pierz


MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota (CNN) — A state election board on Monday will announce Democrat Al Franken has defeated Republican incumbent Norm Coleman in Minnesota’s U.S. Senate race, state officials told CNN Sunday.

A board will say Al Franken won the U.S. Senate race by 225 votes, Minnesota's secretary of state says.

A board will say Al Franken won the U.S. Senate race by 225 votes, Minnesota’s secretary of state says.

The canvassing board on Monday will say a recount determined Franken won by 225 votes, Secretary of State Mark Ritchie told CNN.

However, Coleman’s campaign, which contends the recount should have included about 650 absentee ballots it says were improperly rejected in the initial count, has indicated it will challenge the certification.

Coleman campaign manager Cullen Sheehan said his team believes the recount process was broken and that “the numbers being reported will not be accurate or valid.”

“The effort by the Franken campaign, supported by the secretary of state, to exclude improperly rejected absentee ballots is indefensible and disenfranchises hundreds of Minnesota voters,” Sheehan said.

After the results are certified, Coleman’s campaign will have seven days to file a challenge.

The initial count from the November 4 election put Coleman, a first-term senator, 215 votes ahead of Franken — known for his stint on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” and as a former talk-show host on progressive radio network Air America.

The slim margin triggered an automatic recount.

During the recount, Franken’s campaign alleged that thousands of absentee ballots had been improperly rejected and asked that they be counted. The state’s Supreme Court eventually ordered that rejected absentee ballots be counted if local officials and each campaign could agree that the selected ballots were rejected mistakenly.

About 950 initially rejected absentee ballots were counted Saturday after all parties agreed on them. However, Coleman’s campaign said about 650 other rejected absentee ballots — many of them from pro-Coleman areas — also were improperly rejected and should have been counted.

The Coleman campaign has also alleged that more than 100 ballots may have been accidentally counted twice and may have unfairly benefited Franken.

“When a candidate is leading because of double counted votes, and votes that get counted even when ballots don’t exist, it clearly means that a [post-election challenge] is the only likely remedy to ensure a fair outcome,” Sheehan said.

Franken’s attorney, Marc Elias, in a statement said: “The next step is the canvass board’s meeting tomorrow, where we have every expectation they will declare that Al Franken won this election.”

Deputy Secretary of State Jim Gelbmann, who oversaw Saturday’s tallying of the 950 improperly rejected absentee ballots, said the only thing left for the canvassing board to do Monday is certify the numbers. The board’s meeting will convene at 2:30 p.m.

“Candidates may have objections or suggestions or comments that they want to make,” Gelbmann said. “I would assume the canvassing board will allow that as long as they’re brief.”

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York and chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, issued a statement Sunday declaring Franken the winner and expressing confidence Franken would remain on top following any legal battle.

“There is no longer any doubt who will be the next senator from Minnesota,” Schumer said. “Even if all the ballots Coleman claims were double counted or erroneously added were resolved in his favor, he still wouldn’t have enough votes to win.”

Schumer also said it is “crucial” Minnesota’s second seat in the Senate not go empty, implying Franken should be seated when the rest of the Senate convenes to be sworn in Tuesday.

Minnesota’s other seat is held by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat.

Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has pledged a GOP filibuster if the Democrat-controlled Senate attempts to seat Franken before all legal battles play out and before Minnesota’s Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a Republican, can co-sign the secretary of state’s certificate.

Ritchie said the state has no problem with not having two sworn-in senators Tuesday until the process is completed

—— Portsmouth Woman Dies from what doctors believe could be the human form of mad cow disease, autopsy to confirm.

—>Portsmouth woman may have the human form of mad cow disease.

Under pressure from lawmakers the Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a list of all schools nationwide that received beef included in last months recall.  Since the recall spanned a 2 year period, the complete list resulted in a 226 page document that named all school food authorities who received beef processed at the Westland/Hallmark slaughterhouse.

Even though there were no reported illness associated with the recall, the meat was recalled because some of the cows  processed could not stand on their own and are typically banned from the human food supply because they are more susceptible to illnesses including mad cow disease. While officials insist that the risk is very remote the incubation period for the human form of mad cow disease reportedly could be as long as long as 30 years.

