Archive for the ‘Mike McFadden’ Category

Yesterday, I included a link to the Duluth News Tribune’s video of the McFadden-Franken debate. This post will include some of my favorite clips from the debate, starting with this one:

Sen. Franken’s response was typical DC bureaucratspeak:

Here’s what Sen. Franken said:

So much of the rail use is for the Bakken crude. Now I’ve been going to the Surface Transportation Board since I got to the Senate. Captive rail is something that I’ve been very interested in. I actually worked with Sen. David Vitter, the Republican of Louisiana, to get the cost of filing a complaint with the Surface Transportation Board, which regulates the railroads, from $20,000 to $350 so people can file a complaint.

Here’s McFadden’s snappy reply:

Al, with all due respect, your lack of an energy policy and the lack of an energy policy from President Obama has caused the rail car shortage. There’s not been one pipeline built. You haven’t approved any pipeline. The Keystone Pipeline has been under the review process for 6 years. That is crazy. That is too long. Pipelines are proven to be the most effective, the most efficient, the most environmentally sensitive way to transport oil. Until you start passing pipelines, we’ll have a railcar shortage. I know how to fix this economy. I know how to get us back on the road to growth and prosperity and you are putting Band-Aids as opposed to going to root causes. We need pipelines in this country. I want everyone in this room and in this state I am for pipelines. I will get them built.

The contrast in that last exchange is stunning. I hope the McFadden campaign highlights the difference between Sen. Franken’s answer and Mr. McFadden’s reply because it’s the difference between a Washingtonspeak and the voice of a leader who knows how to get things done.

Washingtonspeak is the way bureaucrats and politicians speak. Leaders talk differently because they talk like people on Main Street, Minnesota. The contrast is stark. When leaders speak, Main Street listens. When bureaucrats and politicians speak, people fall asleep or nod sleepily in approval.

Wednesday morning, Duluth saw the difference between Al Franken, the career politician who uses Washingtonspeak, and Mike McFadden, the leader from Main Street, Minnesota.

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The first debate between Al Franken and Mike McFadden is in the books. Suffice it to say that McFadden took the fight to Franken from the opening statements. Here’s one of McFadden’s statements early in the debate:

We can do so much better. I am so tired of politics as usual. That’s why I’m running. I believe that the single biggest issue in this country is we’ve created this professional class of politician and it’s killing us. And I believe that, in six years, Sen. Franken has become part of that profession.

Later in that same response, McFadden made this statement:

I left my job and I put my family at risk because I fundamentally believe that we can do better in this country. We have the opportunity to see our best days ahead of us by getting onto the pathway of growth and prosperity. And it begins with energy, education and effective government. We are sitting on the doorstep of an energy renaissance if we let it happen and get the EPA out of the way. I will get the pipelines built. I will get the mines open. That will allow us to grow at 4-5 percent as opposed to half a percent to one-percent that we’ve seen under President Obama and Al Franken.

Watching the two men on stage was stunning. Franken’s posture was terrible. He was shrinking back into himself. McFadden’s posture was that of a confident man who was enjoying laying out his positive vision for economic growth. Franken looked bored at times, upset at others. McFadden enjoyed finally being on the same stage with Franken.

After Sen. Franken responded to a question about bipartisanship, during which time he listed the bipartisan bills that he’s sponsored, McFadden responded, saying “one of the things that I’m going to ask everyone to do is watch Sen. Franken’s actions, not his words.” Later in his rebuttal, McFadden said “he has done nothing to accelerate the PolyMet Mine. He has not approved the Keystone Pipeline, which has been under review for 6 years. PolyMet’s been under review for 8 years. Look at his actions, not his words.”

When Franken said that some of the partisanship statistics that McFadden cited were from an article that said “Ted Cruz is the most nonpartisan senator”, Mr. McFadden quickly followed up, saying “Al Franken is the Ted Cruz of the Democratic Party.”

The next topic was about energy, pipelines and getting commodities to market via railroads. Again, Mike McFadden shined:

We’ve had over 1,000 days in Minnesota where gas prices have been over $3/gallon. In December, 2008, gas was $1.60/gallon. What I know is that, as a businessman, with cheaper energy, we become a manufacturing superpower. Again, we’re gonna be able to compete globally.

Then Mr. McFadden went on the attack, saying “Al Franken wants to get rid of the coal industry, which will ruin the port of Duluth. Half of the tonnage that’s shipped out of this port is coal. I was up at the Minorca Mine. They spend $1.3 a month on electricity, which is driven by coal.” Later, McFadden said “Al, your lack of an energy policy led to the railcar shortage.” That’s gotta sting. This stung, too:

Al, until you start building pipelines, you’ll have a railcar shortage. You are putting Band-Aids instead of going to the root causes. We need pipelines in this country.

