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Morning Fix: How Franken Won



Sen.-elect Al Franken. Photo by Eric Miller of Reuters

Senator-elect Al Franken's (D) victory over former senator Norm Coleman (R) in the Minnesota Senate race was among the closest (a 312 vote margin) and longest (it ended 238 days after election day) contests in modern political history.

How did Franken manage to wind up on top? In a race this close there are any numbers of things -- large and small -- that swayed the result. But, in conversations with strategists who were intimately involved in the campaign, the recount and the legal proceedings (whew!) a few key elements emerged.

Legal Eagles: Marc Elias, a Democratic election attorney with Perkins Coie, was on the ground in Minnesota within days of the near-tie on election day. Elias spearheaded a series of legal victories in the early days of the recount that effectively defined the universe of votes that were counted and led to Franken going from behind on election night to ahead when they recount ended. By the time Ben Ginsberg, the Republicans' election lawyer par excellence, got deeply involved, it was already too late.

An Organizational Mismatch: When Franken brought on Stephanie Shriock (and Eric Schultz) to manage the campaign in the summer of 2008, he (perhaps unknowingly) laid the groundwork for the victory he -- eventually -- scored on Tuesday. Shriock had guided Sen. Jon Tester's (D-Mont.) 2006 victory with a heavy emphasis on organization; she instituted that same mentality in Franken's campaign, building a large and aggressive machine that went into overdrive during the recount and simply outworked and outflanked the Coleman campaign. The edict from a state court that forced the two campaigns to go through each contested ballot and find an agreeable standard for counting played right into Franken's organizational strength.

It Pays To Be Ahead: When the statewide recount ended, Franken led by 225 votes. As we wrote at the time (and many times after that), it's hard to overstate how important the fact that Franken was ahead was to setting public perception regarding the legal fight that ensued. Coleman was forced to be the aggressor legally, claiming that all sorts of ballots had been illegally counted (and not counted) while, through it all, the fact that Franken led by 225 votes hung over the proceedings. Voters tend to lose interest in politics quickly -- particularly after an election as nasty and long as this race was -- and that sort of fatigue played right into Franken's hands.

Calm, Cool and Collected: Franken's problem throughout the race was, well, himself. A comedian, satirist and provocateur during the days before his Senate bid, Franken spent the entire campaign trying to prove to Minnesota voters that he was a serious person who wanted the job for all the right reasons. Franken's ad campaign did a solid job on that front (his two best featured his 4th grade teacher and his wife) even as Coleman was stripping off the bark with his own ad campaign. When the race ended in a tie, Franken did something very smart; he stayed out of the spotlight. He was rarely seen or heard and when he did pop into public view it was during an occasional visit to Washington when he was huddling with potential colleagues and getting briefed on issues by potential staffers -- in short, acting like a senator. He gave Republicans nothing to use to sow doubts about whether he was ready for the office to which he was headed. While Franken's personal discipline did little to effect the legal outcome, it played a critical part in slowly but surely securing public support behind the idea that not only had he won but that he was ready to be a senator.

$$$: Recounts and six-month legal fights aren't cheap. Franken's national connections -- including his close ties to the affluent Hollywood community -- allowed him to collect more than $2 million from mid-November through the end of March. (Reports for the second fundraising quarter won't be filed with the Federal Election Commission until mid July.) Franken's willingness and ability to raise millions in support of the extended legal fight allowed him to keep on the best and brightest in terms of staff and run the sort of Rolls Royce campaign that kept him ahead throughout the seven plus months the race went into overtime.

Wednesday Fix Picks: Is "Sanfording it" (blowing yourself up politically once the initial damage has been endured) going to become part of the lexicon like "pulling a Homer" did?

1. Sanfording it. Big time.
2. Greenville News calls on Sanford to step aside.
3. A Republican food fight over Sarah Palin.
4. Robert Byrd is released from the hospital.
5. An interesting Jacko obit.

Torsella for Specter: Only months after declaring his intention to run against Sen. Arlen Specter, former National Constitution Center president Joe Torsella is endorsing the incumbent for reelection. Prior to Specter's Republican-to-Democrat party switch in late April, Torsella was the lone Democrat in the field -- casting himself as a voice for change against the entrenched Specter. But, when Specter became a Democrat and quickly won the endorsement of the White House as well as Gov. Ed Rendell (D), Torsella decided to drop his candidacy. In the endorsement of his one time foe, Torsella said that he had spoken at "great length" with Specter and had "become convinced that years of service do not preclude the ability to promote change; in fact, under the right circumstances, they enhance it." It's hard to see how Torsella's endorsement will have any impact on Rep. Joe Sestak's planned primary challenge to Specter. Torsella's close relationship with Rendell (and Rendell's close relationship with Specter) makes the endorsement somewhat expected and furthers the idea that Specter is the establishment pick and Sestak is the renegade outsider.

NRCC Hammers Dems on Energy: The National Republican Congressional Committee is targeting 13 House Democrats with radio ads and robo calls over their votes last week in favor of a climate change bill pushed by President Obama. The ad's narrator says that the legislation will "destroy jobs and cost middle class families $1,800 a year every time you turn on a switch" before urging listeners to call their member and tell then they were "wrong to vote for the Pelosi energy tax." The Democrats on the NRCC target list include: Rick Boucher (Va.), Vic Snyder (Ark.), Ike Skelton (Mo.), Baron Hill (Ind.), Harry Teague (N.M.), Bruce Braley (Iowa), Bart Gordon (Tenn.), Betsy Markey (Colo.), John Boccieri (Ohio), Zack Space (Ohio), Allan Grayson (Fla.), Debbie Halvorson (Ill.) and Mary Jo Kilroy (Ohio).

Click It!: Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Runner's World. 'Nuff said.

Americans United on TV With Energy Spots: Americans United, the most active liberal outside group in the early months of the Obama administration, is launching a five-figure television buy today in support of the president's energy plan. The ad, which is running in the Washington media market on cable stations for now, seeks to tie the energy proposal to job creation. "Clean energy represents the jobs of the future," says the ad's narrator. "But will they be American jobs?" The ad goes on to tout the Obama plan as the "foundation for America's long term economic success". A source familiar with the buy suggested that it may well be expanded to include states represented by senators who remain uncommitted to supporting the legislation.

Barrett Points To Future: Amid the ongoing soap opera that is Gov. Mark Sanford, one of the men seeking to replace him is trying to claim the issues high ground. Rep. Gresham Barrett (R) sent out an e-mail to his supporters on Tuesday acknowledging the "sad and difficult month for leadership in South Carolina" but quickly pivoting to urge recipients to stay focused on the central issue of the campaign (as he sees it): jobs. "Our economy is in trouble," wrote Barrett. "We've lost 95,000 jobs in the last twelve months." The play here is a simple one: with Sanford dominating coverage for a salacious scandal, Barrett is trying to cast himself as the anti-Sanford -- an issues focused, results-oriented politician. Whatever happens to Sanford -- and the implosion that was the AP interview he gave yesterday makes us believe resignation is a real possibility -- he will cast a major negative shadow over the race to replace him in 2010. All of the serious Republican candidates will, therefore, look for ways to distance themselves from him in the coming days and weeks.

Say What?: "This was a whole lot more than a simple affair, this was a love story. A forbidden one, a tragic one, but a love story at the end of the day." -- Gov. Mark Sanford still not getting it.

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 1, 2009; 5:35 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Comments

Re: The second amendment

The second amendment merely reconizes the prexisting right. You can repeal the amendment, you cannot repeal the right.

The single most common lethal misuse of firearms is young black males shooting other young black males. It is not schoolyard shootings, which are vanishly rare.

The Republicans have been advancing progun legislation to finesse Democratic legislators from strong gun-owning states into voting against the second amendment. Their intent is to generate an issue for the next election cycle.

So far, the Dems have not taken the bait. One result has been pssage of some serious progun legislation.

Posted by: sesquiculus | July 7, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

@ Kili:

"These little men filled with envy are capable of producing nothing and are motivated by their own inadequacies and desires to wield authority against men of talent."
-- Ron Paul

I will NEVER respect a man who believes BS like this.

There was once a libertarianism of the left, one that believed people should be protected from corporate power, one that could refer to "freedom" without sticking "economic" in front of it. That is gone and what remains now is just another GOP, one that believes in letting the serfs smoke pot. And serfs we would be, because "economic freedom" is just a dressed-up sales job for "slavery." No thanks.

Under libertarianism as defined today, we would all be working eighteen hour days for 2500 calories and a grass mat to sleep on, and any complaints would not be answered with any "force an' fraud," only with a frosty "nobody FORCES you to work here," and ... starvation. No thanks.

I don't want limited government, I want a government whose mission is to protect ordinary people from the powerful, one that stood between the corporation and the citizen, not one that axiomatically viewed the wealthy as the worthy.

Ron Paul talks a bunch of simplistic BS about gold standards and "jobs," a word that emerges from his mouth with three syllables spanning an octave. "JAAAH-uhhhh-OOOOOB" I can't stand the guy.

And I'm serious about repealing the second amendment. The idea that an armed citizenry is some defense against tyranny is pure conceit; in real life the armed are going to side with the oppressor overwhelmingly, and the price of gun ownership just leads to too many shootings of schoolyards and too many swaggering rednecks. I think the whole thing is a big stupid mistake long overdue to be corrected.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 2, 2009 1:46 AM | Report abuse

It's a stretch, but Ron Paul could be thought of as this party's Goldwater - all they need is their
==

It's more than a stretch, it's an attempted leap across a canyon. Sorry, but Ron Paul is a complete idiot. I have extremely little respect for him.

As for the rest, I don't want limited government, I want powerful government, lots of regulation and high taxation on business. I have this "thing" about prosperity .. I like it. And low taxes / regulation lead to downsizing and executive embezzlement, not prosperity.

