Well, Norm, the jokes on you
Just want to congratulate Al Franken not only for his hard won victory per today’s MN Supreme Court ruling; but for the political class he has showed during the whole sorry-ass, post-election ordeal. Hard to think of another US senator, let alone a rookie, who has been the target of so much Rethuglican obstructionism, and yet who has it endured with so much political grace.
(Reports that Bully O’Reilly‘s entire upper torso exploded when the decision was handed down is unconfirmed, though he didn’t appear during his regularly scheduled spot opposite Keith Oberman this evening.)
How much stronger would the recovery bill have been, for instance, had Franken been seated at the beginning of President Obama‘s term? As it turned out, the Dems capitulated to the demands of the three Rethugs who did vote for it (especially Susan Collins, who engineered the “compromise”). The price of their support was far larger tax cuts and far less actual stimulus, a price that Paul Krugman says might yet doom it to failure.
As for Norm Coleman’s concession speech, though all noble sounding on the surface, who among us believes that he didn’t do it for crass political self-interest? Apart from the additional legal costs of pursuing the matter to the US Supreme Court (Coleman has already been ordered to pay nearly $100k of Franken’s legal bills), the fact that the sitting Minnesota governor, Tim Pawlenty, wants to run for president in 2012 will leave his office open.
Any chance that Coleman has of becoming governor depends on recapturing the goodwill of Minnesota voters whose patience he has strained to the breaking point with his protracted legal actions. Coleman has a long way to go before he can make them forget his flights into denial, obstructionism, self-interest, and hypocrisy.
But having already elected a pro wrestler to the governor’s mansion; having elected a former Democrat moderate turned Retuglican hardliner to the US senate; and now having elected a former Saturday Night Live comedian to replace him, Coleman probably believes that anything is possible in Minnesota politics and decided to cut his losses.
Expect to see him hired as a special Fux News commentator any day now.