Franken’s reply was pathetic:

What I voted for was to not circumvent the regulatory process.

That’s the definition of pathetic and defensive.

Later, on the subject of precious metals mining, Sen. Franken said that he’s got the same view of mining as the Range delegation to the state legislature, which is “let’s get this right.” Chuck Frederick, the editorial page editor for the Duluth News Tribune, then asked for McFadden’s position:

I want everyone in this room to know that I support mining, that I will fight for mining and I’m an advocate to get these mines open. The fact that this has taken 9 years and cost $200,000,000 in regulatory review is not acceptable. It is crazy. And I would remind you that the Democratic Party, in this city, 3 months ago, had the opportunity to put forth in their platform that they support mining and they didn’t. And watch Al Franken’s actions, not his words. He’s done nothing in 6 years to accelerate the review process for PolyMet. He’s written multiple times to the FCC and the FEC on communications issues but he hasn’t fought for miners. And he won’t because he’s attached at the hip with environmental extremists.

That’s a brief summary of the first 22 minutes of the debate. Mike McFadden gave Al Franken an old-fashioned butt-kicking. If you don’t believe me, watch the videotape. Make up your own mind. Pay particular attention to Franken’s posture while McFadden was lecturing him on getting pipelines built and PolyMet opened.

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Sen. Franken is more than justified in looking over his shoulder in his race against Mike McFadden. This poll shows the race tightening:

From the Magellan Strategies memo:
Q 8: If the elections were being held today, for whom would you vote if the candidates were Mike McFadden,
Republican and Al Franken, Democrat or Steve Carlson, Independent?
Mike McFadden 42%
Al Franken 48%
Steve Carlson 4%
Undecided 7%
The race for U.S. Senate has tightened with independent voters being the largest segment of undecided voters.

Currently, 14% of independent voters remain undecided (12% among independent men/17% among independent women). Among independent voters, McFadden leads by 6 points (43% McFadden/37% Franken/7% Carlson/14% undecided).

That isn’t the worst news for Franken. This is:

Among undecided voters, Franken’s image is an abysmal 21% favorable/66% unfavorable with 100% name recognition. This leaves him with little room to grow.

That’s pathetic. Saying that Franken has “little room to grow” is understatement. Franken doesn’t connect with people who aren’t his base.

That’s why Franken doesn’t do public appearances. If you don’t meet with potential voters, you won’t get their vote.

By comparison, McFadden is travelling all across the state, meeting with people in diners in southern Minnesota and with miners on the Range. Simply put, he’s accessible and personable. As his name recognition grows, he’ll have the opportunity to close that gap further.

I hope the McFadden campaign will cut through Franken’s clutter of bipartisan this and anti-war that. Sen. Franken’s votes haven’t strengthened the economy. Corporations are doing well because the Fed is artificially propping up the economy with ‘Monopoly money’ but families are getting hit hard with higher health insurance premiums and higher out-of-pocket health expenses.

Franken has supported an economy where high-paying full-time government jobs and low-paying part-time private sector jobs are the norm. That’s foolish. Sen. Franken hasn’t voted for the things that families need to get back on their feet. Minnesota’s unemployment rate is artificially low by way too many part-time, $10-an-hour jobs.

Minnesota needs tons of high-paying full-time private sector jobs. That’s an area where Minnesota stinks. Another thing that Minnesota doesn’t need is a rubberstamp for President Obama’s failed economic policies. Instead, Minnesota needs someone with job-creating experience. Sen. Franken fits the description of the former. Mike McFadden fits the description of the latter.

Finally, this won’t help Franken:

Undecided voter’s attitudes and opinions regarding Obama and the direction of the country are more in line with a typical McFadden voter than Franken’s supporters. Void some seismic shift in the political environment; expect undecided voters to break in large part toward McFadden.

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On a trip to Albert Lea this weekend, GOP Senate candidate Mike McFadden called Obamacare “a train that continues to wreck“:

“The biggest lie of all from the president and Sen. Franken is that this would make health care more affordable,” McFadden said.

With this week’s announcement that provider PreferredOne will depart from MNsure, he said costs are only expected to rise even more. He said Preferred One provided 60 percent of the premiums for MNsure. “This is not the Affordable Care Act,” McFadden said. “This is the Unaffordable Care Act.”