As for gun owners, frankly, having seen what a hash America has made of gun ownership, at this point in my life I favor repeal.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 2, 2009 12:04 AM | Report abuse

It never ceases to amaze me as to what a jerk Chris is. His comments about the Franken win is fraught with underhanded, unnecessary cynicism. The bare fact of the matter is, despite Cilizza's biased disappointment, by a small or large margin Franken won fair and square- period. All the parsing and rationales offered does not change that. Chris, stop trying to be such a big shot; you are just too full of yourself and are far from being a big league commentator or analysis. Just report the facts for a change.

Posted by: natalkstlmo | July 1, 2009 11:11 PM | Report abuse

"I thought this was a smashin' idea and I got briefly involved with them, only to find that they're every bit as demented as libertarians in general. Far-right, and seeing firearms as some sort of panacea for, well, everything."

I can see the attraction, especially if you were in your 20s at that time! And yes, Libertarians can be scary.

But, as the current college-age generation grows up, I can see a party supported by small business owners, the commercial sector, gays, NORMAL, and gun owners who support a smaller and less intrusive federal government. It's a stretch, but Ron Paul could be thought of as this party's Goldwater - all they need is their Reagan.

"Anti-gay stuff marks the speaker as an idiot, and even support for gay marriage -- not civil unions, the whole deal -- is at a watershed."

Vigorous agreement, and I hope you're right...

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Desperately looking for a place to belong.

==

That's what I say about you GOPers

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

thought this was a smashin' idea and I got briefly involved with them
>>>>>>>>>>>>>...

Desperately looking for a place to belong.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

The Libertarian party down my way is trying to capitalize on the impatience the LGBT community is feeling towards the President because of his inaction regarding DOMA and DADT.

Some party is going to arise from the ashes, and I think that the social issues voters are going to be the ones left out. It's fascinating to watch.

Posted by: Kili

The gay community has an ongoing flirtation with the Libertarians, at least in the area of hate crime. Google Pink Pistols, an organization of armed gays that seeks to repel hate-crimes by shooting over their heads, or between their eyes.

I thought this was a smashin' idea and I got briefly involved with them, only to find that they're every bit as demented as libertarians in general. Far-right, and seeing firearms as some sort of panacea for, well, everything.

I nurture hope that Obama is going to turn his attention to the two D laws, but he's been a big disappointment to me so far, cleaving too much to "bipartisanship" when what he needs to do is tell the GOP to go screw itself.

But I think the culture wars are dead. Who outside the teabaggers has a strong feeling about the great pelvic issues? Support for abortion rights hasn't budged in decades, outside some movement on partial-birth, which is almost always for extreme medical conditions anyway, the mother's or the fetus'

Anti-gay stuff marks the speaker as an idiot, and even support for gay marriage -- not civil unions, the whole deal -- is at a watershed.

The culture warriors have lost.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Al Franken nor Norm Coleman have run marathons.

Sarah Palin and I have similar paces. George W. Bush is faster, Mike Dukakis and John Edwards are way faster (but when they were pretty young), Mike Huckabee considerably slower, and Bill Frist and Al Gore run at stately paces (in the same marathon! Bill came in before Al). Tom Vilsack finished ahead of the walkers, but not by much.

I don't see an R/D correlation here...

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 7:29 PM | Report abuse

first "is" = "if". No one is obligated to answer anyone else's questions here (in fact, I'm pretty sure YOU said you were going to "ignore me" but I guess not).

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 7:28 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox8:

You can comment on anything you like -- you asked "Who cares?" and I answered that I was asking Kili is she cares -- still not sure what the issue is.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

chris,

my favorite totally unscientific tidbit was from prostitutes in Las Vegas. There was a news story some years ago that their services were equally in demand during Republican and Democratic conventions, but the Republicans were interested in the more kinky stuff.

Here's the point I'm trying to make: the Republican party is in serious regrouping mode. We Democrats were in a similar situation 15 years ago. koolkat's "Red State -- FAT STATE!" syllogism, and your list of "statistical facts", misses the point - yes, it hints at hypocrisy but there's plenty of that in politics. Indeed, it's an important component of politics.

Here's what I think are more interesting statistics:

- The AMA is heavily Republican. (http://mediamattersaction.org/factcheck/200906110008) I think that this is because they're, for the most part, self-employed, and so see the downside of over-regulation.

- The Libertarian party down my way is trying to capitalize on the impatience the LGBT community is feeling towards the President because of his inaction regarding DOMA and DADT.

Some party is going to arise from the ashes, and I think that the social issues voters are going to be the ones left out. It's fascinating to watch.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

If you keep recounting the votes, sooner or later your going to get the result you need to get a homosexual in office.

Posted by: a4853916 | July 1, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

I was asking KILI if she cares.

==

Then send her an email, if you can get her to give you an email address.

As long as you post in a public blog, you have no control over who reads and answers.

You don't control this place, much though you would like to keep yourself as the topic

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 7:01 PM | Report abuse

I was asking KILI if she cares.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Did you know that Gov. Palin is a marathon runner too?

==

Who cares? She's an idiot

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

@Kili: these are gross statistics, representing group correlations, of little predictive value for individuals. Are there fat Democrats? Sure. Are there Republicans who work out? Sure (there's a guy in my gym who won't talk to me since I let slip I was glad McCain lost).

But .. there remains the statistical fact that the red states

(1) are fatter

(2) are less educated

(3) have more divorces

(4) have more teen pregnancy

(5) consume more pornography

(6) have more drug problems

You can always find individuals who buck the trends.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Kili:

Did you know that Gov. Palin is a marathon runner too?

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

"1) economic. It's a lot cheaper to eat unhealthy, especially if time is a factor. Fast food is cheap and easy and unhealthy. Red states tend to be more economically depressed than blue states."

But, the poor voted more strongly for Obama than for McCain: http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2009/05/how-did-white-people-vote-how-did-rich.html. I do think that if you could get the data, you'd find that in red states, those who voted for Obama would have on average a higher BMI than those who voted for McCain.

"2) cultural. This may be just a stereotype, but it seems like blue staters are less self-indulgent than red staters. Blue staters are the ones who tend to exercise more, diet more, buy fuel efficient cars. Red staters tend to do the opposite for all of these things. This may be stereotype, but I've run the gauntlet from extreme blue (Maryland) to extreme red (Texas). My own personal experience seems to confirm this."

I'm a Prius-driving, marathon-running, Pollen-reading blue stater. I'm sure that these three properties correlate with having voted for Obama. But, I would like to point out that to a lot of people living in the heartland, it's ME who is the self-indulgent one: I have the funds and the time to run an hour every morning and choose my market based on whether they have a regular supply of fresh basil.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget, I want to repeal the 19th Amendment too

==

And I want to repeal the Second.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Palin the focal point of the GOP search for its soul:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2009/07/01/controvery_over_palin_just_a_s.html

Trying to decide if they should broaden their appeal, requiring the dropping of the intolerance that is costing them so many moderate votes, or just try to repackage the same old message in new paper and bow and sell it better, the decision on Palin remains at the core.

I want the GOP to shrink to the point that we can drown it in the bathtub, but it would be keen-o if the Democrats had some worthy and stabilizing opposition. I don't think it will be the GOP, though.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Trust me, chrisfox8, 99% of us heterosexuals (regardless of age) know that an adult male having sex with any other male is, by definition, HOMOSEXUAL.

==

Trust you? Not with my lunch money, certainly not as any kind of authority. You're stupid and you lie a lot.

Don't you wonder why you have to beg other posters here to engage with you? Haven't you ever wondered why that is?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

You get your information from a Dutch NAMBLA?

Keep digging, Jake.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:17 PM | Report abuse

So, Jake, you claim to be heterosexual and married, though I believe your "wife" came in a plain brown wrapper and owes her ancestry to a beach ball.

Are you attracted to prepubescent girls? Wouldn't surprise me.

I'm not much interested in any guy under about 28, even if he's exactly my "type," dark-skinned and Asian. Even when I was 20 and just coming out, I was never even remotely attracted to anyone more than a few years younger, and I have never in my like known another gay man who was attracted to a prepubescent.

Where do you get your "insights?" Out of your rear end?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget, I want to repeal the 19th Amendment too ; )

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

It's not just me:

Dr. Frits Bernard "The Dutch Paedophile Emancipation Movement". Paidika: the Journal of Paedophilia volume 1 number 2, (Autumn 1987), p. 35-4. "Heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality and paedophilia should be considered equally valuable forms of human behavior.".

Trust me, chrisfox8, 99% of us heterosexuals (regardless of age) know that an adult male having sex with any other male is, by definition, HOMOSEXUAL.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

LOL!!! For the record, men who molest little girls are heterosexuals. Men who molest both girls and boys are bi-sexual (like you).

==

For the record, you're an ignorant idiot.

Men who desire sex with children are pedophiles. Pedophilia isn't on the hetero/homo continuum at all, it's a psychopathology.

You're just an anti-gay dinosaur trying to shoehorn reality into your idiotic (and spectacularly failed) ideology.

And you really think your anti-gay screeds carry any weight among educated people?

This is the only evidence you've provided that would corroborate your claim to be old enough to be retired.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Pedophiles often make no distinction about their child victims' gender, it's the helplessness of their victims that attracts them.

>>>>>>>>>>>

More of your "expertise" on display????

Seek professional help before you strike again!

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

LOL!!! For the record, men who molest little girls are heterosexuals. Men who molest both girls and boys are bi-sexual (like you).

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Well I guess as long as the bombs don't hurt anyone, it's OK with me.

As usual, you Libs confuse intent with effectiveness. you have plenty of the former and so little of the latter.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

why must you parade your personal information on an anonymous blog. you seem to relish releasing things no one here cares to know

==

I'm gay, you're stupid and immature.

We both parade personal information.

