The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

21 July 2007

Al Franken Campaign, Full Page Ad Purchased, Norm Coleman


Big Spender Franken Buys Full Page Ad

Who says Al Franken can't compete with the political world's big boys?

According to the AP, our friend has plunked down a cool $37,000 for a full page newspaper attack ad. No wonder his campaign coffers are so quickly draining.

Though he hasn't yet won his party's primary battle, the former Air America Radio host would like to be seen as Senator Norm Coleman's (R-MN) opponent.

From the story:

WASHINGTON -- Al Franken's DFL Senate campaign plunked down $37,000 for a full-page ad in Friday's Star Tribune of Minneapolis that tries to link Sen. Norm Coleman's voting record in the Senate to President Bush's unpopular Iraq war policy.

The high-profile attack is another sign that the political cycle is accelerating both in the race for Senate and president. Franken's campaign already has $2 million in the bank, and Coleman has nearly twice that.

Above a picture of Bush and Coleman standing arm-in-arm, the ad features a recent comment by Coleman, R-Minn.: "We are going to be in Iraq a long time." Under the photo, the ad says, "Senator Norm Coleman stood with President Bush and voted against bringing our troops home. Again."

That was a reference to a vote this week in which Senate Republicans blocked a final vote on a Democratic bill to force the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq.

The ad also includes this quote from Coleman: "When my colleagues on the other side of the aisle talk about redeployment, they are talking about getting out of Iraq. I'm not."

"You're wrong, Senator," the ad says. "Responsible, moderate Republican senators from Maine, Nebraska and Oregon put the interests of our country ahead of partisanship." GOP Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, and Gordon Smith of Oregon broke party lines this week on the legislation.

Coleman's campaign manager, Cullen Sheehan, said in a prepared statement, "It's no surprise that Al Franken's plan for Iraq comes in a full-page, partisan fundraising attack ad in the newspaper to raise money for his campaign."

Yes, with this one move, here's what Stuart has revealed to all:

Instead of demonstrating that his campaign might actually have constructive ideas and substance, Al's kicking it off with attack ads. Too bad he forgot to first define who he is and why he wants to be a US Senator from Minnesota.

Rather than save his money for when he'll really need it, Franken has continued the same big- spending ways we previously observed during his time at Air America. Why blow $37,000 on a single ad this early in the game?

When it comes to ad placement, Stuart's an old- fashioned guy. Newspapers for political advertising? That's a dinosaur- era strategy. For far less money, he could target Minnesota voters on a number of blogs and the ads could run for months. If that doesn't seem suitable, a TV spot that might find its way to YouTube would be far more effective.

Is this about sucking up to a newspaper that is expected to provide fawning coverage from here to election day? It is the Star- Tribune after all, one of the nation's most liberal newspapers.

With Coleman's bank account twice as fat as Franken's, the GOP incumbent is likely thrilled to see Franken blow his wad so early in the game. Keep it up, Stuart!


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  • Franken ad ties Coleman to Bush's war policy in Iraq

    Since the AP article regarding the Ad was from another paper, It seems that the Franken campaign is getting more for its $37,000 than just a full page ad linking Coleman to Bush.

    Face facts, Bush and his Iraq policy are not popular. When you tie Coleman to both ,in pictures and in words, it is effective. If you don't think people will be talking about the ad you are mistaken. Your response to it is proof positive that it is working.


    Would you care to correct the record from your last Franken post?

    Or are you going to let it slide off your front page, hoping more people will not catch your error?

    By Blogger Ezsuds, at 21 July, 2007 17:36  

  • Brian has been aware of the mistake for more than a day, and still has not corrected it. He even made two comments about how i should ask for corrections via different methods -- but no effort to actually correct his error.

    It really is astounding. This isn't a "mistake" about ideology or politics -- it's just about misreading something, and then using that misreading to make a point (which is de facto flawed).

    Brian -- what gives? You say I'm trying to undermine your site, but you're the one driving that train.

    btw: I agree Franken shouldn't have blown that on a single ad. but i would have gone to TV -- Political blogs are mostly read by folks who already have made up their minds.

    By Blogger Justin, at 21 July, 2007 18:51  

  • Gentlemen above,

    Well done in trying to hold Maloney to some ethical standards. However don't be surprised if decides not to demonstrate any.

    By Blogger elmonica, at 22 July, 2007 01:21  

  • Justin said:
    btw: I agree Franken shouldn't have blown that on a single ad. but i would have gone to TV --

    Good point. The circulation of the Strib (local rag) has plummeted along with the other left-driven newspapers across the USA. The conservatives and centrists have cancelled their subscriptions.

    Franken's ad is only being read by people who already support him.

    At least with TV, he has a chance of selecting a broader, more diverse audience.

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 22 July, 2007 11:51  

  • Benson:
    If you look at the studies -- newspapers aren't losing circ because of political ideology. they are losing it because of internet cannibalization. for example, i'm a left-leaning moderate living in greater boston. but i no longer subscribe to the globe. why? because i can read it for free online.

    ny times did an internal survey of "lost" print subscribers, and found that they actually lost more self-described liberals than self-described conservatives. moreover, the NY Post and Washington Times are both losing circ at similar, if not faster, clips. it's a business model issue -- not a political one.

    By Blogger Justin, at 22 July, 2007 13:04  

  • Only a plagiarizing buffoon doesn't realize that just as many liberals have canceled their newspaper subscriptions as conservatives. That talking point is so absurd that it demonstrates how gullible right wing listeners are.

    They even think that you if you copy the content of somebody else's work and paste it on their own blog that no one will realize that they didn't write it.

    By Blogger elmonica, at 22 July, 2007 16:24  

  • Actually, this does say a lot more about Franken's campaign. If he's starting out with attack ads this early, it is going to start wearing on the good people of Minnesota mighty quickly.

    The fact of the matter is that Franken is like a man who cannot have sex properly, that is...he always pumps off before he can actually get the job done.

    By Blogger Yomi Mizuhara, at 23 July, 2007 05:38  

  • What happens if Al wins? Will you consider that a good strategy?

    By Blogger AnonymousCoward, at 25 July, 2007 14:04  

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