The DFL will cite people who now have insurance thanks to Obamacare. The reality is that many of those people were eligible for taxpayer-subsidized coverage but didn’t sign up for it. In 2012, 93% of Minnesotans were insured. Of those that weren’t, over 50% of them were eligible for taxpayer-subsidized health insurance. That means 96%-96.5% of Minnesotans were insured or eligible for taxpayer-subsidized health insurance.

That’s back in the days before MNsure made it infinitely more difficult to apply for insurance. Let’s remember, too, that PreferredOne didn’t get entirely out of the individual market. They just got out of the individual market that runs through MNsure:

“Our MNsure individual product membership is only a small percentage of the entire PreferredOne enrollment but is taking a significant amount of our resources to support administratively,” a company statement says. “We feel continuing on MNsure was not sustainable and believe this is an important step to best serve all PreferredOne members.”

In other words, MNsure, aka Obamacare in Minnesota, was so totally messed up that PreferredOne said dealing with MNsure wasn’t “administratively and financially sustainable going forward.”

McFadden said he has heard from residents who have seen 50 percent proposed increases in their health insurance premiums for next year and other small business owners who have said they can’t afford the increases.

Unfortunately, these people aren’t alone. Altogether too many of them are getting hit with higher insurance premiums than they got hit with before Obamacare:

This morning, in an exclusive interview with, Plombon went into detail about what’s happening with insurance premiums. What Mr. Plombon said is that some people who get their insurance through the small group market are renewing their policies. Thus far, Advantage 1 has seen these clients’ premiums increase from as ‘little’ as 30% to as much as 106%.

This isn’t a hypothetical situation. It’s a report from a guy who deals with health insurance for a living.

Mike McFadden is right. Obamacare isn’t about affordable care. In Minnesota, it’s easily proven as a significant step backwards.

Thanks for voting for Obamacare, Al.

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This Mike McFadden ad hits Al Franken right between his eyes:

Here’s the transcript of the ad:

I’m Mike McFadden and we need an honest debate about our future. [Graphic: Al Franken voted with President Obama 97% of the time, the most partisan senator in America.] I won’t vote 97% with any president or party. [Graphic: Al Franken is rarely seen in Minnesota.] I’ll work for Minnesota, not Washington, not Hollywood. I’m Mike McFadden and I approve this message. Minnesota just can’t afford an invisible senator with invisible results.

That’s a great ad because it turns Sen. Franken’s strategy against him. Thus far, Sen. Franken has worked hard to look like the no nonsense senator who gets things done.

McFadden turns Franken’s carefully crafted image against Franken by rightly characterizing Sen. Franken as an “invisible senator with invisible results.” Franken can’t point to anything where he’s worked with a Republican to bring people together. That’s why he’s the most partisan senator in the US Senate, which is quite a feat considering the fact that Elizabeth Warren is in the same Senate.

Perhaps Franken has kept his head down because of embarassing things like this:

After talking with a Supreme Court nominee about Perry Mason during a confirmation hearing, you only have 2 choices. Either you keep talking about frivolous things like that, which will lead even ardent supporters to stop taking you seriously, or you put your head down and not say anything to anyone until you’ve been re-elected.

Franken chose the latter option. He’s still keeping his head down, avoiding debates with the hope that he won’t embarass himself during a primetime debate that’s televised statewide.

There’s no disputing the fact that Franken has kept his head down. There’s no dispute, either, that Sen. Franken isn’t the brightest bulb in the DFL’s chandelier. He’s kept his head down because it’s the only way he’s avoided damaging himself politically.

If the real Al Franken appeared, Franken’s charade would be over. He isn’t a serious politician. He’s a lightweight who isn’t qualified to solve the biggest problems facing Minnesota and the United States.

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To conservative political junkies, the Minnesota Poll is seen as political graffiti. The Strib’s Abby Simon wrote this article summarizing the race between Sen. Franken and GOP challenger Mike McFadden. The headline will get all the attention but there’s some startling information that Sen. Franken will like. First, here’s the headline:

Franken gets the backing of 49 percent of likely voters, while McFadden gets 36 percent. Another 11 percent say they have not yet decided.

That part certainly will put a smile on Franken’s face. This part will wipe that smile off his face:

But that lead vanishes in northern Minnesota, where 55 percent prefer McFadden to Franken, who gets a little over one third. The number of undecideds also dwindles to 5 percent. The state’s Iron Range region has become politically volatile in recent elections, with fissures deepening this year over controversial issues like the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mining project that sometimes pit labor against environmentalists.