See?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, does ANYONE (other than "chrisfox8" and "PatrickNYC1") really believe that Catholic priests who molested boys are not "homosexuals" as well?

==

Go read the clinical studies, MORON, and learn what sort of lives pedophiles lead. They are much more heterosexual than the general population.

Pedophiles often make no distinction about their child victims' gender, it's the helplessness of their victims that attracts them.

Yesssss, you really ARE this dumb. UnbeLIEVable!!

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

we gay men like other men

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

why must you parade your personal information on an anonymous blog. you seem to relish releasing things no one here cares to know.

BTW, what is your favorite color? some of us are dying to know. do you like peaches?

did it ever occur to you that very few people have any interest in your thoughts?

didn't think so. there is so little that occurs to you I suppose.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I guess lobbing bombs over the border is OK these days, since its only our allies getting hit.

==

Little rockets that mostly explode on hillsides and only once in a while hurt anyone, versus shelling populated areas?

Little rockets fired by criminal gangs as opposed to missile phalanxes fired under orders of the Israeli government?

You're demented.

Anyone who's ever met any Israelis knows who the racists are.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, does ANYONE (other than "chrisfox8" and "PatrickNYC1") really believe that Catholic priests who molested boys are not "homosexuals" as well? I guess that NAMBLA are well-adjusted heterosexuals too. Come on, people!!!

From the story: federal authorities say Lombard, 42, of 24 Indigo Creek Trail, performed sexual acts on his adopted son and invited a male undercover investigator online to fly to North Carolina and do the same.

Lombard owns the home with "his (unnamed) partner" another man, according to Durham County property records. The pair bought the home, which sits at the end of a narrow path lined with trees and multicolored homes, in May 2007, the records show. The co-owner has not been accused of any wrongdoing (yet).

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Israel's settlements are a direct violation of international law

I guess lobbing bombs over the border is OK these days, since its only our allies getting hit.

the wimp contingent speaks soft and carries no stick.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else?

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Another "victory" for gay adoptions:

http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/06/30/duke.molestation.internet/index.html

Posted by: JakeD

==

Wow you're even stupider than I thought, and that's saying a LOT because I regard you as iconically sto0pit.

It says nowhere in the article that the kid's parent was gay.

People who have sex with children are almost overwhelmingly heterosexual, much more so than the general population, you drooling IDIOT.

A man who has sex with a male child isn't gay, IDIOT, he's a PEDOPHILE.

Let me clue you in, IDIOT: we gay men like other men, as in adults, as in secondary sexual characteristics.

Attraction to children isn't hetero or homosexual, and the gender of the child has little to do with the attraction.

My GOD you are one stupid motherf*cker.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Frankenstein only won because of plenty of voter fraud. Heck only in America can you count more votes then there were actual votes. Funny how those numbers do not add up but still count. Almost sounds like Sodumb and his 99% vote for him.

Posted by: KABOOKEY | July 1, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

his mideast policy is aimed at castrating Israel and rewarding the killers.

==

picturesque language.

Obama's approach to mideast peace goes nowhere near far enough in balancing Palestinian interests with Israeli, and Israel is once again showing itself to be faithless and self-important, planning even more settlements that would need to be torn down to achieve peace in the region.

Who among the Palestinians are "the killers?" I think you're just posting crap.

Israel's settlements are a direct violation of international law, and while this has been the American position for many presidencies, very few are willing to make issue of it. Obama has barely started to, hardly "castrating" Israel.

What an idiotic choice of words, considering that Nazi doctors literally did castrate many Jews, both physically and with X-ray radiation. You should be ashamed of yourself, and would be if you had more maturity than a ninth-grader.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

John Dim bulb in howston - I guess my point was that time after time the Obimbo admin sides with our enemies and ignores our friends, his mideast policy is aimed at castrating Israel and rewarding the killers. the Korean fiasco - still no consequences in sight. the American episode - he sides with chavas and Castro. If it only happened occasionally, it would not be so noticable.

Remember when Georgia was attacked? how about the incredibly empty reponse to the Iran events?

Now too bad for you, those are all factual accounts of real world occurances. And the lame response by the wimp in chief. now where did I go wrong, in your esteemed opinion?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

make me feel slow and stupid afterward.


aka - normal.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Keep up the good work, king_of_zouk : )

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Zouk, your relationship to facts is tangential at best. As is customary for most 21st century Republicans, you confuse opinions and ad hominem attacks with reality.

As an example, do you understand that your earlier comparison of the position of the American Communist Party towards the coup in Houndras (sp) to the current administrations position is what is known as the "fallacy of comparison"?

What exactly is your point? Do you believe that anything that is supported by a communist party must be, ipso facto, anti-American and/or wrong?

Are you really sure what a Communist is, Zouk?

Posted by: JohnDinHouston | July 1, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"ddawd, you might be interested in a 2006 study at Cornell that found no correlation with education (in terms of completing high school) and obesity. They did find a correlation with education and not smoking. Of course, there are well known correlations between obesity and poverty, and obesity and race. There may, in fact, be a correlation between a Mississippi resident who voted for Obama and obesity. We could see if Nate Silver has an opinion."

I guess my next two conjectures for the difference.

1) economic. It's a lot cheaper to eat unhealthy, especially if time is a factor. Fast food is cheap and easy and unhealthy. Red states tend to be more economically depressed than blue states.

2) cultural. This may be just a stereotype, but it seems like blue staters are less self-indulgent than red staters. Blue staters are the ones who tend to exercise more, diet more, buy fuel efficient cars. Red staters tend to do the opposite for all of these things. This may be stereotype, but I've run the gauntlet from extreme blue (Maryland) to extreme red (Texas). My own personal experience seems to confirm this.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 1, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Not exactly a scientific study but when I'm stuck in an airport and looking for something healthy to eat, it's always a lot harder to find healthy food in red states.

I remember Tucson, huge airport, not a salad to be found anywhere. Just grease, grease, and more grease. Taco Bell was as close as it was possible to come to a meal that wouldn't make me feel slow and stupid afterward.

In Seattle you can not only get salad, you can get Vietnamese noodle soup.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

"Well, I don't think anyone is making the claim that adipose tissue will cause someone to vote Republican."

The Yahoo! article did not characterize the states as "red" - it said that they were southern. koolkat substituted "red" for "southern". And, by saying "Red State -- FAT STATE!" - using "fat" instead of "obese", and writing it in all caps - koolkat seemed to be taking a swipe at republicans (as well as the obese). But, I don't know koolkat - if you're reading this and I misconstrued you, I apologize.

ddawd, you might be interested in a 2006 study at Cornell that found no correlation with education (in terms of completing high school) and obesity. They did find a correlation with education and not smoking. Of course, there are well known correlations between obesity and poverty, and obesity and race. There may, in fact, be a correlation between a Mississippi resident who voted for Obama and obesity. We could see if Nate Silver has an opinion.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox -- chinarider watches a lot of children's TV, apparently -- what a surprise. must be where he gets his sophisticated outlook.

==

I believe it was Microsoft Journal, MSJ, since renamed to MSDN Magazine, that introduced that idiotic practice. Now more often than not software developers do it, and even after all these years my eyes refuse to accept it. Unlike most of them, I also read books and write text.

It's one of a large number of "inversion" offenses, taking some practice in written language and inverting it for no reason, other than making the writer feel cool. Or, more likely, issuing a cry for help.

Another one is the place the constant in a comparison to the left rather than to the right:

if (0 == nValue)

Nifty, huh?

The greatest offense of all is "cramming," and that one goes back to the beginning, whereeverythingrunstogetherwithnowhitespacetomakeitreadable.

And of course that perennial favorite, milspeak whr lttrs r ommtd fr n rsn

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

The "towering intellect" of the twin moonbats have returned.

As towering as a sand castle at high tide.

Care for another lesson in math, imbecile? I noticed you ran off when confronted with facts. Best to stick with insults, opinion and lunacy, your specialty.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox -- chinarider watches a lot of children's TV, apparently -- what a surprise. must be where he gets his sophisticated outlook.

Posted by: drindl | July 1, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Wow! Playmobil now comes with underscores for you yo play with? How fun for you! And you can have fun playing Where's Waldo while people around you get actual work done? Isn't that so nice for you!

Oops, watch out now, here's comes Trolley! Time for your Make Believe! Say hi to Stewart!

Posted by: China_Rider

==

Catch no ball.

Are these references I would get if I watched television? None of them mean anything to me

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Although I'm not holding my breath, it is
possible that the office will make the man. Nobody can say, with a straight face, that he's not worthy of joining those ninety nine Olympians who are currently
serving. If you can't beat the pants off
a minor tv personality chiefly known for being ill-humored you've got nothing to complain about.

Posted by: MARVINBAUMAN | July 1, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

"Hey China_Rider, I gather you're a software developer and a conformist, nobody else does ( this_BS ) with the spacing. In the project I'm on now, I remove that crap from every file I work on before I check in."
Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 2:43 PM

Wow! Playmobil now comes with underscores for you yo play with? How fun for you! And you can have fun playing Where's Waldo while people around you get actual work done? Isn't that so nice for you!

Oops, watch out now, here's comes Trolley! Time for your Make Believe! Say hi to Stewart!

Posted by: China_Rider | July 1, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

China_Rider:

As you can see, we have a few LIBERAL "poor, misguided cretins" posting here unfortunately.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

My personal opinion is that Chris Cillizza is a better political writer than Dan Froomkin as well.

==

Your opinion on this, as in everything, is of no concern nor any value

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Which is why I thought that Coleman should have taken the case to the UNITED STATES Supreme Court -- I even donated money to his recount fund for that

==

Hahhahahahah good, you wasted your money. Serves you right.

Now run off and make another donation to Sarah to help ensure an Obama victory in 2012.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Hey China_Rider, I gather you're a software developer and a conformist, nobody else does ( this_BS ) with the spacing.

