Franken ready to rest case

March 10, 2009 at 9:03 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn., March 10 (UPI) -- Attorneys for Democrat Al Franken say they will rest their case provisionally Wednesday in his U.S. Senate recount contest with Republican Norm Coleman.

Coleman, who held the Minnesota seat the past six years, had rested his side of the case last week, provisionally as well.

Franken attorney Marc Elias said Tuesday the Democratic candidate's team believes it has done enough to prove the validity of rejected absentee ballots it wants to see counted.

"We think that after seven weeks of trial we are in a position to rest," Elias said.

Coleman had held a 215-vote edge after the initial count of the Nov. 4 election ballots. Franken, however, took a 225-vote lead after the official recount, prompting Coleman to proceed to the current court contest with absentee and other contested ballots key to both sides' cases. An appeal to the state Supreme Court is still possible by either side once the three-judge panel rules.

Franken, who was in Washington Tuesday to bring Democratic senators up to speed on his situation, said he sees "a light at the end of the tunnel."

"I believe that we're going to win the election contest, and after that Senator Coleman can choose to do what he wants," Franken said.

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