No GOP Challengers So Far for Franken Senate Seat

Image: No GOP Challengers So Far for Franken Senate Seat

Sunday, 26 May 2013 02:06 PM

By Greg Richter

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When comedian Al Franken was narrowly elected senator for Minnesota in 2008, Republicans vowed to make him a one-termer. So far, the GOP has yet to field a candidate to take him on in 2014.

After multiple recounts, it was determined that Franken defeated incumbent Republican Sen. Norm Coleman by 312 votes.

Coleman says he won't challenge his old foe, and no one else has either, Politico reports, noting that the GOP most likely will pick between a couple of relatively unknown state legislators, businessmen with no political experience or conservative radio host Jason Lewis.

Businessman Mike McFadden has been seeking campaign space, Politico reports, but bigger names such as Rep. Michele Bachmann aren't likely to jump into the fray. Rep. Erik Paulsen already has announced he'll stay where his is.

Franken's seat had been seen as part of a broader Republican strategy to target weak senators in an effort to regain control of the Senate. But they've had trouble in that effort all over the country. Democrats, however, haven't fared much better.

Some analysts think Franken played things smart by keeping his head low and raising a big campaign chest. The stash of money might, indeed be holding off challengers, but the man he defeated in 2008 doesn't think the laying-low strategy will serve him well in the end.

“Keeping your head down is not necessarily a quality that serves Minnesota,” Coleman told Politico. “What have you done other than keeping your head down and not getting in trouble?”



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