In the project I'm on now, I remove that crap from every file I work on before I check in.

You should be ashamed of yourself for adopting that despicable fad. Nice to know that your resume won't even get looked at unless you forebear from imposing this stupid habit on readers.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

"I did read the article. This is not a new argument. I just don't believe there is a causal relation between obesity and voting Republican."

Well, I don't think anyone is making the claim that adipose tissue will cause someone to vote Republican.

Personally, I think its a matter of education. Red staters tend to be a lot less educated and that leads to unhealthy eating choices.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 1, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

It is so apropos for Al Franken to win the Senator seat. He can now join the rest of the "comedians" in the Senate. He can also demand being called "Senator" instead of "Sir", because he worked very hard to earn that title. They are such clowns(:

Posted by: Logic3 | July 1, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Sanfording won't become part of the lexicon, but "hiking the Appalachian" already has: www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hiking+the+Appalachian

Posted by: dktrrobt | July 1, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

"One wonders if the hapless Republicans will ever learn?"

No, I expect they are all as stupid as you. sure ldooks that way from the posts here. Stoopid, lame little tinfoil hat wearing kooks...

heres the fair and balanced fox report:

"Now we find out that Al Franken -- who's barely sane if you read his books, and is quite angry in every facet of his life -- is now the Senator from Minnesota," Kilmeade said, turning to his Minnesota-born co-host Gretchen Carlson. "Explain yourself, Gretchen."

LOL. losers.

Posted by: drindl | July 1, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

May Senator Franken be half the Senator I suspect he is. Somebody has to start kicking some butt down there in Washington.

Posted by: elgunjduts | July 1, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

valwayne:

Are you being sarcastic about "congratulations" for stealing the election?

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Minn. Loss.

Posted by: grannie1 | July 1, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | "Ronald Reagan was the best President of the 20th century."

Amen. Semper Fi!

Posted by: China_Rider
--------------------------
You poor, misguided cretins. Ronald Reagan gave this country away to the rich. He sowed the seeds of de-regulation which is at the heart of our current crisis. He pioneered trickle-down economics which is where the greedy fat-cats get so rich that the poor get the pennies that fall out of their pockets. He paved the way for the conservative movement which is ruining this country.

His heart was in the right place but unfortunately his head was empty.

Posted by: xconservative | July 1, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

The Democrats are to be congratulated on their new Senator. As this post article points out they stole the MN seat fair and square. They had a pre-election and post election strategy to steal the close ones and it worked to perfection in MN. The hapless Republicans thought it was enough to win on election day, and weren't prepared despite all the warnin signs. If the Republicans every thought Gov Pawlenty was a potential Presidential Nominee they'd better take a 2nd look. He doesn't know how to win the hard way! The Democrats have a national strategy to rig the census: ACORN, to steal elections through registration fraud: ACORN, and to get to the courts first to get the votes counted their way. One wonders if the hapless Republicans will ever learn?

Posted by: valwayne | July 1, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Yet in the state of Minnesota, the Democrat Party just spent millions of dollars and wasted 8 months to ensure that a Democrat-controlled court would guarantee that THOUSANDS of legitimate votes were NOT counted, so that their guy Frankin could win the Senate seat? Right?"

You might be interested in this: http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2009/04/when-does-close-become-too-close-to.html

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

CBS' Chip Reid and Helen Thomas double teamed Robert Gibbs today at the daily press briefing on the "tightly controlled" town hall meeting President Obama will hold on health care. Gibbs kept saying lets have this discussion AFTER the meeting. Helen Thomas accused the White House of "controlling the press." She said almost all White House/Obama events are "prepackaged." She accused the White House of not "having any answers."

If Helen has it figured out, how long until the cat is out of the bag for the rest of you.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Reading some of the putrid comments, from those defending the indefensible - - and, no, I sure am NOT a wimpy Republican -- the votes counted in how many precincts totaled more than the registered voters...?
Candidly, even though (1) Kirby Puckett was wonderful there, (2) Mancini's Restaurant in St. Paul is wonderful, and (3) my wife got her doctorate at a Minnesota university, I will NEVER spend another dime in that state, ever! And, if I can avoid ever going into that sorry State-of-Failure, trust me, I will.

Posted by: frost1 | July 1, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

China_Rider:

I was in the Army (although "Semper fidelis" is also the motto of the Army's 11th Infantry Regiment, which was founded in 1861 by President Abraham Lincoln and today trains at Fort Benning, Georgia ; )

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:

Any patriotic AMERICAN cries when democracy fails. You think it's OK to manufacture votes for Franken and not count votes for Coleman?

BTW: did you see the latest polling on Obama's healthcare plan?

http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/07/01/health.care.poll/index.html?iref=werecommend

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | "Ronald Reagan was the best President of the 20th century."

Amen. Semper Fi!

Posted by: China_Rider | July 1, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

R party continues to melt down. hilarious...

A hard-hitting piece on Sarah Palin in the new Vanity Fair has touched off a blistering exchange of insults among high-profile Republicans over last year’s GOP ticket – tearing open fresh wounds about leaks surrounding Palin and revealing for the first time some of the internal wars that paralyzed the campaign in its final days.

Rival factions close to the McCain campaign have been feuding since last fall over Palin, usually waging the battle in the shadows with anonymous quotes. Now, however, some of the most well-known names in Republican politics are going on-the-record with personal attacks and blame-casting.

William Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard and at times an informal adviser to Sen. John McCain, touched off the latest back-and-forth Tuesday morning with a post on his magazine’s blog criticizing the Todd Purdum-authored Palin story and pointing a finger at Steve Schmidt, McCain’s campaign manager.

Kristol cited a passage in Purdum’s piece in which “some top aides” were said to worry about the Alaska governor’s “mental state” and the prospect that the Alaska governor may be suffering from post-partum depression following the birth of her son Trig. “In fact, one aide who raised this possibility in the course of trashing Palin’s mental state to others in the McCain-Palin campaign was Steve Schmidt,” Kristol wrote.

Asked about the accusation, Schmidt fired back in an e-mail: “I'm sure John McCain would be president today if only Bill Kristol had been in charge of the campaign.”

“After all, his management of [former Vice President] Dan Quayle’s public image as his chief of staff is still something that takes your breath away,” Schmidt continued. “His attack on me is categorically false.”

Posted by: drindl | July 1, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

First, congratulations to Senator-elect Franken. Second, I know it's your job to analyze the events of the day but the bottom line is he got a lot of
semi-protest votes from people who didn't think there was any way he could win and
probably wouldn't have voted for him if they thought he could.

Posted by: MARVINBAUMAN | July 1, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

The Communist Party USA’s position on the recent non-coup in Honduras is markedly congruous with Barack Obama’s: “The Communist Party USA (CPUSA) joins with the world in denouncing the coup d’état this morning against the legally elected president of the Republic of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya, (snip) This should confound no one, since the Communist Party USA was publicly exhiliarated about Barack Obama as a candidate.

not surprised at all.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

"Which is why I thought that Coleman should have taken the case to the UNITED STATES Supreme Court -- I even donated money to his recount fund for that"

Good boy! Now why don't you take everything else you have and donate it to Sarah Palin's presidential campaign? Or else there's this bridge we have in brooklyn you might wanna buy.

Posted by: drindl | July 1, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

While campaigning, Obama claimed, "Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket." But now he claims it will only cost the price of a postage stamp a day. Designed to combat global warming (well, “climate change” as they now call it to give themselves a measure credibility since global temperatures have actually dropped over the last decade), cap and trade will do little to help our planet.

these promises should be printed on milk cartons. they have the same shelf life.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

CC's not bad, but he's too much of an insular insider and rather naive as well.

franken won because he ran a better campaign and because coleman is an empty suit.

Posted by: drindl | July 1, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

My personal opinion is that Chris Cillizza is a better political writer than Dan Froomkin as well.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Did I just read that JakeD says he is ashamed to be an American?

That is SO Michelle Obama of you, Jake. Tomorrow you have to wear TWO flag pins to prove your patriotism.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | July 1, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Interesting column, but not up to Froomkin's standard.

Posted by: frodot | July 1, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Ronald Reagan was the best President of the 20th century.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

China_Rider wrote: "We are no longer a serious country."

Where was your concern when Gopher from the Love Boat or Sonny Bono were sworn in as Republicans? Or the Gipper, for that matter. Don't make me go on. There's a long list of dubiously credentialed Republicans for me to chose from.

Hypocrite.

Posted by: nodebris | July 1, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

ala36093:

Which is why I thought that Coleman should have taken the case to the UNITED STATES Supreme Court -- I even donated money to his recount fund for that -- I understand why he decided to step aside though.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

China_Rider:

Good posts (keep in mind that Franken's 5-0 "victory" was because the Chief Justice and one other Justice sat out of the decision, so it probably would have been 5-2, unless those two could have convinced the 5 otherwise).

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

It's easy to win an election when your party is allowed to "devine" votes. This is a sham. Franken has no shame.

Posted by: ala36093 | July 1, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: learss791 | "Bush v Gore was decided by 5-4 ruling, clearly split upon ideological lines. Were you mocking Florida in 2000 about their hanging chads."

Actually, the stay was 5-4, the final ruling on the constitutional merits of Florida's "re-count" was 7-2. Moreover, both Kennedy and O'Conner, ( hardly your basis right windgers ), ruled in favour of the 5-4 stay which merely gave remedy to give SCOTUS an opportunity to rule on constitutional grounds prior to a faulty "re-count".

As Scalia wrote about counting first and ruling on legal issues second: "The counting of votes that are of questionable legality does in my view threaten irreparable harm to petitioner Bush, and to the country, by casting a cloud upon what he claims to be the legitimacy of his election. Count first, and rule upon legality afterwards, is not a recipe for producing election results that have the public acceptance democratic stability requires."

