Democrat Mark Dayton will govern Minnesota
37 days after the election, Minnesota's gubernatorial contest is over.
By Eileen McGuire-Mahony
Minnesota's gubernatorial race had dragged on for weeks, endured court challenges, and gone through a protracted hand recount after initial results showed that Dayton, a former U.S. Senator, was ahead by less than 0.5%, the required margin to avoid a recount.
The week long recount, in which 2.1 million ballots were hand sorted under the watchful eye of observers for both campaigns, ended last week. The process moved on to haggling over disputed, or "challenged" ballots. With Dayton still leading and most of the ballot challenges his team made withdrawn, Emmer had no clear avenue to gain the several thousand votes he would have needed.
His decision means the state board of canvassers can certify the election ahead of its December 14th deadline and that the possible court battle which could have followed is off. Governor-elect Dayton will take office on January 3, 2011.