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Editorial: We all wait for governor recount

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opinion Willmar, 56201
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

The word of the day for Monday is "recount," as all 87 counties in Minnesota begin recounting ballots from the Nov. 2 governor's election.

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Since Democrat Mark Dayton holds only an 8,770-vote lead over Republican Tom Emmer, the race totals fell within the 0.5 percent margin where a statewide, state-funded hand recount is mandated.

At 9 a.m. Monday, counties around the state start the process of hand-counting all 2.1 million ballots cast Nov. 2.

In Kandiyohi County alone, 17,446 ballots will be hand counted, which includes Willmar's ballots totaling about 6,000.

Ballot and recount rules have been revised since the 2008 recount in the Franken-Coleman Senate race. The new law changes include:

- Making it harder for campaigns to challenge local election officials' decisions.

- Improving and simplifying the absentee-ballot process.

Counties are scheduled to complete their recounts and report to the Secretary of State's office by Dec. 7.

The State Canvassing Board will then review challenged ballots Dec. 8-10, with the board scheduled to certify the election results by Dec. 14.

The losing candidate then will have seven days to raise any concerns in state court.

This year's recount is expected to be quicker in most locations, particularly due to the revised recount and absentee ballot rules, which have reduced rejected absentee ballots.

The candidates -- Dayton and Emmer -- will wait along with other Minnesotans over the next couple weeks for the recount process to play out.

We are all waiting for the same thing -- the voters' choice on Nov. 2 for Minnesota's next governor.

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