In other words, the SCOTUS ruling provided a blueprint for the Demokrat Partiya in Minnesota - get the election boards to "count" and tally that yields acceptable results, do it quickly, and once a "recount" is made public, the state courts will be loathe to over turn election canvassing boards which would lead to greater suspicion of malfeasance, corruption, and gross incompetence.

The Demokrat Partiya mobilized thousands of "boots on the ground" and millions in cash to secure a pivotal U.S. Senate seat. Coleman, following the actual rules, didn't lose; he was punked.

We have no standing as a serious country. We are governed now by snotty narcissists locked forever in the 60's of Me Über Alles psychotropes.

Iran, Honduras, Georgia, whomever, are now free to laugh at us and our indignation over election thugery.

Posted by: China_Rider | July 1, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

mascmen7:

"No matter what" meaning manufacturing votes for Franken and not counting votes for Coleman?

DonColibri:

Great post -- thank you for your thoughts -- as an American, I can tell you that some of us are indeed ashamed.

king_of_zouk:

Did you read the article on Palin in Runner's World magazine?

learss791:

I always thought that election should have been decided by the Congress, not the Supreme Court.

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations Al and Frannie.

I met you back in the 80s and Al, you were most kind and encouraging to an aspiring actor. You were also obsessing about fairness for the people in our politics even back then.

I never made it in showbiz, but I'm glad to see you finally made it in politics. Big time.

Way to go guys!

Your's truly, Chip S.
[By the way here's a link and an excerpt from my 'weblog'.
superleft.blogspot.

Tax Facts for Hannitized Ditto-Heads...

In 1929 when the stock market crashed, the upper tax bracket for the rich was only 24%... Today in 2009 it is 35%. But when America was at our greatest, during the 1940's-1960's, the upper tax rate for rich Americans was 88%-94%!

All through the 1950s and early 1960s the upper tax rate for the rich was over 90% and anybody old enough can tell you that those were the years when America was the strongest and happiest and most prosperous.

During those years you could make a very good living and support your family and buy a house and a car, all on just one salary, while working at the most modest jobs in America. You could have a very good life for a whole family all supported by just one 'burger-flipper, or elevator operator, or simply pumping gas! Jobs that Rush Limbaugh now mocks people for having, used to be good paying jobs.

Wake up, you've been lied to.

First, as for WWII getting us out of the Depression and not FDR's public spending... the money spent on WWII...W A S...P U B L I C...S P E N D I N G...

It was the public spending of the war, along with the FDR public works spending that ended the Great Depression. If there had been no war, then FDR would have had to spend even more money on public works in order to end the Depression.

You also must remember that this spending was not wasted because improving our Infrastructure actually increases the value of our land by making a more productive base for commerce to flourish. Better roads, rail, electric grid, communications grid, make the very land more valuable to the business world.

We paid for this by having an upper tax rate of 88% for rich people all during the 1940s and then we raised the tax rate to 94% to help pay for all of this. Our upper tax rate stayed above 90% from 1944-1963. During this time Eisenhower built our entire Interstate Expressway system!This was America at our best at our very peak!

Now our rates are all the way down to 35% for the rich and look where we are. Limbaugh and Hannity have been lying about America's tax and financial history for years. You can check these facts in any encyclopedia.

Posted by: ChipShirley | July 1, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Senator Coleman supported the insane President Bush II until the end so had to be voted out no matter what even though they had to vote for another insane person. Anyone but a Bush II devotee is the lesson of Franken's victory.

Posted by: mascmen7 | July 1, 2009 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Franken is just another Dem cartoon character to add to the list of Pelosi, Harry Reid, Barney Frank, etc. He's a goof and he proves that the Dems just operate on the principle that you can fool most of the people at least one time. Minnesota is again the laughingstock for electing this guy and taking six months to do it. It's just unfathomable that you can take this guy seriously.

Posted by: AsstGM | July 1, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

As a foreigner watching from outside the US, I am always astounded at the unbelievable self-serving hypocrisy of the American political system. Let me get this straight: The Democratic Party has campaigned unceasingly since 2000 to ensure that “every vote is counted.” They have made inaccurate claims over and over that the 2000 vote was “stolen” because “every vote was not counted,” many even made the same claim in Ohio in 2004! The American government has now attacked Iran for exactly the same thing, that “every vote was not properly counted.” Your Democrat president has recently attacked Honduras after their president was legally impeached by their Supreme Court and Congress and legally removed from office, simply because the “result of a free vote was overturned.” Wow, you folks sure seem committed to the importance of every vote!

Yet in the state of Minnesota, the Democrat Party just spent millions of dollars and wasted 8 months to ensure that a Democrat-controlled court would guarantee that THOUSANDS of legitimate votes were NOT counted, so that their guy Frankin could win the Senate seat? Right?

And you crazy hypocrites are spending billions of dollars and wasting thousands of American lives, killing tens of thousands of innocent civilians in order to impose YOUR political system on the rest of us???? Save the money and the lives! The rest of us ALREADY have our OWN corrupt systems, we certainly don’t need YOURS!

Posted by: DonColibri | July 1, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

"Did you read the whole article? The fattest states are red, red, red. Most of the lean states are blue."

I did read the article. This is not a new argument. I just don't believe there is a causal relation between obesity and voting Republican.

Maybe I'm just being grumpy today, but I find the left end noise just as shallow as the right end noise.

I'm an Obama supporter and work on a California university campus. There is strong support for Obama among the students, but there's a growing force against him as well. These are the students who supported Paul. I suspect that the future of the Republican party will be much less on culture war issues and much more Libertarian. In two election cycles they could change the US political landscape.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

PARIS - Michelle Obama and her girls enjoyed a special Sunday shopping trip in Paris this month thanks to friends in high places who bent France's Sunday store-closing rules.President Nicolas Sarkozy said Tuesday that calls were made to open a swanky children's boutique,

Banana despot????

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

To China_Rider,
Bush v Gore was decided by 5-4 ruling, clearly split upon ideological lines. Were you mocking Florida in 2000 about their hanging chads. Probably not. How many times did they do a recount in Minnesota? A lot more than needed. Franken won. So deal with it.

Posted by: learss791 | July 1, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton urged President Obama for two days to toughen his language on Iran before he did so, and then was surprised when he condemned Iran's crackdown on demonstrators last week, administration officials say. (Snip) Mrs. Clinton had been advocating the stronger U.S. response, but the president resisted. When he finally took her advice, the aides said, he did so without informing her first.

this is a clear indication that Obambi is way over his head and too proud and arrogant to deal with it. Mr thin skin may have an evil eye but he is no America first patriot. more like a typical banana dictator with shopping, parties for his friends, AF one, etc, all the trappings of power on display for all his homies.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Another tax cheating Democrat in the senate. Thanks Minnesota you sure know how to pick 'em.

Just think, if Al purposely cheated on his taxes then he's simply not smart enough to steal and get away with it.

If he didn't mean to cheat on his taxes then it means he's not smart enough to fill out a simple tax form.

Either way Al just isn't smart.

But he does get to join that exclusive club of rat Democrats who use their office to enrich themselves and their friends while burning down our country. All they have to do is claim it was an "innocent mistake" and their somewhat intellectually and morally challenged constituents will re-elect them.

It's not Texas that should secede but Minnesota. They can join Canada and experience the joys of socialist medicine first hand. Al can go to Parliament and tell his lies there.

I'd let them back in on two conditions:
Leave Al in Canada
Pay a stiff membership fee to recompense the rest of us for the damage Lyin Al will cause.

Jesse "Feather Boa" Ventura was bad enough but at least his depredations were somewhat limited to in-state antics. Al will take the virus national.

Posted by: krankyman | July 1, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievable at how stupid the people in Minnesota are. How on earth can you vote in a clown to the senate? Your state sucks.

Posted by: rpsboyz | July 1, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

How did Franken Win? Because he's Good Enough, He's Smart Enough, and Doggone It, People Like Him!:

Posted by: GarrisonLiberty | July 1, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

We are no longer a serious country.

If Al Franken, ( okay, but seriously, kids: AL FRANKEN!!?! ), can be seated in the U.S. Senate after leading a cadre of socialist drones, ( liberals are not to be tarred with this brush - plenty of liberals are appalled by this advent ), who literally entered into a cabal with local elections board staff to "find" and then "re-count" a collection of "lost ballots", then we are not credible as a nation claiming Democracy unto itself.

If Al Franken is seated, we as a nation have no standing to criticize Iran, or Honduras, or Georgia, or anyone.

Minnesota is now officially a silly state of silly people and sillier government. What they have done is no more materially different than what that racist half wit in Iran has done, albeit with less violence.

No one - NO ONE - is fooled. The Bama-Llama's can play dumb all they want, ( type casting... ), and shrill shriek about Florida 2000, ( and a 7-2 SCOTUS ruling ), and still - no one is fooled. The Demokrat Partiya decide to get this seat bagged up and that's what happened. Period.

Hope & Change, Bread & Circuses, Obama & Franken: Useful Idiots one and all!

We are millions and millions, we're comin' to getcha, we're protected by unions so don't let it upsetcha! Can't escape the conclusion - it's probably God's will - that civilization, will grind to a standstill - we're comin' to getcha....

Posted by: China_Rider | July 1, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Nobody needed to crucify Palin, it did so just fine all by itself every time it opened its mouth.

And if it was McCain's only hope, he never had any. Bridge to nowhere, earmarks, they're callin' me a terrorist.

Posted by: chrisuxcox

another day, another tireless rant . do you ever try anything new? Or are you too lazy to head over to Huff and find an opinion? Even drivl manages to cut and paste a different rant everyday.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

LeftGuy,

You had to believe that Galloway was not behind a private oil dealings with Saddam in violation of the sanctions, in spite of quite a bit of evidence to the contrary, to think he mastered the hearing. His denials of wrongdoing finally exhausted the question, of course, and not many amateur cross examinations turn up much from a lying witness. Needless to say, I did not believe Galloway for an instant.