If that polling information is accurate, then it’s difficult to see Franken winning. If 55% of Iron Rangers support McFadden and those numbers have solidified, then Franken’s in some trouble. If that’s the case, then Franken’s got to outperform DFL norms in other parts of the state.

Last week, Ms. Simons called me to ask why I was supporting Mike McFadden. Here’s the quote she used from our interview:

Gary Gross, a conservative Republican from St. Cloud, says he’s indifferent to McFadden’s business background, but will back him for other reasons.

“At this point we need progrowth policies, economic policies, and Senator Franken hasn’t shown me that he’s interested in those types of things,” said Gross, 58, a self-employed blogger and researcher. “He’s pretty much gone along with the types of policies that have just kind of stuck us in the stagnation we’re in, and that would be my biggest reason for going with Mr. McFadden.”

Honestly, Franken has been a rubberstamp for Harry Reid and President Obama. The other thing about Franken is that he’s never dealt with economic issues.

Over the last 25+ years, Franken has been a mediocre comedian, a mean-spirited talk radio host and a do-as-I’m-told rubberstamp senator. There’s nothing in Sen. Franken’s resume that indicates he knows a thing about the economy.

Sen. Franken thinks that tax-the-rich is an economic plan. So does President Obama, Sen. Reid and Gov. Dayton. Sen. Franken thinks that environmental activists should have veto authority over important economic development projects. So does President Obama, Sen. Reid and Gov. Dayton.

Mike McFadden thinks that people who’ve been mining for more than a century know how to protect the environment while mining raw minerals from the ground. McFadden trusts Rangers because they’ve protected the land they live on for over a century. Most importantly, Mike McFadden knows how important the PolyMet project is to Minnesota’s economic health.

While PolyMet is the poster child for high profile economic development projects, it’s just the best example of a totally different economic philosophy between Mike McFadden, who’s helped create jobs, and Sen. Franken, who’s voted for policies that’ve kept us in this stagnation pattern.

If this race boils down to who’s most qualified to create economic growth, that headline number will disappear quickly.

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Based on his article, I’d say that Josh Kraushaar got a glimpse at the real Al Franken:

ST. PAUL, Minn.—I flew to Minnesota with high hopes of talking with Sen. Al Franken, and his staff said I’d get my chance during a “media availability” following a speech on the 50th anniversary of the Job Corps. But when I arrived at the Hubert H. Humphrey Job Corps Center, I discovered I was the only reporter there, and Franken’s deputy communications director—one of three of his staffers working the event—said that the senator was in a rush. Could I walk and talk on the way out?

So as we walked through the gymnasium outside toward the campus’s small parking lot, I asked Franken a perfunctory question about his work with job-training programs, and a minute later, as we approached his car, how he rated President Obama’s handling of the economy. “I can’t do that briefly, we have to run,” Franken said.

Then he got in his car and left.

Welcome to Minnesota’s junior senator, Josh. Now multiply that by 6 and you’ll know what it’s like to be an average Minnesotan. If you aren’t at a DFL convention or a carefully picked union hall, you won’t find Sen. Franken. He’s Minnesota’s version of the Invisible Man.

When I asked about the political mood in Minnesota, Franken said, “I’m not sure if people are completely pinpoint exactly why [they’re upset at Washington], and that’s going to be part of the campaign. We can do better. Even though we have a lower unemployment rate than the rest of the country, people are still feeling squeezed in the middle class, and so many of the new jobs aren’t high-paying jobs.” Franken said he had some “disagreements” with President Obama over how to best approach the economy, but he praised the president’s stimulus and proposed 2011 jobs package. And he emphasized he was focused on “middle-class jobs” and infrastructure spending, while also supporting unnamed “smart cuts.”

What’s interesting is Sen. Franken’s statement that he’s “had some ‘disagreements’ with President Obama. Let’s scrutinize that against this:

But unlike other Democratic senators in swing states, Franken hasn’t done anything, even symbolically, to distance himself from the unpopular president. A National Journal vote analysis conducted this month showed that, in the past two years, Franken has cast only two votes against party leadership out of 161—a 99 percent record that beats Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

It takes some doing to out-progressive Elizabeth Warren but Franken’s done that. He’s crazier than she is. Wow.

What’s apparent is that Franken doesn’t want to talk about his voting for the ACA, which is a disaster both in Minnesota and nationally. The Affordable Care Act wouldn’t have gotten to a final vote if Sen. Franken had the cajones to say that the ACA would make Minnesota’s health care worse and more expensive.

