side with Norm Coleman, Mr. Franken will watch his handful of votes disappear rather quickly.

Harry Reid is stuck between a rock and a hard place. He knows that Senator Cornyn is not playing games with his threat of a filibuster. He also knows, more than likely, that Senator Cornyn has the numbers on his side to run the filibuster against Harry Reid's ploy.



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