He was a difficult witness to control and he mounted his soap box in opposition to the war in Iraq. It was a clever tactic on his part, it was foreseeable, and a trial lawyer would have handled him better.
----------------
I have also read that the Honduran Supremes called the attempt by the now deposed prez to amend the constitution by plebiscite a violation of that very constitution. I reserve judgment until I have a firmer grasp of the facts, of course.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | July 1, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1:

Obviously, Franken beat the candidates who showed up, as he is now Senator-elect Al Franken.

My point is that I am generally opposed to third party candidates because they usually end up being spoilers.

Otherwise, third parties split the vote and the ultimate winner is often elected with less than 50% of the vote, so they are accused of being illegitimate, and they are often the polar opposite of the third party candidate ideologically.

Ralph Nader's candidacy helped George Bush and hurt Al Gore. I believe Dean Barkley hurt Al Franken more than Norm Coleman, but in this instance at least, it didn't prove to be fatal.

On a related note, I hope Harry Reid can push through a vote granting Franken seniority retroactive to January.

Posted by: Bondosan | July 1, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

After the Dems stole the Washington State election a few years back using these same tactics you'd have thought the Republicans would have been better prepared for what was to come in Minnesota, particularly with control of the Senate on the line.

Clearly the Dem lawyers are better than the Repub lawyers. As for who really one? - who cares!

Posted by: magellan1 | July 1, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

How dis Frankin win it? Because he is a liberal nut job from a state of liberal nut jobs. Simple as pie.

Posted by: affirmativeactionpresident | July 1, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

What is sad and ironic in all this is that of the five or so reasons listed as why Franken won the election, only one of them actually involved having more votes than his opponent.

That it took 250 odd days to finally arrive at this conclusion is pathetic. Personally, I think that town in Arizona had it right - they had two candidates who were tied - and here I do believe that Franken and Coleman were indeed tied within the limits of the ability to count votes - so the candidates cut cards to declare the winner. Short of holding another vote I find that far better than months and months of wrangling over legal minutea.

Posted by: perfgeek | July 1, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I love people who call Minnesota a state of liberal nut jobs. Because Michelle Bachman is such a liberal. A dastardly liberal!

And don't worry about being her. If Minnesota has to go through redistricting, MN-6 is on the chopping block. Now that would be hilarious.

Posted by: alkuth | July 1, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

This post shows in stark relief a form of journalistic laziness. Cillizza writes about why Franken won the legal battle for his seat, and he points to several factors, helpfully highlighted in bold. These factors are overwhelming procedural: more money, on the ground first, acting like a senator. The problem is, none of these have anything to do with the actual case.

The judges had to decide which person was in the right - they are the reason Franken won, and they didn't consider any of Chris's bolded factors. How come Chris doesn't point out that Franken won the legal battle because he won the election, and because his lawyers correctly applied the law to this controversy? I think it's because it's easier for a journalist to omit things like "Coleman lost the legal battle because his legal argument was not valid."

This may sound like an opinion, but after the court weighed in, its a fact. Chris - don't dance around the issue. When someone is right and someone is wrong, your duty is to point it out, not write about irrelevancies.

Posted by: Matt90266 | July 1, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Where I grew up, there was a John Birch Society billboard, up for many years:

America, Love it or Leave it!

During the late 60s, I remember thinking that they were probably right and I should leave.

But now I just have to say to Republicans everywhere. No, you leave! You don't love this country, you want it to be perceived as disastrous, as a terrible model for the world and as a terrible place to live.

So go now. Find a place in some Free Market Hell Hole (Mogadishu is government free, loaded with guns and just think, no taxes!) where your ideas matter. We, more and more and more Americans are tired of you and yours.

I think we elect erstwhile clowns like Al Franken and of course, this truly African American President in part, just to let you know: you are Done.


Posted by: shrink2 | July 1, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

"Koolkat,are you supporting or denying "Red State -- FAT STATE! ... Yup, that sure explains Colorado!" ??"

I did not say that. Someone else said that. So I deny it. Colorado is neither red nor fat.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Norm Coleman held a hearing to accuse British leftist George Galloway of terrorism. George Galloway slapped Coleman down so hard that Senator Levin had to hold his head down to keep from laughing. Galloway invited Coleman to bring charges formally in a court of law, which of course never happened.

Coleman became a US Senator because Paul Wellstone died a few days before the election. Franken won because Minnesotans were sick of Coleman.

Now if only we can beat Michelle Bachmann.

Posted by: LeftGuy | July 1, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse

How did Frankin win it? Because he is a liberal nut job from a state of liberal nut jobs. Simple as pie.

Posted by: affirmativeactionpresident | July 1, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Just cancelled an upcoming vacation to the Minneapolis area. I'm not going to contribute to the economy of a state infested with idiots and run by criminals!

Posted by: ftbindc | July 1, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

...and the crucifying of Sarah Palin, who was McCain's only hope, and everyone knew that.

==

You need to tighten the foil, the beams are getting through.

Nobody needed to crucify Palin, it did so just fine all by itself every time it opened its mouth.

And if it was McCain's only hope, he never had any. Bridge to nowhere, earmarks, they're callin' me a terrorist.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

What a sad day for the Democratic Party to have a buffoon such as Al Franken as a member, especially after he lied, cheated, and whined his way into the U. S. Senate.

==

Ah, no, Franken won fair and square. Pity you guys can't accept reality and have to see some black helicopter conspiracy every time something doesn't go your way.

As for sad days and buffoons, I'll see you Al Franken and raise you Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, and Tom Tancredo, not to mention Sanford,. Vitter, and Craig.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 1, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

He won because the voters chose him. Let's not forget that small detail.

Posted by: msilva2 | July 1, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Haha at the frothing of the conspiracy theorists. I think you should demand to see Franken's birth certificate.

Posted by: novamatt | July 1, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Of course, there might be another, even bigger reason for Al Franken's victory other than technical political organization, legal expertise during the recount, and superior funding, that Chris Cillizza seems to be unwilling to mention.

Maybe, just maybe, the electorate of Minnesota preferred to elect a Democrat, an eloquent and particularly clever man who effectively espouses Democratic Party ideals, and a liberal who isn't embarrassed to admit that he's a liberal, because they agreed with his political philosophy and wished to add his vote to the Democratic majority in the Senate that is trying to accomplish what We the People want.

The election was only close because the Coleman campaign effectively exploited the bluntness and occasional crudity of Al Franken's past comedic routines. If this election were solely on issues and who would best represent Minnesotans' views on the issues that face us, Franken would have won in an absolute rout.

Posted by: FergusonFoont | July 1, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Ozonecowboy, and others,
You are definitely out in the ozone. Franken won because he is in a predominately liberal state. Isn't it all all confusing that almost every uncounted vote, if not all uncounted votes, went to Franken in a liberal state, was confirmed in a liberal court? When will you lefties begin to think. That entire presidential election was maybe the most corrupt in our history--can you say "ACORN", as well as many other shady deals, and the crucifying of Sarah Palin, who was McCain's only hope, and everyone knew that. Now we probably have the most corrupt administration in our history, and the left is entirely "blind" to it; well, the average left-wing nut is, but the insiders aren't. This is definitely "The Fix".

Posted by: rebart1 | July 1, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

What a sad day for the Democratic Party to have a buffoon such as Al Franken as a member, especially after he lied, cheated, and whined his way into the U. S. Senate.

But hey, I'm from Illinois and we've had our share of pathetic Democratic senators: Dick Durbin, Barack Obama, and now Roland Burris.

It appears that the Democratic Party has become as systematically corrupt on a national level as the Chicago Democratic machine has been for decades.


Posted by: Jerzy | July 1, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

the dems are just following their old hero - joseph stalin when he said:
"it's not who votes that counts;
"it's WHO COUNTS THE VOTES!"

Posted by: infantry11b4faus | July 1, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Koolkat,are you supporting or denying "Red State -- FAT STATE! ... Yup, that sure explains Colorado!" ??

As a lean Coloraden, I'd note that Colorado's Governor, both Senators, majority of its House delegation, and both Houses of the state legislature are Democratic." So might "Blue State -- LEAN STATE!" better explain Colorado?

Posted by: malis | July 1, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"It makes me doubt a correlation with obesity and voting Republican."

Did you read the whole article? The fattest states are red, red, red. Most of the lean states are blue.

This is not really news. The southern states have always been the most unhealthy. But they are also the backbone of the Republican Party

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

You ask the question, "How did Franken win the Battle?" Elementary Watson, he got the most votes. Why is it nothing is cut and dry anymore, but we have to dramatize everything in this life?

Posted by: jakesfriend1 | July 1, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

@Bondosan - Stranger things have happened. You may forget that Perot briefly was ahead of Clinton in polling prior to the conventions. Even after he pulled his disappearing act, he *still* got 20%!

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | July 1, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

How Franken won:

1. More votes.

Posted by: novamatt | July 1, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Here's the basic story: Zelaya was elected president of Honduras in 2006. He quickly allied himself with Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez, who in turn provided him with millions of dollars. Then Zelaya set about subverting the Honduran constitution, which allows presidents to serve only one term. When the Honduran Congress refused to authorize a referendum that would allow Zelaya to run for re-election, Zelaya attempted to force the referendum anyway. The Supreme Court ruled against Zelaya. So did the human rights ombudsman, as well as the attorney general. This ended his bid for re-election. Almost. Zelaya proceeded to order the military to distribute the referendum ballots anyway. When leaders of the military refused, Zelaya fired them, then led a mob to the ballot storage area and began handing them.

