MN-Sen: Pawlenty Lets His Slip Show
It was quite fun watching Joe Scarborough jump off the Good Ship Norm Coleman this morning. And I agree that the lack of any statement from the top Republican campaign arm in the Senate or the RNC is quite telling. But ultimately, the conservative movement has shown no ability to be swayed by the media or public opinion, and I'm confident that they will continue to obstruct for obstruction's sake:
For weeks, Pawlenty has said he would take direction from the courts, but is now suggesting that he could wait beyond the conclusion of state appeals if the case heads to federal court.
"I don't know whether [the certificate] would be required to be issued. I think it could be issued at that time," said Pawlenty. "I'm not saying I wouldn't issue the certificate. I'm just saying we should have all of the facts in front of us before we precommit to something like that." [...]
For his part, Pawlenty said the loser may decide against appealing in federal court. But if an appeal is filed, Pawlenty said he may wait to see how the courts handle Coleman's argument that there was not a uniform standard used to count the votes.
"I also would want to look at what the courts did with the case in terms of leaving issues for potential appeal, the strength of those issues, how directly and effectively they addressed them," said Pawlenty. "I'm not saying that I'm going to, or not going to, issue the certificate at that point. I just want to make sure I have all the facts in front of me before I made a decision like that."
"With all due respect to Gov. Pawlenty, it's not his job or his role to try to second-guess or Monday-morning quarterback the State Supreme Court," said Marc Elias, an attorney for Democrat Al Franken.
Pawlenty can issue the election certificate as soon as the Minnesota Supreme Court rules on the appeal (which I'm sure Coleman will wait the full 10 days to file). He's threatening here to drag it out as Coleman tries his luck in the federal courts. And even if he goes ahead and signs the certificate, the obstructionist caucus in the Senate will probably filibuster Franken's seating. If that doesn't argue for fundamental change in the Senate rules, nothing will.
...in a conference call, the Coleman campaign affirmed that they will appeal, but of course they haven't filed the appeal and will probably wait the full 10 days to drag it out. BECAUSE THAT'S THEIR ENTIRE M.O.