Sen. Franken won’t grant extensive interviews with real journalists like Josh Kraushaar. That’s because he isn’t too bright on the issues. Just watch Franken question Sonia Sotomayor at her confirmation hearing:

What’s frightening is that that’s the DFL’s definition of a serious senator. With performances like that, it isn’t surprising that DFL operatives are keeping Franken under wraps as much as possible. The last thing Franken’s consultants can afford is for the ‘real Franken’ to reappear.

Mike McFadden is right about this:

His toughest jibe against Franken? “Al Franken had a background in entertainment. I don’t think that’s a background that’s allowed him to be effective,” McFadden said. “I think he has no idea how the economy works. He’s voted part and parcel with the president, and has overseen the slowest rebound from a recession in the history of the United States.”

Al Franken’s history is simple. First, he was a mediocre comedian. Next, he was a mean-spirited talk radio host. Then he graduated to being Harry Reid’s puppet. There’s nothing in that history that says he understands that the Affordable Care Act has created 49ers and 29ers. There’s nothing in Franken’s history that says he’s got a clue how much the EPA’s regulations have crippled job creation.

In short, it’s pretty understandable that he’s being kept under wraps. If Franken were asked by a competent journalist about his economic philosophy, he’d quickly be reduced to platitudes and cliches. He’d quickly be exposed as the empty suit that he is.

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This year is the first time in seemingly forever that I’ll be voting in a GOP primary. That’s why this i the first time I’ve written a post announcing who I’m voting for in the primary.

The biggest reason why I’m voting for Mike McFadden is because he’s an unapologetic capitalist. While Al Franken was a mediocre comedian, a mean-spirited talk show host and a rubberstamp US senator, Mike McFadden was creating jobs. Mike knows the importance of regulation reform and tax reform.

Mike’s also been steadfast in calling for starting over on health care reform, this time implementing a patient-centric system rather to replace the government-centric plan that’s an outright failure. Mike wants a system that gives the federal government the authority to tell people the coverages their health insurance policies must have.

That’s because Mike knows that families, working in consultation with their physicians, know what’s best for them. Mike understands that distant bureaucrats can’t possibly know what’s bet for your family or your co-workers’ families.

Mike’s worked with enough small businesses to know that compliance costs, whether they’re tax or regulation compliance costs, hurt small businesses more than they hurt big corporations. The vast majority of manufacturing companies started as small businesses. Regulatory reform is essential to growing the economy.

While Mike McFadden has advocated for regulatory reform, his opponent this November has voted for the biggest federal regulatory overreach in 50 years.

Finally, I’d like to take time to say a little something about Jim Abeler. Most bloggers know him as part of the Override 6, a small group of GOP legislators who voted to override Gov. Pawlenty’s veto of a massive transportation tax bill. While it’s fair to remember that about Jim, it isn’t the only thing we should remember about Jim.

Jim worked with Steve Gottwalt to produce real health care reform before the Affordable Care Act wiped out their reforms. We’d be far better off if their reforms hadn’t been toppled by the ACA’s top-down, government-centric plan.

I’ve had the opportunity to meet Jim a couple of times. He’s a man of faith who’s had to endure what no parent should be forced to deal with — the tragic death of a child. Through that tragic event, Jim leaned on his faith, which helped his family persevere.

Jim, I personally wish you nothing but the best. I hope God blesses you in the days ahead.

Al Franken’s fundraising e-letters are getting more dishonest by the day. This is Franken’s latest dishonest e-letter fundraising appeal:

Dear Cindy,

There are tell-tale signs when a race is heating up. And all the signs in Minnesota point in that direction.

Polls have been getting closer and closer, prompting the Rothenberg Political Report to take Minnesota off its “safe Democrat” list. Outside money is funding attacks against Al. His opponent’s ads distort Al’s record of fighting for Minnesota families.

By themselves, each of these facts is alarming. Taken together, they can only mean one thing: the GOP is coming after Al big time, and he’ll need our help to fight back.

Team Franken needs to reach $200,000 in the next 3 days, and they’re about $15,000 off the mark right now. Help me help Al by contributing $5, or whatever you can, today.

Al is a middle class champion in the Senate. Which means he’s a special interest nightmare. That’s why a super PAC was formed with just one purpose: attack Al.

And in today’s post-Citizens United politics, where there is one super PAC spending money, there will probably be more.

There’s only one way to successfully beat back outside spending in today’s politics — solid grassroots support. That’s what Al needs right now.