That's when the Honduran military, with the backing of both the Honduran Supreme Court and the Congress, heroically stepped in and exiled Zelaya.

Obama's reaction was to declare Honduras' Congress and Supreme Court out of line, and declare their actions a “coup.” Siding with renowned human rights violators Fidel Castro of Cuba, Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua, and Chavez, Obama called for Zelaya's reinstatement.

There's a reason for this: When Obama sees an enemy of American ideals, he immediately identifies them as a potential supporter. Obama views the world through the lens of his own leadership -- if he can simply co-opt the leadership of every ideological group on the map, then he can avoid all conflict.

How can he cultivate followers among America's enemies? By siding against America, of course. In his statement of support for Zelaya, Obama derided America's history in Central and South America: "The United States has not always stood as it should with some of these fledgling democracies." It's the same tactic he's used with the Muslim world and with Europe -- throw America's history and past under the bus in order to gain the approval of those who hate us. Agree with everyone, no matter how anti-American, and no one will disagree with you.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

"Care to amend your remarks?"

Sure! Colorado is hardly a deep blue state - it's more of a purple - and yet it has the lowest rate of obesity. It makes me doubt a correlation with obesity and voting Republican.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

The economy remains sick. The stimulus plan isn't working. Investment capital, the lifeblood of a vigorous economy, is still on strike. More than 40 House Democrats voted against his energy tax bill, which barely passed by a seven-vote margin, and now faces huge obstacles in the Senate. His healthcare plan is on shaky ground. His promise not to tax middle class workers is in shreds, and massive deficits are piling up as fears mount that the economy may face months, if not years, of anemic growth.

The White House fashions new, defensive arguments weekly on behalf of Obama's stimulus. The latest argument coming out of the president's economic advisers is that they never actually expected the stimulus bill to trigger growth this early in the year. It's going to take a lot longer to show results, they now say.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

"Red State -- FAT STATE!"

Yup, that sure explains Colorado!

Good analysis of this awful senate race."

Uh, hate to break it to you, but according to the story, Colorado is the LEANEST state.

Care to amend your remarks?


Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"Red State -- FAT STATE!"

Yup, that sure explains Colorado!

Good analysis of this awful senate race."

Uh, hate to break it to you, but according to the story, Colorado is the LEANEST state.

Care to amend your remarks?


Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

In a devastating essay over at the Wall Street Journal, Mary Anastasia O'Grady reminds us all about some simple and crucial Constitutional details curiously missing from the latest liberal reporting on Honduras:


"While Honduran law allows for a constitutional rewrite, the power to open that door does not lie with the president. A constituent assembly can only be called through a national referendum approved by its Congress."


Therefore, Mr. Zelaya's attempt to create his own referendum, complete with Venezuelan ballots, was clearly a violation of his country's Constitution. What else was the Honduran Supreme Court supposed to conclude? For the American president Barack Obama to paint broad and clumsy strokes about "democratic elections" without mentioning Zelaya's blatant disregard for Honduran law is both outrageous and frightening. His refusal to lend support for those courageous Hondurans defending the law is also inexcusable.

Long ago in ancient China the philosopher Confucius was once asked how he would feel if everyone in the village liked him. Confucius said "not too good." When the disciple asked Confucius about everyone in the village hating him Confucius said he wouldn't feel good either. Addressing his perplexed disciple Confucius said he'd rather be hated by the bad people in the village and loved by the good people.

Barack Obama has a curious record in his political career siding with some pretty unsavory characters. His response to events in Iran and Honduras only extends this curiosity. With Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez on your side, what kinds of people in the village are supporting you? The good people of Honduras on the other hand want to defend their Constitution.

Isn't there anyone over at the U.N. willing to defend Honduras? Where are the good villagers?

All I can say to Mr Obambi - which way is up???

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"Red State -- FAT STATE!"

Yup, that sure explains Colorado!

Good analysis of this awful senate race."

Uh, hate to break it to you, but according to the story, Colorado is the LEANEST state.

Care to amend your remarks?


Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Just curious... has there been a recount in recent memory that has resulted in the Republican candidate getting more votes? These things always seem to break for the Democrats.

Posted by: wapo9 | July 1, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

"... If that was the best he could do in this election.. he's sounds like a one termer.."

Does this explain why Christine Gregoire was re-elected in 2008?

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

It was never an Election Contest.
It was always a Conspiracy to obstruct and delay.
The Play Book from the Republican Senatorial Committee said to take it all the way to the bitter end.
That's what they did.
The GOP kept Senator Franken wrapped-up in red tape for as long as they possibly could.
Who doubted that Franken would prevail when the decision was reached.
Coleman didn't have a case that was worthy of being tried by the Election Contest Court.
But the Law provided he could have his shot.
The Case presented to the Election Contest Court was the most embarrassing attempt to turn-around that election that could ever be.
Coleman paraded witnesses through the Court that were caught lying, withholding evidence and being in collusion with him in a failed attempt at deceiving the Court.
The whole case was presented in Bad Faith.
The unanimous decision for Franken along with being fined $7,500.00 and having Sanctions attached to the Courts Orders meant nothing to him.
The Mission was always to delay Franken from being sworn and seated.
So, the Coleman Team swept-up the arguments unanimously shredded and thrown-out by the Election Contest Court Judges, stuffed them in a plastic garbage bag and deposited it all on the Bench of the Minnesota Supreme Court.
On June 1st, Coleman asked the Minnesota Supreme Court to look at the size of the garbage bag they brought and to use the pile of shredded arguments as kindling for the fire they wanted set to Minnesota State Election Laws and the decision of the Lower Court.
The Minn Supreme Court didn't burn the shredded Lower Court Decision, nor set fire to Election Laws or the Constitution.
They had it all finely chopped-up into confetti and sent-over to the Franken Campaign Headquarters for today's rally, along with a signed Election Certificate and a note that read:
To Senator Al Franken. Compliments of the Republican National Committee and Norm Coleman!

Posted by: RickCoMatic | July 1, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Just what America needs another UNQUALIFIED LEFT-WINGER in DC....

Franken has unique experience though, he's a clown.

Should fix right in with lying Nancy and corrupt Harry......

Posted by: allenridge | July 1, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

The solution, I fear, is either to have no close elections, or worse, no elections at all. I'll take a pass on those, thank you.

Posted by: mark_in_austin

Sage advice. I think the same thing in sports. If you can't win decisively, and resort to blaming the Ref or some other trope, you are pitiful even worse than a loser. the fact is, it should have never been that close.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

If you read the decision, you cannot say this is a victory for "count all the votes." Repubs have no particular grounds to complain after 2000, but Dems need (and will) get of their high horse of indignation; Franken was in 2000 Bush's position and Coleman was in 2000 Gore's position. I guess US Supreme COurt justices are a little better at hiding their partisanship than Minn Supreme Court justices.

I don't think Franken's necessarily a one-termer. He was a comedian (and not a very good one) and a shrill partisan. You can't expect that kind of a candidate to pull big percentages; the wonder is that he won at all. He has six years to redefine himself, and he's no dummy, I'm sure he will appear a lot more statesmanlike in six years.

There are actually moderate Repubs in MN (unlike much of the rest of the country), so they have a good chance of fielding a candidate who could take advantage of Obama fatigue (which could be a factor in six years; I'm absolutely sure3 he wins re-election). So while Franken will be much more palatable to moderates six years out, Repubs will probably field another middle of the roader who could give Franken a fight if conditions are right.

Posted by: gbooksdc | July 1, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

duanelaw1 is correct about Palin and the handling of her family. But he is wrong about Republicans being about family values, ever.

Some Republican Party rhetoric is about family values. Republican Party politics are about keeping rich white people in charge of who profits from consumption.
All the rest is BS.

Still I was amazed when Lindsay Graham went on and on last Sunday about what the great family man and role model, Barak Obama. I'm still having cognitive dissonance. What was he trying to do, alienate "the base" or even more strange, the party leaders?

Democratic Politics have always been about family values, living wages, kids' safety, human service safety nets and all that. Republicans get all wound up about Terry Shiavo (?sp), abortion, killing moslems and all that.

Before birth and before death Republicans seem to want to do everything to protect life. But the time in the middle, other life on the planet, human survival on the planet...they really could not care less.
This explains Sarah Palin. True to this form, she is prepared to lead Republican politics.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 1, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Chris,

As usual, an extremely insightful analysis of the things that made Franken the victor. Love articles in this vein!

I must say, I was surprised that Franken kept such a low profile, but he is a very disciplined person--one tends to forget that it takes a greater amount of discipline than most people possess to go through all the steps of writing and finishing a book, to say nothing of the discipline required in a political campaign (remember Geo. Allen's 'macaca moment'? It was precisely that false sense of arrogant entitlement that allowed him to let his guard down--I'm sure Allen could just see himself coasting to victory; Franken fought a great campaign after a few early missteps and avoided many pitfalls).

Posted by: sverigegrabb | July 1, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Look the real reason Frankin won was because Obama was riding a tidal wave of support in a change election.. it's only natural that many who wanted Obama and change stayed Democratic across the board.. What I think is telling is where Obama won Minnesota by 10's of thousands of votes Frankin only won by only about 300... If that was the best he could do in this election.. he's sounds like a one termer..

Posted by: sovine08 | July 1, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

It seems Libs and Dems and ACORN (or whatever their new name is, lipstick on a pig, you know) are very effective at "discovering" votes long after the polls close. In their thuggish, gangster fashion, they deserve to win, having mastered this modern theft, in plain sight of the accomplice media.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | July 1, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Bondosan, the point is that you have to beat the competition that shows up, not the competition you wish were there. If the MN GOP & DFL were nominating candidates that appealed to moderates rather than partisans, there wouldn't be an opening for the Barkley / Hutchinson / Ventura / Fitzgerald candidates that keep taking 10-15% (or winning, in Ventura's case) of the vote.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 1, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

"How Franken won? ACORN manufactured votes!"

