Al Franken Enters Minn. Senate Race

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Principessa, Feb 14, 2007.

  1. Principessa

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    Franken Enters Minn. Senate Race

    By PATRICK CONDON, Associated Press Writer

    document.write(getElapsed("20070214T210539Z"));57 minutes ago

    MINNEAPOLIS - Comedian Al Franken announced Wednesday that he will run for the Senate in 2008, seeking the Democratic nomination to challenge Republican incumbent Norm Coleman.

    Franken's announcement came on the final day of his show on the liberal radio network Air America. The decision by the former "Saturday Night Live" performer instantly makes him a serious contender and brings national attention to the race.

    "Minnesotans have a right to be skeptical about whether I'm ready for this challenge, and to wonder how seriously I would take the responsibility that I'm asking you to give me," Franken said in a video on his Web site.
    "I want you to know: Nothing means more to me than making government work better for the working families of this state, and over the next 20 months, I look forward to proving to you that I take these issues seriously," Franken said.

    The decision was not unexpected. Franken announced a few weeks ago that he would leave Air America and privately told prominent Democrats about his plans to seek office.

    Franken's name is well-known and he is likely to be well-funded, but he's expected to be challenged by several other Democrats, including wealthy trial attorney Mike Ciresi.

    His candidacy will test whether Minnesotans are in the mood for another celebrity-turned-politician, after the 1999-2003 governorship of former pro wrestler Jesse Ventura. Ventura's fame and occasionally outrageous behavior regularly brought national attention to the state but wore on the patience of many Minnesotans.

    Stephen Hess, a professor of political science at George Washington University, said Franken's bid is serious. "He's not doing this as some folks have done it to give them better gigs on the Borscht circuit."
    Coleman is viewed as vulnerable after several years of Democratic resurgence in Minnesota and the unpopularity of President Bush, but his proven skills as a campaigner and fundraiser make him a formidable opponent.

    Franken, 55, was born in New York City but grew up in the Minneapolis suburb of St. Louis Park. He graduated from Harvard University in 1973, and in 1975 joined the writing staff of "Saturday Night Live" during its first season. He soon began appearing in sketches and remained a fixture on the show well into the 1990s.

    In 2005, Franken and his wife moved back to the Twin Cities, which was widely interpreted as laying the groundwork for a campaign.
    Franken planned to make his first public appearance as a candidate Thursday at a Minneapolis clinic.
    ___
    On the Net:
    Al Franken's Web site:
    http://www.alfranken.com
     
  2. submit452

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    I love SNL and I'm a big Al Franken fan (he wrote comedy for SNL). He also has a degree in poli sci from Harvard. I think there's going to be many SNL sketches in the attack ads. But we need more non politicians than either career ones or descendants of those.
     
  3. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

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    I'm not a big fan of Al Franken. If we're going to start putting liberal entertainers in office I'd much rather see Jon Stewart run.
     
  4. D_Roderick Beresford Stiffington IV

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    The man is a genius, he named his radio show the O'Franken Factor to try and get Bill O'Reiley to sue him for publicity. I hope he wins, hes a funny man who loves his country.
     
  5. B_big dirigible

    B_big dirigible New Member

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    You could say the same thing about Benito Mussolini, for all the good it did him.
     
  6. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

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    can't be all that ingenius, as this is the first I've heard of the stunt.
     
  7. B_big dirigible

    B_big dirigible New Member

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    Well, if Bill O'Reilly reads this thread, Franken is toast. So, on the off-chance, smile for the cameras, everyone.
     
  8. Principessa

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    I agree NIC, I am a BIG Jon Stewart fan. I think he is too smart to run though.



     
  9. ManiacalMadMan

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    and that is all any of this ever is at the start at least A stunt and not a very good one.
     
  10. Sklar

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    I wonder how he will spin the air america scandal?

    AIR ENRON: AL FRANKEN SPEAKS

    By Michelle Malkin • August 2, 2005 05:57 AM
    [​IMG]

    David Lombino of The New York Sun continues to move the Air America story forward. According to Lombino’s latest article, Al Franken revealed that Air America’s current owners have known about the loan from Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club for some time:
    Mr. Franken said he has learned details of the story only in the last week. He said Piquant LLC, current owner and operator of the radio network, found a record of the transfers while conducting a “forensic” investigation into the finances of the previous owner, Progress Media, which was run by [former Air America chairman Evan] Cohen. That internal probe was conducted before the city agency became involved, Mr. Franken said.​
    A spokesman for the NYC Department of Investigation, Keith Schwam, told Lombino that if Air America discovered the transfers before the city probe began, “They neglected to tell anyone at DOI or in the city about it.”
    Franken also said yesterday that “he did not know whether the hundreds of thousands of dollars apparently lent to the radio network by a Bronx social-service organization had indeed been relayed to Air America” by Cohen, who asserted that he needed money to treat a brain tumor. A Piquant spokesman said that Gloria Wise will “be compensated regardless of the amount of money it transferred.”
    So: by Franken’s own admission, Air America’s current owners have known for months that their network received a large cash infusion from Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club, a non-profit organization funded primarily by government grants. Presumably, they also knew that Gloria Wise’s director of development at the time the money was transferred was also Air America’s chairman at the time–a glaring conflict of interest. According to Franken, the owners still don’t know whether that cash was ultimately placed in Air America’s coffers or diverted somewhere else. (Franken seems to be hinting that the money was embezzled by Cohen.) Yet even as the radio network’s hosts railed on about Enron, it didn’t occur to any of Air America’s accountants, managers, or investors to mention the sketchy Gloria Wise transaction to law enforcement officials until after the city launched its investigation.
    Despite the near-total MSM blackout, this story just keeps getting more and more interesting.

    Update: Ed Morrissey notes that Franken’s statement seems to differ from the first statement issued by Air America last week:
    PIQUANT had no involvement whatsoever with funds from GLORIA WISE BOYS &GIRLS CLUB. PIQUANT neither received nor expended any of the sums that are the subject of the City’s investigation of the CLUB.​
    Update II: Gerard Van der Leun calls its Air Scamerica.
     
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