GOP senator wants possibility for runoff election

Ira Stafford
A crowded Minneapolis polling place on Election Day.
MPR Photo/Bill Alkofer

(AP) - Statewide recounts would be done by machine with a possibility for a runoff election under a new bill proposed by a Republican state senator.

Sen. Mike Jungbauer, R-East Bethel, says the legislation addresses some of the issues that have come up in the Senate race between Republican Norm Coleman and Democrat Al Franken.

Instead of a close statewide race triggering an automatic hand recount, ballots would be counted again using the optical scan machines.

And if the recount overturns the results from Election Day and the difference between the vote totals is less than one-half of one percent, then a runoff election would be held.

Jungbauer says his bill would also make sure only the votes cast and counted on Election Day would be part of the recount.

Coleman finished ahead of Franken on Election Day, but Franken was ahead of Coleman by 225 votes after the recount. The race is now tied up in court.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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