And the CIA is beaming instructions to your fillings, and the Queen of England is the world's biggest heroin smuggler.

Funny, it doesn't seem to matter how laughable the conspiracy is, the gormless 20-percenters on the Right just swill it up.

Hilarious.

Posted by: antontuffnell | July 1, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

"Red State -- FAT STATE!"

Yup, that sure explains Colorado!

Good analysis of this awful senate race.

Posted by: Kili | July 1, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

How did Franken win? It's an easy answer that requires little explanation... he got more votes. Sorry Republicans, you can't have the Supreme Court steal another election for you!

Posted by: kalex1975 | July 1, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

And of course, Ralph Nader would have carried Florida if it hadn't been for that pesky Al Gore.

Posted by: Bondosan | July 1, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Right. And if Bill Clinton hadn't run, perhaps Ross Perot would have beat Bush Sr. by a comfortable margin.

Heck, John Anderson could have been elected in 1980 if it hadn't been for Jimmy Carter!

Posted by: Bondosan | July 1, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Bondosan writes
"I've always felt that Dean Barkley's role in the senate race was an underreported side to this story. He carried 15% of the vote and without him, Franken would have won by a considerably larger margin."


Perhaps without Franken, Barkley would have beat Coleman by a considerable margin.


.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 1, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

May I interject something?

Red State -- FAT STATE!

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090701/ap_on_he_me/us_med_obesity_rankings

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 1, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

How Franken won? ACORN manufactured votes!
Isn't it funny how nearly 100% of votes "found" in car trunks and church basements after the election went to Franken??

Posted by: pgr88 | July 1, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

The markets are up this morning.

Call it the "Franken Effect."

Posted by: Bondosan | July 1, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

There's an interesting symmetry here. Coleman has now lost two three-way races with an entertainer (Jesse V, Al F). Before folks right him off for the open governor's seat, consider Mark Dayton's varied career.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | July 1, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

I've always felt that Dean Barkley's role in the senate race was an underreported side to this story. He carried 15% of the vote and without him, Franken would have won by a considerably larger margin.

Certainly some of Barkley's votes came from a "pox on both your houses" mindset, but Coleman was the incumbent, and he was soundly rejected by a healthy majority of the voters in Minnesota.

It's one of the reasons that I generally oppose third party candidates: they tend to pull votes from the major party candidate who is closest to them ideologically, and also contribute to an air of illegitimacy for the ultimate victor.

In any case, I'm glad Franken has been declared the winner. I believe he will make an outstanding senator, and will probably serve for as long as he wishes.

Posted by: Bondosan | July 1, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

"Franken's personal discipline did little to effect the legal outcome . . ."

Uggh. The death of print journalism has also lead to the death of grammar. Try "affect."

Posted by: scottjtepper | July 1, 2009 9:45 AM | Report abuse

bsimon:

In a 3-way race, the anti-incumbent vote gets split among the challengers. Franken would have won easily in a 2-man race against Coleman. A run-off election could have proved this months ago, and Coleman's legal challenges just made him less electable in the meanwhile.

Let Franken get to work, and let the chips fall where they may in 2014.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | July 1, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

mikeinmidland writes
"The fact that Coleman, as a sitting senator in a swing state, couldn't hold on to his seat against a political newcomer is an indictment against his performance."

In three statewide runs, Coleman lost to a professional wrestler, beat a dead guy and lost to a satirist/comedian. Maybe its his performance, maybe he's just not a good match for Minnesota.

On the flip side, Franken way underperformed in the state. Obama won the state easily; Klobuchar won by a huge margin two years ago. So... Sen Franken has a short five years to acquit himself as an able representative of Minnesota in Washington. In the meantime, the state GOP will be grooming potential challengers for that seat. If Rep Paulsen (freshman in MN 3) wins in 2010 & 2012, will he aim for the senate in 2014? Or will one of the many state legislators lining up for the Gov race in 2010 start thinking harder about a Senate bid? The way its looking, Klobuchar will not be vulnerable in 2012; the savvy challengers will wait for Franken's reelection to make their bid.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 1, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Interesting story on the feud over Palin. I'll assume Kristol is wrong, because he always is.
And about Jacko- he's called that because he was wacko. Get over it.

Posted by: justmike | July 1, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

I always thought Sarah Palin should have said no when asked to be the Vice Presidential candidate. She knew she had a teenage daughter at home who was pregnant. That is one of the harder things to do, have a child when both parents are teenagers and still in high school. Bristol needed a lot of love and support to make it work. Instead, her parents first tried to run the father, Levi, off, and then, when they needed him, had him take the stage, and after the loss, they ran Levi off again. Like it or not, Levi was the boy/man their daughter chose to have a child with. They should have accepted him into the family and worked at keeping them together so the child will grow up in a two-parent household. It used to be that the Republicans were the party of family values.

Posted by: duanelaw1 | July 1, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse


The fact that Coleman, as a sitting senator in a swing state, couldn't hold on to his seat against a political newcomer is an indictment against his performance.

I am happy for the citizens of Minnesota that Coleman saw fit to finally concede this election by not taking it to the US Supreme Court. That's the first step in his rehabilitation as a public figure.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | July 1, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Wow. Maybe Iran should ask that the UN come in and review the irregularities in vote counting in the state of MN???? One precinct counts votes that were not at the precinct and another does not count the votes. Where did this come from? Are we watching WWF on TV...fix is in???

Posted by: jhpbriton | July 1, 2009 8:55 AM | Report abuse

As scandal-consumed mainstream journos serve up bread and circuses...

FED-FUNDED VIGILANTE 'GESTAPO' DEPLOYS COMMUNITY STALKERS,
SILENT MICROWAVE DIRECTED ENERGY WEAPONS TO PERSECUTE,
TORTURE THOUSANDS OF UNJUSTLY TARGETED AMERICANS.

• When will the media, Congress, Team Obama wake up and smell the police state?


Democracy and the rule of law are being subverted at the grassroots by a government-enabled and directed extrajudicial targeting and punishment "matrix."

The government has weaponized the electromagnetic spectrum, enabling the silent, high-tech torture of unjustly targeted American citizens...

...what victims describe as a slow and methodical genocide -- or politicide, the elimination of political opposition via extreme prejudice.

Victims cry out for justice. Officials invoke the "Gulag" tactic of writing them off as "delusional."

But despite a slander and disinformation campaign by powerful, secretive agencies desperate to keep the mainstream media distracted and intimidated, the truth is getting out -- right HERE:


http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

http://nowpublic.com/world/domestic-torture-radiation-weaponry-americas-horrific-shame

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://My.NowPublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | July 1, 2009 8:27 AM | Report abuse

-It's obvious Sanford just wants to be in Argentina. He should just go.

-The MN SCt opinion says that the votes that weren't counted were irregular under the voting laws. Repubs only wanted them counted because they thought they could help Coleman. The idea that anything was stolen is ridic.

-The fight over Palin and last year's election --just Wow. What a mess that campaign must have been. And Bill Kristol has a weird thing for Palin -- maybe because he was one of her first supporters and turns out she was wrong, oh so wrong for VP pick. But then again, when is Kristol ever right?

-Wish ya wouldn't call him Jacko.

Posted by: msame | July 1, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Minnesota election process is very clear and orderly. As a recount volunteer it was impressive to watch all the painstaking work put in by the Secretary of State's offices and all the anonymous county employess-Democracy at its finest if not at its fastest!

Posted by: babloom | July 1, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for many diverting links this morning, CC.

I have participated in two election contests [local] and can say that no one ever knows God's truth in a close shave of an election. The other fact is, as you say, that the person with the lead after the official canvass will probably win.

At every point thereafter, the partisans of the loser will believe "[they] wuz robbed"! The solution, I fear, is either to have no close elections, or worse, no elections at all. I'll take a pass on those, thank you.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | July 1, 2009 8:08 AM | Report abuse

to you dems, you made sure votes were not counted...
shame on you...

Posted by: DwightCollins | July 1, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

no offense but the dems stole this election...
how soon before franken gets bored and falls asleep at his desk on the senate floor...
how soon before he either resigns or kills himself...
after all he went from being himself to being 1 in 100...
and under rules where he can't be vulgar towards any of his fellow senators...

Posted by: DwightCollins | July 1, 2009 7:48 AM | Report abuse

Now we will see if the democratic party is big enough to overlook the vitriol of republican talk radio and their attempt to cover up years of criminal activity and just get on with the repair of the American flag in the eyes of the world and more importantly, in the eyes of real Americans, the working class.

Posted by: anOPINIONATEDsob | July 1, 2009 7:25 AM | Report abuse

Great analysis of the Franken "win". Interesting that it is focused on the end game that has little to do with winning votes that we normally associate with earning a seat in a legislative body.

Obviously almost as significant as the legal wrangles that had Bush coming out over Gore, with the filibuster-proof Senate. But I am not hearing the charges of minority stolen votes that Florida gave us.

The Republicans don't know how to street fight -- either for a Senate seat or to prevent a take over every aspect of the country. We desperately need checks and balances -- and what we get from the GOP is a serial philanderer from South Carolina. If they don't improve soon, we are going to wake up to a royal Washington leading the Peoples Democratic Republic of America.

Posted by: tommariner | July 1, 2009 7:16 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations Senator Franken!

Franken also won because Coleman was too tied to Bush (despite his attempts to make it seem otherwise)

Posted by: RickJ | July 1, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

Franken's victory was not that close when compared to Bush's 2000 Florida win over Gore. Franken's post-election conduct was irrelevant. He won solely because he got more votes than Coleman. The Republicans don't like democracy in action so they tied this matter up in bogus court cases.

Posted by: Ozonecowboy | July 1, 2009 6:42 AM | Report abuse

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