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Sen. Cornyn Warns of World War III

March 30, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

And it’s not related to the global financial crisis or nuclear proliferation, but to the ongoing recount for one of Minnesota’s Senate seats. Manu Raju for the Politico reports:

Texas Sen. John Cornyn is threatening “World War III” if Democrats try to seat Al Franken in the Senate before Norm Coleman can pursue his case through the federal courts.

Cornyn, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, acknowledges that a federal challenge to November’s elections could take “years” to resolve. But he’s adamant that Coleman deserves that chance — even if it means Minnesota is short a senator for the duration. […]

As Roland Burris will recall, you can’t take a seat in the Senate without an election certificate from your state. And it’s not clear whether the candidate who’s ahead after the Minnesota Supreme Court rules could get an election certificate from Minnesota if his opponent is seeking review from the United States Supreme Court or challenging the results in a new lawsuit in federal court.

Sen. Charles Schumer, the New York Democrat in charge of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, says that Minnesota gets its second senator as soon as the state case ends.

“Whatever the state Supreme Court decides, as I understand it, the law requires it to be certified,” Schumer says.

But Cornyn believes that Minnesota can’t certify Franken the winner if Coleman seeks review from the U.S. Supreme Court or files a new federal case. And Ben Ginsberg, a Coleman attorney and a central player on the Republican side in the 2000 Florida recount, says it’s “an open question” whether a federal court challenge puts a pause on the certification process.
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