Thursday, May 29, 2008

Betty's Getting Nervous

Although the dawn often breaks quite slowly among the great minds of the DFL, it's finally starting to occur to them that having Al Franken at the top the ticket may not be such a good idea. Even my representative, Betty McCollum, seems to have figured it out based on this AP report (via Breitbart):

Rep. Betty McCollum, who supported the comedian's rival Mike Ciresi until
he dropped out of the race for the party's nomination for the Senate, complained
Thursday that she and other Minnesota Democrats will be on the same November
ballot as a candidate "who has pornographic writings that are

"Do they spend all of their time defending him, or do they spend their
time talking about issues that are important to this election?" McCollum told
The Associated Press in an interview. "The whole story was a shocking

What she's talking about is a 2000 article that Franken wrote for Playboy. It featured some of Franken's typically subtle prose, including this charming chestnut (again, from the AP dispatch):

At one point in the Playboy piece titled "Porn-O-Rama!" Franken called the Internet a "terrific learning tool," writing that his 12-year-old son was able
to use it for a sixth-grade report on bestiality.

"As a parent and an aunt, and talking to other parents, people are very concerned about the type of internet use that's out there, and how it has a potentially harmful effect on children," McCollum said. "Sexually explicit material is one of the things that parents are very concerned about, and want to make sure that they're steering their children away from."

I dunno. My son Ben is 12 and he has used the Internet in the past couple of days to do a sixth-grade report on Yankee Stadium. Guess my kid and Al's kid simply have different interests.

I have to admit - I find all of this very amusing. No one should be surprised about any of the things that have been coming out about Franken. He's never made any bones about being anything other than a professional smartass and the idea that anyone would have considered him a potential Senate candidate was always ludicrous on its face. You would have thought that the poobahs in charge of the DFL would have had the wit to do oppo on their own candidate, or at least a Google Search or something. They might have realized that there were some, well, issues here. Perhaps Ciresi will get back in the race, but it's going to be tough now. Somehow I don't see the DFL wanting to send Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer into battle against Norm, either.

Meanwhile, back in the fighting 4th, Betty has been hoping to get through this election without having to open her mouth. She has a highly credible challenger in Ed Matthews and I'm guessing that she would rather not have to engage anyone this time around, because she likely understands that any head-to-head comparison between the candidates will be highly disadvantageous to her. She essentially ignored her 2006 challenger Obi Sium and was able to get by with it, but that's not likely to happen this time around, because Mr. Matthews won't allow it. Betty is capable of lobbing highly scripted partisan attacks but she hasn't had to explain why she deserves votes in a long time. She might face that obligation this time around and that's not a happy prospect for her, especially if it means differentiating herself from an addled court jester on the top of the ticket.

Cross-posted at True North


patriot said...

Betty should be nervous, Ed is a great candidate. But the other organization that should be having buyers remorse is the MN Teachers Union who also endorded Franken.

Not only did they endorse a candidate who peddled in soft porn (his 2000 article) but someone who thinks its okay to do his fundraising via the Playboy organization? i.e. the Christie Hefner fund raiser. So, its okay to have a porn peddler backing you so long as he promises you infinite funding? Yea, the "kids" are not what the Teachers Union cares about.

Right Hook said...

There is also the problem of the "intelligence gap" problem for Betty that will become abundantly clear for all to see if she participates in a one-on-one forum or debate with Matthews.

Anyone who has visted Betty at her State Fair booth back in the early days of her political career when she actually had to show up in person can attest that the woman is an air-head. The best she could do when I asked her a tough, but legitimate, question about one of her stated policy positions was a deer-in-the-headlights look and a "I'm not going to go into that with you because you're not going to vote for me anywyay" retort. So much for intelligent discourse. I have since spoken to her on a couple of occasions and she appears to have an IQ that does not exceed her shoe size by all that much.

Ed will put the smack on her good if he actually manages to draw her out. It appears that her handlers recognize the disadvantage Betty is at going against someone with a 3-digit IQ and shields her accordingly.