The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

09 July 2007

Al Franken Senate Fundraising, Campaign Releases Figures


With Figure$ Finally Released, What's His Strategy?

A full week after his competitors released their quarterly campaign fundraising totals, our friend Stuart Smalley has finally found the time to disclose his latest donation tally.

But with the new figure coming in higher than that of incumbent Norm Coleman (R-MN) and his Democrat rivals, what explains the delay strategy? Previously, we wondered what Team Franken might be thinking.

As this AP report reveals, however, the devil may be in the details:

DFL candidate Al Franken announced Monday he had raised $1.9 million in the latest reporting period, more than Sen. Norm Coleman and Democratic rival Mike Ciresi.

Franken's take in the period, covering April to June, exceeded Coleman's $1.6 million and Ciresi's $750,000. Ciresi didn't begin raising money until May.

Despite the big period, Franken trailed Coleman in cash on hand, reporting just under $2 million compared to Coleman's $3.8 million. Ciresi ended the period with $625,000 in the bank.

Sure enough, Franken's got a big spending problem: all of that dough is burning a giant hole in his pocket. What happened to the money raised in the first quarter ($1.35m)? Does Billy Kimball have a campaign credit card?

This early in the game, isn't it hard to believe Al hasn't held on to more of his cash? Based on what we now know, he's saved almost none of the funds raised before the second quarter began.

If he blows it all now, what will be used to fund TV ad buys and direct mail pieces next year?

In the past, running out of money merely meant finding a new sucker to fund Air America Radio, but this time Stuart's up against nationwide competition for precious campaign dollars. Will he get a clue?

Frankensuckerfish: David A Lunde

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  • Last week, because Franken didn't say how much money he was raising, that was a sure sign that he didn't raise a lot and in trouble. Now that he announced he raised more money than Coleman for the quarter, Franken's in trouble because he's spending too much. Gosh, it must be great to be a conservative, because it's always good news!

    By Blogger Eli, at 09 July, 2007 15:40  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 09 July, 2007 16:35  

  • Franken's cash-on-hand is half what Coleman has. The big question: where is Franken spending his money? It certainly is not being spent on Minnesota media - just try and find a Franken ad on the local TV channels or radio stations.

    My bet is he is continuing to spend the money on a California-based Ponzi scheme to generate more Hollywood donations. But that well is close to being tapped dry.

    Time will tell the truth on where the money drain is.

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 09 July, 2007 16:38  

  • Eli--

    It's not always good news for conservatives, but when Al Franken is your opponent, life is good!

    Al is sort of like those tapes on the old "Mission Impossible" series that self-destruct in 5 seconds...

    By Blogger Missouri Show Me, at 09 July, 2007 18:45  

  • MSM,
    Life must good, Sen. Coleman has already reversed his long-standing opinion on the war. I wonder what views will be changing next! I admit I am not from Minnesota, but from New York. Years ago,there were many people saying similar things about Hillary Clinton when she ran for the senate. She trounced golden boy Rick Lazio, by touring the state, having town hall after town hall, and listening to NY voters. Many people derided her "listening tour", but it was extremely successful. I've read that Al is doing the same thing. Will he win? I don't know, Coleman is a tougher opponent than Rick Lazio, but I wouldn't be surprised if Sen.-Elect Franken rides the second Democratic wave into Congress.

    By Blogger Eli, at 09 July, 2007 21:00  

  • Benson:My bet is he is continuing to spend the money on a California-based Ponzi scheme to generate more Hollywood donations

    comming from a Fred Thompson supporter!! bu bu bu hollywood, bu bu Clinton's pardons


    unrelated but more importantly...... why is the right terrified of "progressive talk"???? simple... In 2003, progressive talk accounted for ZERO % of the market in talk radio, today 4 years later (partically because of AAR) it holds 10% of the market.. cons fear this fact. As bad as AAR programming has become it made a dent in talk radio, and now 10% of all talk stations are progressive, up from 0%
    This is why Maloney exists, this is what freaks cons out, it only 4 years, liberals are becomming more relevant on the talk radio circuit and the cons are crapping their pants.

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 10 July, 2007 09:18  

  • gee, MOP...If progressive talk is making such inroads, why do all the politicans want to make it even more.... 'fair'?

    Seems if they could truly compete, they wouldn't need the FCC in their pockets to 'level the playing field'

    By Blogger Sarah, at 10 July, 2007 09:42  

  • Eli:

    I was born & raised in upstate New York, so I have maintained an interest in what happens over there.

    Credit where credit is due: Hillary's "listening tour" was remarkably successful, and it insulated her both from questions ("I'm listening") and from flip flops (What I learned from listening was..."). Her appearance on Letterman's show with his pseudo "surprise" questions about New York state was also helpful for Clinton. (I'm sure few life-long New York adults know what the state bird is, for example.)

    However, Franken does not seem to have political savvy like Senator Clinton. There is a YouTube video of Franken at a Gay Pride parade in Minnesota where he fumbles with his reasoning for not favoring impeachment of Bush. I assume Senator Clinton in the same circumstance would have changed the topic to her talking points with finesse.

    By Blogger Missouri Show Me, at 10 July, 2007 09:47  

  • MSM,

    I mostly agree with your take on the Hilary listening tour. She did not take questions during that time, for the reason you said. But, she did eventually answer questions. (There were at least two debates). Also, I don't remember any major flip flops during that campaign, but there may have been, I'll defer to you.

    I haven't been able to see the Franken clip you mentioned yet, but his fumbling around answering a question isn't surprising. I liked his radio show, but, in a public speaking sense, he was terrible on the air sometimes. At times, he just stammered and stammered until he finally made his point. But, in a debate the guy is sharp and knows his facts. If it's Coleman and Franken, I will be looking forward to seeing those debates .

    By Blogger Eli, at 10 July, 2007 13:12  

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