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Recount begins for Franson-Cunniff race (W/VIDEO)

The Douglas County Commissioners Meeting Room was buzzing with activity Wednesday morning while a recount was under way for the House District 8B race between Mary Franson and Bob Cunniff. (Echo Press photo by Al Edenloff)2 / 2

A state-ordered recount is underway for the race between Minnesota House 8B candidates, Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, and Bob Cunniff, DFL-Alexandria.

The process began in Douglas County this morning and will proceed in Otter Tail County tomorrow.

In Douglas County, the recount was moving along swiftly, according to election officials and attorneys for the candidates. They predicted that the results should be available this afternoon. Only a couple of ballots had been challenged.

After the election, Franson held a one-vote lead. It increased to 11 when 35 ballots were randomly discarded last week after over-votes were found in three Alexandria precincts.

The State Canvassing Board on Tuesday approved rules governing the House District 8B recount. The rules follow those in effect for the 2008 U.S. Senate and 2010 governor elections.

Representatives of the candidates will be allowed to challenge election officials' decisions about who should get each ballot. The state canvassing board would decide who, if anyone, receives votes from challenged ballots during its December 4 meeting.

In past recounts, a number of ballots were the subject of arguments about voter intent. Such ballots could determine the outcome of races as close as in House District 8B.

Challenged ballots will be posted on the secretary of state's Web site ( when available.

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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