And that’s why I’m writing today, to help Al get the grassroots support he needs and deserves. Give $5 or more to make sure Team Franken reaches $200,000 in the next 3 days.

Reading the signs is easy when you’ve been at it long enough. Fighting back against the special interests is hard.

Thanks for doing your part today.

Donna Brazile

Unles Ms. Brazile is talking about internal Franken polling, she’s lying. I’ve watched this race as closely as anyone who isn’t working for the Franken or McFadden campaigns. I’ve only seen a couple of polls on the race. I wrote this post about the KSTP-SurveyUSA poll, which was done in early June. We’re almost to the end of July. There hasn’t been another public poll since the KSTP-SurveyUSA poll.

For the record, I don’t doubt that it’s still a tight race.

Here’s another blast of dishonesty in this fundraising e-letter:

His opponent’s ads distort Al’s record of fighting for Minnesota families.

Thus far, Mike McFadden’s ads have focused on either policies or his biography. I might’ve missed something but I haven’t even seen any of Team McFadden’s ads mention Franken by name.

More importantly, though, Sen. Franken has fought for middle class families if they live in the Twin Cities. He hasn’t fought for middle class families on the Iron Range. In fact, Sen. Franken ignored the Iron Range on his campaign website and in his acceptance speech at the DFL State Convention in Duluth.

That isn’t the definition of fighting for the middle class on the Iron Range.

Based on what I’ve noticed, I’d say that Franken’s frantic fundraising e-letters specialize in dishonesty and paranoia. I don’t expect that to change anytime soon.

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Most of the political handicappers think Mike McFadden faces an uphill fight against Al Franken. That’s a fair opinion. McFadden doesn’t have the name recognition that Franken does. On the positive side, he doesn’t have Al Franken’s record of voting with President Obama 100% of the time.

This Bloomberg article isn’t an in-depth article on the race but it’s worth reading. Here’s what they think Franken’s strategy will be:

Franken, 63, already is drawing a contrast between himself and McFadden’s financial ties. He released an ad last week touting his “fight against Wall Street” that highlighted his 2010 effort to create an independent board to oversee the credit rating of financial products. “Wall Street wasn’t happy about that, but I don’t work for them, I work for you,’ Franken says in the ad.

Most Minnesotans think that Franken was talking to them when he said “I work for you.” He wasn’t. He’s always worked for the special interests that fund Democrats. Franken’s campaign website doesn’t mention the environment or mining. That’s more than a little interesting.

Franken’s silence is fueled by his hope that Iron Range voters don’t notice that he isn’t fighting for them. He’s hoping that they don’t notice that he’s repeatedly and steadfastly supported the environmentalists’ agenda. He’s hoping they won’t notice that he hasn’t lifted a finger to make the PolyMet and Twin Metals projects a reality.

“The Democrats are going to try and nail McFadden as the incarnation of a Wall Street fat cat, as they did with Mitt Romney,” Jacobs said.

Republicans, he added, “are going to paint Al Franken as President Obama’s handmaiden in passing Obamacare,” referring to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that the senator supported.

There’s no question but that Sen. Franken staunchly supports the ACA, aka Obamacare. On his campaign website, he says more needs to be done “to bring Minnesota’s tradition of quality, affordable care to the rest of the country.” The ACA isn’t a step towards bringing Minnesota’s health care innovation to the nation. It’s a step in the opposite direction of it. I wrote this article to highlight MNsure’s failings:

This morning, in an exclusive interview with, Plombon went into detail about what’s happening with insurance premiums. What Mr. Plombon said is that some people who get their insurance through the small group market are renewing their policies. Thus far, Advantage 1 has seen these clients’ premiums increase from as ‘little’ as 30% to as much as 106%.

Sen. Franken can’t afford to have statistics like this getting out because they’re proof that the ACA is a total failure. MNsure is Obamacare in Minnesota. If McFadden repeatedl highlights these statistics this fall, Franken will have some explaining to do.

This strategy might bite Franken:

Franken declined to be interviewed, both in person and through a spokeswoman.

Why didn’t Franken grant the interview? Wasn’t he confident enough to face some simple questions? Is he trying to run out the clock without saying something stupid? Candidates that hide don’t often win. It isn’t like Franken’s got a commanding lead in this fight. According to the KSTP-SurveyUSA poll, Franken only has a 48%-42% lead over McFadden. That’s tight, especially considering the fact that Republicans haven’t hit him hard with anything yet.

This race will tighten. It will be competitive. Franken has plenty to worry about. More on that later today.

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