Full List of School District

I’m sad to see Joyce Moran leave the Morrison County Record, sad and maybe a little dismayed. For the short time I worked at the Record Joyce was one of my supervising editors and I appreciated the qualities she brought to the Record. While my other editor was busy sanitizing everything I wrote to make local officials look good sponging out direct quotes from public meeting that he didn’t want the public to read, it was Joyce who ultimately went to bat to retain the integrity of stories that were published. 

With Joyce Moran gone maybe Tom West can just turn the paper over to the GOP make a few minor changes in their lit pieces and add his name to it …errr, or did he already do that?

Silly,

Olive Rockfish

I try to keep readers update on the developments in the Westland/ Hallmark Meats beef recall story.  Earlier today MSNBC reported that one of the workers charged with abuse plead guilty and was sentenced to six months in jail.

While all that was good and fine the story went on to report,

Downer cattle have been largely barred from the food supply since a mad cow disease scare in 2003. The cows pose a higher risk of disease, partly because they often wallow in feces. “

Downer cows have not been LARGELY BARRED, the cows this article was referring to were BANNED from the food supply.

The sentence that follows, “The cows pose a higher risk of disease, partly because they often wallow in feces”,  is even more bewildering because it has nothing to do with mad cow disease it is referring to E-coli contamination which comes from feces…. a disease not mentioned at all in this particular article. When read in the same paragraph a reader could easily conclude that feces have something to do with mad cow disease when in fact they are discussing the increased potential for E-coli contamination.

The fact that a cow can’t walk could indicate that the animal is suffering from the neurological symptoms associated with mad cow disease, but a non-ambulatory cow is also more likely to contaminate meat with E-coli because they are on the ground where cows poop. 

Side Stepping the Poo,

Olive Rockfish

San Bernardino County

By JANET ZIMMERMAN
The Press-Enterprise
From Slim Jim jerky and Jenny Craig meatloaf to Farmer John salami and Kids Cuisine frozen tacos, the list of products containing recalled meat from the now-closed Chino slaughterhouse continues to grow.

The California Department of Public Health now lists 466 types of foods sold to markets, restaurants, grocery chains, catering businesses, workplace cafeterias and other food services. The state expects the list to get longer, department spokeswoman Lea Brooks said.

“We’re identifying more products in which the recalled beef was an ingredient,” she said….–>Full Story

Business that may have used the beef

Recalled Product List

By Nicole Gaouette, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
March 13, 2008
WASHINGTON — The president of the Chino meatpacking plant that triggered the largest beef recall in U.S. history admitted Wednesday that crippled cows, which are more likely to carry disease, probably entered the food supply at his company.
“Obviously my system broke down,” said Steve Mendell, president of Westland/Hallmark Meat Co., once a major supplier to the school lunch program.Mendell initially told a House oversight subcommittee that “downer” cows at his plant “were not slaughtered, ground or sold.”But after lawmakers screened a graphic undercover video that showed ailing cows being jabbed with electric prods, beaten and rolled with forklifts toward slaughter, Mendell acknowledged that the four-minute clip did indeed show that at least two cows were processed into food.
Read the full story —> Panel Grills Packing Plant President
Again, panel members act like the problems in our food supply is new news someone should really be grilling them.
http://www.fda.gov/ora/about/enf_story/archive/2002/ch5/cvm1.htm
http://www.fda.gov/ora/about/enf_story/archive/2002/ch5/cvm1.htm
http://www.fda.gov/cvm/Sep_Oct01.htm
http://www.fda.gov/cvm/Sep_Oct.htm
http://www.fda.gov/foi/warning_letters/archive/awl2.htmhttp://www.fda.gov/foi/warning_letters/archive/awl6.htm
http://www.fda.gov/foi/warning_letters/archive/awl130.pdf
http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/news/2004/NEW01061.html
http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/enforce/2007/ENF00996.html
http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/EID/vol12no12/06-0965.htm

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