Greater Minnesota newspaper opinion on the recount: fast and nonpartisan


What are Greater Minnesota newspapers saying about the recount process? Fairly consistently, editors insist that the process work as smoothly and swfitly as possible with as little partisan bickering as possible.

The Rochester Post Bulletin’s editorial, Recount should be fast, fair and apolitical, is typical of the sentiment:

[GOP Chair Tony] Sutton should stop acting as if Dayton and the DFL are disputing the need to give the ballots a second look. They aren’t. And if Sutton is grandstanding for the cameras, he should realize that this recount won’t command the nation’s attention. The balance of power in the U.S. Senate doesn’t hang in the balance this time.

But more importantly, we ask Sutton to tone down his rhetoric because Minnesota needs this process to play out quickly and with a minimum of legal wrangling and political posturing. We need a governor, not someone who is merely keeping the seat warm while he prepares to run for president. And we certainly don’t want a situation in which legislators have an incentive to rush bills through the House and Senate in a race to get new laws signed before the next governor takes office.

There is no reason for this recount to be a drawn-out affair. We should have learned something in 2008, and there are roughly one-fourth the number of disallowed ballots this time around. When it becomes apparent that one man has an insurmountable lead, we hope that the other will have the decency to recognize the will of the voters and say “Congratulations, Mr. Governor.”

The Crookston Times opined in Do the recount swiftly and avoid a potentially nasty situation:

We can’t have a recount that dragged on as long as the Franken/Coleman recount from 2008. One would think, and hope that we learned some lessons from that one. One would also assume Minnesotans are a bit fatigued by all this. The major issue with the Franken/Coleman recount was that Minnesota was left for months with only one voice, Amy Klobuchar’s, in the U.S. Senate while Franken and Coleman’s lawyers battled it out. The collateral damage from a protracted Dayton/Emmer recount is potentially far more hurtful.

 The best way to avoid trouble is to get to work and get the job done. Recount the votes, while each side is represented by legal experts – but not a stadium full of them – and give Minnesotans the new governor they voted for, before the gavel sounds to convene the 2011 session.

In GOP should do what’s best for state, the Marshall Independent writes:

The Republican Party has every right to pursue a recount in the governor’s race, but it should also realize the kind of uphill battle it’s facing and accept the fact that Tom Emmer needs to make up almost 9,000 votes. Everything’s unofficial, of course, until the state canvassing board meets in a couple of weeks, but the GOP has to let go of what happened in the Al Franken/Norm Coleman saga of 2008 and stop comparing this year to then. GOP Chairman Tony Sutton has promised an aggressive fight, saying “We’re not going to get rolled this time.”

He also said “Something doesn’t smell right,” a reference to the Republicans’ dethroning of an 18-term Democratic member of Congress and taking control of both houses of the Legislature, while not being able to retain the governor’s seat.

Almost sounds like the GOP wants revenge for 2008. . . .

We’re hoping that if the results of the recount don’t significantly alter the outcome of the election, it will end there with the GOP congratulating Dayton so our lawmakers and our new governor can move on and take care of business in St. Paul in 2011.

The last thing this state needs is another 2008.

The Austin paper has yet another take:

A recount is not the time to support Mark Dayton or Tom Emmer for governor.

While only about 9,000 votes currently separate the two top candidates now is truly the time to prove we can set party politics aside.

If the recount for the Minnesota governor’s race ends with Emmer in the lead, Minnesotans lose.

Party politics aside, a swing of almost 9,000 votes – in either direction – would signal substantial flaws in the state’s voting system.

Minnesotans expected such flaws were a thing of the past after the 2008 Senate recount between Democrat Al Franken and Republican Norm Coleman.

As voters, we expect efficient, accurate elections – ones that are decided on the first Tuesday in November. We don’t want party lawyers duking it out into the next term.

After 2008 and the presidential recount of 2000, voters are tired of recounts. Left in limbo again, the voters are currently the losers of another election. How deep a loss is still to be determined.

Now is truly the time to depart from party support. It’s time to pay attention to our polling system, and we hope the initial results prove accurate. Not because of support for a candidate, but because we hope our system had it right the first time.

In short,  MNGOP chair and failed taco lord Tony Sutton should abandon his yearnings to become the The Lizard People of the 2010 election, and quit behaving in a way that makes Minnesota a laughing stock.