Sen. Franken just had an awful week. First, he supported the DOJ’s lawsuit against the AT&T/T-Mobile merger. The unions are livid with Sen. Franken for not supporting a project that they really wanted.
It isn’t that he’s just alienated a major part of his political base. It’s that he’s drawn the ire of a progressive firebrand like Ed Schultz:
That’s where we are! That’s why I said the other day (pause), the country’s sick. Our political system is sick. And the Democrats are just as bad as the Republicans. And I’ll tell you why. I’ll give you proof positive! I don’t care how many friends I have and I think you have to get into this business realizing that you only have a very few people that you can really count on.
I will never count on Al Franken from Minnesota! He voted for the Bush tax cuts! And now he has motivated the Justice Department to block a sale of T-Mobile by AT&T which would mean thousands of jobs, jobs back to America. But, of course, he’s against mergers. And there’s a few other Democrats who are against mergers. The union wants this deal to go through! So I would like to know, I realize that Stuart Smalley’s office doesn’t do national interviews, but maybe they can provide us with the pro forma that they used to come to the conclusion that this was a bad deal and it was going to hurt jobs when the union says it will create jobs!
Having Ed Schultz say that he’ll “never count on Al Franken” again isn’t a little ripple in the pond. This is the political equivalent of having Sean Hannity say that Susan Collins has to go. For the record, Hannity hasn’t said anything like that about Sen. Collins.
If President Obama is defeated in 2012, which is looking more likely, then it’s a good possibility that 2014 will be another difficult election cycle for Democrats.
Sen. Franken will be pitted against a top candidate who’ll raise fists full of money. If Sen. Franken’s staunchest allies are still upset with him, he’s history. Even if Sen. Franken has mended the rift between his campaign and his staunchest allies, he’ll still face an uphill fight. If the media isn’t surrounding him with a Klobuchar-like cocoon, he’ll be in difficult shape.
Sen. Franken is making alot of mistakes that he can’t afford to make. Having a leader of the progressive media say he doesn’t trust you is something that isn’t easily dismissed. Making decisions that your political base is furious with you about is foolish.
Those are the types of mistakes that wind up costing incumbents elections.