How's Al Franken's Senate bid going?

Haven’t heard much about it since a year ago. When and how will the Dem nominee be chosen? Franken’s website doesn’t seem to say.

The informal straw poll at my caucus had him 56 to 23. But nothing will be decided until the the State convention. It’s now up to the political actors in the smokey back rooms.

A poll taken before the caucuses showed Franken with a large lead over Ciresi. I suspect that will filter through the ranks and we will end up with Franken. Ciresi is spending a ton of his own money on his effort and is not going without a fight. His big selling point is that he thinks he is more electable, but I have doubts about that. A recent poll put Franken even with Coleman and for an incumbent to be at that point this early is a sign that he is in trouble.

But, one thing to keep in mind. Cirisi is the preferred candidate of the Minnesota DFL political machine. Polls and Caucus straw polls mean little right now. I just hope the political machine isn’t stupid enough to endorse against the obvious will of the people.

Not without its problems:

Oops. Well, it could be worse.

Re: paying taxes.

I don’t think this will hurt him in the long run (or even much in the short run). He didn’t fail to pay the taxes, he just paid them to the wrong state. It’s pretty clear it was a mistake (and possibly not even his) rather than an intentional act. Heck, most voters will probably sympathize.

He’s Good Enough, He’s Smart Enough, and Doggone It, People Like Him!

I’m an alternate (well, half-alternate) to the state convention. The day this broke big, his campaign handled it pretty well - they had calls going to every delegate and alternate, explaining what happened, how it happened, and discussing their concerns with them. I, personally, was not really bothered by the story - things happen (although he should have found out about it earlier in the cycle, I think).

The New York Times Magazine had acover article about five weeks ago.

Damn, I never heard about him taking down the heckler. Now I kinda respect the guy (Al Franken, not the heckler).

The DFL delegates will choose a Senate candidate at their state convention on Saturday, June 7th.

Currently, their are 2 possibilities, Al Franken & Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer. Franken has the most delegates now, but not enough to guarantee the endorsement; there are still quite a few officially uncommitted delegates.

This tax issue is unlikely to affect the delegates much. Franken’s quick response, and communication with delegates, has probably ensured that. (Franken will actually gain a few thousand dollars from this! He reported all his income in Minnesota, which is a fairly high-tax state. His refund from the overpaid Minnesota taxes will be bigger than the taxes he just paid to these other states.)

Franken has dropped in comparison to Republican Norm Coleman in the latest polls. Partly because the Republicans have decided he is likely to be the DFL candidate, and have started to target him in ads, blogs, the press, etc. But I think he is still only 7 or 8% behind Coleman – that is a very vulnerable position for a well-financed incumbent, especially a loyal Bush Republican in these times.

Right - this was supposed to be one of the most vulnerable seats, and the Dems want badly to grab it. But they chose a comedian as their candidate, and that’s what they seem to be winding up with.

Early days yet, but seven points behind in a state like MN does not bode well for the future.


As opposed to the clown that the Republicans ran in 1980?

When a professional comedian gets into politics, heckling is an unwise mode of attack. It’s like trying to pick a fistfight with Steven Seagal.

Could be better.

The important question at this point, ISTM, is how this tax business will affect Franken’s chances at the nomination. It’s the sort of thing that can be expected to die down by November; the Pubs will look silly if they try to keep it alive that long, as if that’s all they’ve got.

I assume a typo or “weeks” for “years” (unless I’m missing something?). The article says it was published in 2004.

Not paying taxes is pretty bad - not paying workers compensation seems even worse. Especially since Franken would presumably raise mandates like this on businesses through his health care policies, for instance.

If he won’t pay them, then he deserves to be called on it when he asks others to pay. And let’s also say this accounting error stuff doesn’t wash with me. A man running for Senate ought to know that people and businesses sometimes owe taxes to different states. If he doesn’t know that, he has no business even running.

Did you write this understanding that he simply didn’t pay his taxes, or understanding that he had paid his taxes, but to the wrong state? Because I believe this is a case of the latter (he may even as a result of the mistake have paid too much tax).

I agree he should have got this right, but it seems a stretch to bring up the whole “he asks others to pay, but won’t pay himself” argument given that his mistake didn’t result in him paying any less tax.

Just to add, my comments above refer to the taxes. I agree the lack of workers compensation insurance is worse, assuming that is a New York law. The campaign really ought to have known better. Still, it is something I’d forgive if I felt it was an unintentional error, but it would certainly be an issue if they made a habit of it.