Ann Coulter

What is the point of having a hand recount of ballots in the Minnesota Senate race if the Democratic secretary of state is going to use the election night totals in precincts where it will benefit Democrat Al Franken?

Either the hand recount produces a better, more accurate count, or there was no point to the state spending roughly $100,000 to conduct the hand recount in the first place.

But that is exactly what the George Soros-supported secretary of state has agreed to do in the case of a Dinkytown precinct near the University of Minnesota. The hand recount of the liberal precinct produced 133 fewer ballots than the original count on election night and, more important, 46 fewer votes for Franken.

So he's proposing to defer to the election night total over the recount tally.

There are no "missing" ballots in Dinkytown. Ballots were run through the voting machines twice on election night. Last week, Minneapolis elections director Cindy Reichert explained they already knew for a fact that 129 ballots had been run through machines twice on election night, which pretty closely matched the 133 allegedly "missing" ballots.

As Reichert said, "There are human errors that are made on Election Day." According to an article in the Dec. 2, 2008, St. Paul Pioneer Press, Reichert was "confident that that's what happened" and that "we have all the ballot envelopes here."

But after relentless badgering by the Franken campaign, now Reichert isn't so sure anymore. So the new plan is for Minneapolis to submit both the election night total from Dinkytown -- which gives Franken an extra 46 votes -- and the meticulous hand recount total, which does not, and allow the canvassing board to decide which to use.

The 129 ballots that Reichert said were run through the machines twice on election night could end up being counted twice.

In all other precincts, the initial tallies from election night are treated as highly unreliable rough approximations of the actual vote, while the results from the hand recount are regarded as the absolute truth.

Only in the Dinkytown precinct, where the election night total gave Franken an additional 46 votes, does the state treat the hand recount as an error-prone joke compared to the highly accurate election night vote.

The Soros-supported Secretary of State Mark Ritchie explains that there is "precedent" for counting election night totals rather than the recount totals. If so, how about using the election night tally from some of the precincts that gave Coleman more votes on election night?

Highly implausible, post-election "corrections" in just three Democratic precincts -- Two Harbors, Mountain Iron and Partridge Township -- cost Coleman 446 votes. But I note that Ritchie doesn't propose deferring to the election night totals there.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune attributed the 436-vote "correction" in Franken's favor to "exhausted county officials." Were they more exhausted in those three precincts than in Dinkytown?

Either the post-election tally is better than the election night tally or it isn't. Cherry-picking only those election night results Ritchie likes isn't an attempt to get an accurate vote-count; it's an attempt to get a Democrat in the U.S. Senate.

If Minnesota is going to accept the election night tally from Dinkytown, why not from any of these precincts where Coleman lost votes under far more suspicious circumstances? And why are guys named "Al" always caught trying to steal elections?

Wholly apart from the outrageous inconsistency of deciding that some election night tallies trump the hand recount and some don't, Franken's miraculous acquisition of more than 500 votes from heavily Democratic precincts in post-election "corrections" wasn't believable on its face -- and that's even accounting for the fact that Franken voters tend to be stupider than average and therefore more likely to fill out their ballots incorrectly.

Corrections in all other 2008 races combined led to only 482 changes in the entire state of Minnesota. The idea that typo "corrections" in one single contest from only three precincts, out of more than 4,000 precincts, could lead to 436 "corrections" benefiting Franken is manifestly absurd.

Ritchie's proposal to accept the election night count from one precinct is a stunning admission that even he doesn't believe a hand recount is any more accurate than the original election night tally.

To be sure, endlessly recounting ballots doesn't yield more accurate results, it just creates different results. There is no reason to think a tabulation is more accurate because it occurred later in time.

But then why have a recount at all? If the state of Minnesota is going to spend $100,000 and endless man-hours to conduct a meticulous hand recount on the grounds that it is more accurate, the state ought to at least pretend to believe in its own recount.

Election recounts are never intended to get more accurate results. They are simply opportunities for Democrats to manufacture new votes and steal elections.

And once again, Republicans are asleep at the wheel while another close election is being openly stolen by the man whose contributions to western civilization include the "Planet of The Enormous Hooters" sketch on "SNL."