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Senate race lawsuits

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Three lawsuits are pending in Minnesota's prolonged U.S. Senate race. Here's a summary:

-- Norm Coleman sued to the challenge the election outcome one day after the state Canvassing Board declared that Al Franken received 225 more votes than Coleman. The lawsuit, to be heard by three judges, alleges voting irregularities on Election Day and during the statewide recount, including that some ballots were counted twice while others were excluded from the count.

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-- Franken filed a lawsuit asking the Minnesota Supreme Court to order Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Secretary of State Mark Ritchie to sign an election certificate for him. An election certificate is needed to be seated in the Senate. Pawlenty, a Republican, and Ritchie, a Democrat, refused a Franken request to sign the document before election lawsuits are resolved.

-- With the support of Franken, several dozen voters from around the state went to court because they say their absentee ballots were not counted. State law allows individual voters to challenge election results. While the case is separate from either candidate, Franken's campaign backs this filing.

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