February 10, 2005


Franken says he won't run for Dayton's Senate seat (FREDERIC J. FROMMER, 2/10/05, Associated Press)

Comedian and liberal talk show host Al Franken said he won't run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Mark Dayton next year, saying he was committed to his radio show.

"I believe in honoring my commitments," Franken said Thursday. "I agreed to do two more years on Air America radio."

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 10, 2005 3:58 PM

Radio hasn't had a dark moment such as this since they busted Alan Freed in the payola scandal.

Posted by: John at February 10, 2005 4:11 PM

What, was he trying to get a one-hour ratings bump? Is this ratings week?

Posted by: pj at February 10, 2005 4:19 PM

"I believe in honoring my commitments,"

Translation: I'll be suing for the balance of my contract once the entire network is defunct in a few, short months.

Posted by: John Resnick at February 10, 2005 4:42 PM

He must figure that a 2% share is better than 2% of the vote.

Posted by: jim hamlen at February 10, 2005 4:56 PM

Has any radio talk show host/"personality" ever won an election? Here in the Upper Left Washington we had one lose a race in Congress in '004 (from the left) and one lose running for gov in 2000 (from the right) . I know several in California have tried and failed, too.
So may Stuart isn't as dumb as he looks.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at February 10, 2005 5:03 PM

I believe Jesse Helms was a radio talk show host before he became a Senator.

Posted by: James Haney at February 10, 2005 5:18 PM

Jesse Ventura was a talk radio host for gigs at 2 different stations (AM1500 and KFAN) after he was a pro wrestler and before he became governer.

Posted by: ted welter at February 10, 2005 5:41 PM

Ronald Reagan

Wasn't Grams a tv or radio guy?

The thing is only conservative media personalities win.

Posted by: oj at February 10, 2005 6:23 PM

I forgot about the Jesses. The first was a broadcaster decades ago, a distant past era when Network Anchors ruled the Earth, while the latter Jesse... well, he does tend to show why electing professional clowns is not the best of ideas.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at February 10, 2005 6:25 PM

Jesse Helms was a TV commentator on WRAL-TV in Raleigh. Offered opinions, that sort of thing.

Posted by: John Thacker at February 10, 2005 6:30 PM


Posted by: Robert Schwartz at February 10, 2005 7:24 PM

Bruce Herschenson was a TV commentator in Los Angeles (lost to Boxer). I think J.D. Hayworth (R.Ariz.) was in TV news.

Posted by: Fred Jacobsen (San Fran) at February 10, 2005 8:04 PM

Rod Grams was a long time reporter and news anchor for KMSP-TV

Posted by: Ted Welter at February 10, 2005 8:32 PM

Rod Grams was a long time reporter and news anchor for KMSP-TV

Posted by: Ted Welter at February 10, 2005 8:32 PM

Several actors and entertainers have been elected to Congress over the years.

Franken knows that his candidacy would be treated as a joke, like Ventura's was. Ventura had some unique political dynamics going for him then that Franken (most probably) won't have in '06. He knows he can't win.

Posted by: Dave W. at February 10, 2005 10:39 PM

Ventura had a popular talk show in the Twin Cities, Franken has a talk show, listened to by a few old hippies, that would be considered a war crime if it were played for the terrorists in Gitmo.

Franken would be running as a Democrat. Ventura ran as an Independent/Reform candidate in a 3-way race. Ventura didn't need 50% to win, Franken would.

For all of his blowhardness, Ventura exuded fun. He looked like he was having a good time in the campaign. Franken is as fun as root canal performed by Steve Martin from Little Shop of Horrors or eye surgery by the 'opthamologist' Baby Assad. His campaign would be a preachy screed of tired liberal bromides that Minnesotans heard in a much more exciting and inspiring way from Fritz Mondale and Hubert H Humphrey III. His campaign would be run in a manner that said we needed Al Frankne. Jesse's was run to entertain us and because it was a hoot.

Posted by: Bart at February 11, 2005 7:50 AM

Thanks Bart for adding some eloquent words to my thoughts.

Posted by: Dave W. at February 11, 2005 9:12 PM