For anyone who's ever wondered if their vote really matters, look no farther than state Rep. Mary Franson's razor's edge win over Democratic challenger Bob Cuniff Tuesday night.
A single vote separates the two, triggering an automatic recount after the state canvassing board meets on Nov. 27.
The board will also be conducting a recount in Senate District 20, where Democrat Kevin Dahle eked out an 82-vote win over Republican Michael Dudley in the open Northfield-area seat. State election law triggers an automatic recount in races that are decided by less than one-half of 1 percent of the vote.
"This race is not over," Cuniff tweeted to supporters in the early hours of Wednesday. "Thanks for your support and prayers."
A one-vote victory is still "absolutely" a victory, an exhausted Franson noted Wednesday. As for the close race, she said she and Cuniff are neighbors, competing for the votes of people they both know. Franson, a freshman who attracted headlines and criticism for some of her controversial statements, also said state Democratic party had targeted her district with outside money and negative ads.
In the end, she said, "people know where I stand on the issues. They may not agree with, but they know my values and beliefs," she said.
If she wins the recount, Franson's second term in the Legislature will be very different than her first.
"That's something I'm still trying to wrap my head around," she said.
The canvassing board will meet at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27 to set a location for the legislative recounts. The recount should be completed within the next several days.
"Minnesotans are anxious to know who will represent them, but they also want to be sure that all ballots are properly counted," Secretary of State Mark Ritchie said in a statement Wednesday. "This office, working together with our county partners and the candidates, will complete any recounts as quickly as possible after the canvassing board determines a recount is required with complete accuracy and transparency."