Court: Trump will stay on Minnesota ballot

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Voters will see Republican Donald Trump's name on Minnesota ballots after the state Supreme Court dismissed a Democratic Party legal challenge Monday.

The Supreme Court said that the challenge came too late after the discovery of a Republican technical infraction that could have forced their nominee off the ballot. The case was filed on Thursday by Minnesota DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin and decided only a few days later, a  speedy consideration that was deemed essential because at least one million ballots with Trump's name on them had already been printed.

Chief Justice Lorie Gildea wrote for the court that the start of early voting next week makes a sudden upheaval even more problematic.

"Under these circumstances, we cannot agree with Martin that a 2-week delay was reasonable or that the prejudice that would result from that delay going forward is minimal," she wrote for the five justices who took part in the case, two short of a full panel. "We therefore conclude the petition must be dismissed."

Martin's attorneys had argued in a brief Friday that they needed about two weeks after candidate filing ended to do legal research and fact-finding.

The case centered around the selection of 10 electors and 10 alternates who could be called upon to vote for Trump if he wins Minnesota's popular vote in November. The law says they are to be chosen at the state party convention, but the alternates were picked later after Republicans realize their oversight.

With the ruling, ballot printing can proceed with voters getting nine options in the presidential races besides Trump and his main opponent, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

In a statement, Martin said he was disappointed by the legal result.

"This lawsuit was about the rule of law.  Although the Republican Party and its standard bearer, Donald Trump, frequently talk about the rule of law, they consistently apply a double standard-- making clear that everyone else should follow the rules but not them," Martin said.

A phone message with the Minnesota campaign director for Trump  wasn't immediately returned. The state GOP was assembling a statement and this post will be updated as soon as we hear from them.

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