Minnesota: Franken Fires Back at Potty-Mouth Hit

Posted September 17, 2008 at 6:40pm

National Republicans took issue with a controversial new Democratic ad in the Minnesota Senate race, as comedian Al Franken (D) hit back at Sen. Norm Coleman (R) for running a hard-edged spot targeting him.

Franken released Wednesday a testimonial-style ad titled “Why” to respond to a Coleman spot that targets the Democrat’s temperament by highlighting clips from his comedy routines that include profanity.

“I’m sure you’ve seen Norm Coleman’s ad showing clips of me in some pretty, well, passionate moments,” Franken says in the spot. “Look, I’m not a politician — I guess I get outraged. And sometimes I’ve gone too far. But my question is, with the price of gas and groceries and health care crushing Minnesota families, and Washington too busy taking care of the special interests to help — why isn’t Norm Coleman outraged?”

National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman John Ensign (Nev.) took issue with a Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee’s recent ad launched earlier this week.

The spot, paid for by the DSCC’s independent expenditure arm, features a visibly emotional couple discussing their late son, a soldier who died in Iraq. In the spot, the couple says they don’t blame the Army for their son’s death, but they do “blame the bad policies on President Bush and Norm Coleman, who voted for this.”

Ensign said the ad crossed the line.

“It obviously appears that this is a separate attempt by the Democrats because this is such a flawed candidate,” Ensign said. “It’s outrageous to blame a death of somebody during war on one particular politician. You feel terribly for the family, but to blame like that in an ad especially is over the line.”

The Gopher State Senate race is among the most competitive in the country and is expected to be a very close this November.