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Washington Matters

Scandal Brewing In Minnesota Senate Race?

It's early yet, but we may have a winner in the most unexpected ethnic group to influence a major election category of the Election '08 awards. The winner is ...

Somali refugees turned U.S. citizens. A news report from WCCO-TV in Minneapolis says there are allegations that a translator for Somali voters was actually an employee of GOP Sen. Norm Coleman's campaign, and that while speaking to them in Somalian he was encouraging them to vote for Coleman.There also are suggestions that Democrat Al Franken's campaign was misusing Somali translators, so this could become a first-class mess -- just what is needed in a race where an official recount will occur because Coleman's winning margin was less than 500  votes out of nearly 2.9 million cast.

Minnesota became a popular destination for Somalis who fled war and famine in their homeland in the 1990s. The state is home to the largest number of Somali immigrants in the country.