Franken wins recount by 225 votes

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Image by Dan Corrigan for City Pages

If you ever thought your vote didn't count, think again. Al Franken's lead of just 225 votes over Norm Coleman was certified this afternoon by the Minnesota state Canvassing Board. The official total sort of makes Franken the winner, but it's not over yet.

Coleman's campaign said they will contest the election, leading another couple weeks of drama left to unfold. Coleman's chance of pulling this off is unlikely, analysts say, but the state won't officially seat a senator until the contests are resolved.

Get all of the details below.

The now official results are as follows:
Franken 1,212,431 votes
Coleman 1,212,206 votes

Talk about a close race.

Coleman's campaign received their biggest blow earlier this morning when the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled against his request to add more than 600 rejected absentee votes to the pile. These votes were found by the campaign and not selected by local election officials.

After the meeting, Coleman's attorney was quick to remind everyone that this race isn't over. It's actually just begun!

From the PiPress:
Following the meeting today, Coleman attorney Tony Trimble said, "This process isn't at an end. ... It is now just at the beginning. We will now contest the results. ... There can be no confidence in the current results."
Any contests filed by Coleman's campaign will prohibit Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Secretary of State Mark Ritchie from signing the election certificate, which makes the vote tally official. Coleman has a week to file any election contests.

Franken, who has largely been out of the public eye since Election Day, will be speaking in front of his home at 4 p.m. We will update Blotter as soon as we get word of his statement.

Franken's win isn't official quite yet, but the Democrats don't care. They are likely to try to seat Franken as a freshman senator this week, Congressional Quarterly says.

Jim Manley, the spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid , D-Nev., said Monday that there "likely will be an attempt to seat [Franken] this week."

A senior Democratic aide confirmed that Senate Democrats hoped to swear Franken in Tuesday, along with the rest of the freshman senators.

Manley declined to comment on why Reid would support an attempt to swear in Franken even before his election is certified by Minnesota's secretary of state and governor -- a process that will not be completed for at least seven days under state law.
And despite Coleman losing his job, at least temporarily, his workers still showed up to the office this morning. They didn't know if they were supposed to, or if they would be paid, but his offices in Minnesota and Washington, D.C. were ordered closed later in the day, the Star Tribune says.

Coleman's statement in the PiPress:
"Without question, this is a unique situation in the history of the Senate, and specifics are still being determined as to the future of the Senate office. As such, our offices will be closed pending further notice. It has always been a high priority of mine to ensure that constituent service was being handled expeditiously and efficiently. Therefore, I want to ensure that Minnesota constituents with any specific needs at this time are having their needs addressed. Minnesotans should contact Sen. (Amy) Klobuchar's office or their local representative with any new casework needs they have. During this time we will also continue working to ensure constituents with outstanding and urgent casework needs are being served appropriately and effectively."
We will have an update after 4 p.m. when Franken speaks to the media. The Uptake hopes to have a life video feed. Check it out here.

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