July 7th, 2009
11:53 AM ET
5 years ago

Senate Republicans highlight Franken's arrival in new Web video

The NRSC is out with a Web video that highlights Al Franken's arrival in the Senate.
The NRSC is out with a Web video that highlights Al Franken's arrival in the Senate.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Minnesota Senator-elect Al Franken's arrival on Capitol Hill some eight months after Election Day has set off a message battle in anticipation of the 2010 midterm elections.

"60," a new Web video released Tuesday by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, features campaign footage of Franken and invites viewers to hold Democrats responsible in 2010 now that there are 60 Democrats in the Senate.

"With 60 senators, [t]he Democrats have total control. No checks. No balances," flashes onscreen over the Franken footage.

The video suggests that Democrats have the power to push through legislation on a number of issues all with "no debate," because Franken potentially gives Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid a filibuster-proof majority.

"They own everything. . . . and have no onto blame now . . . In 2010, you can hold them accountable."

The release of "60" comes a day after Franken made his first appearance on Capitol Hill since his opponent Norm Coleman conceded a razor-thin race in the wake of a ruling for Franken by the Minnesota Supreme Court.

"A lot has been made of this number 60," Franken told reporters Monday. "The number I focus on is number two. I see myself as the number two senator from Minnesota."

"Democrats are not looking at Sen.-elect Franken's election to ram legislation through this body," added Sen. Harry Reid, who appeared with Franken. The Senate Majority Leader said that he hoped the Republican minority would take part in bipartisan negotiations on legislation instead of being what he called a "party of no."

Franken's arrival does not automatically guarantee Reid a filibuster-proof majority. Due to health problems, Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia and Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts have frequently been absent from the Senate since the start of the 111th Congress. Even with the Senate Democratic caucus at full force, with Byrd and Kennedy were present, every one of the 60 Democrats in the Senate would have to vote in lock-step to break a filibuster.

Related: Even with Franken, breaking up (a filibuster) is hard to do


Filed under: Al Franken • Senate
soundoff (116 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I wish the DNC will release a video called "NO." I'm so sick and tired of the GOP and their attacks on EVERYTHING. This is why they are no longer in power.

    July 7, 2009 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  2. total control. No checks. No balances

    wow, what a difference 6 months make, GOP brash cowboys to a bunch of cry babies

    really sad and pathetic

    July 7, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  3. leapfrog

    Nice to see the GOP hasn't lost it's tactic of preying on fear. I'm sure some yahoo farmer in West Virginia is quaking in his boots, fearing that Al Franken is going to storm his farm, shoot him, rape his wife and eat his kids. It was this preponderance on avoiding issues but attacking personalities that drove me away from the GOP.

    July 7, 2009 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  4. Marc in Virginia

    So, the Republicans hope the Senate fails. Terrific. I'm glad that "In 2010, you can hold them accountable." The Dems should get all the glory when they right this sinking ship with no help from the Senate Republicans.

    July 7, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  5. Matt

    Perhaps the Republicans should stop and consider WHY they are the minority in all parts of government. They are the ones now being held accountable for their behavior over the last 8 years.

    July 7, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  6. Mike

    The republicans seem to be making the assumption that the Democrats are a single entity instead of 60 different rational human beings. Just because they have a majority does not mean they will all vote the same.

    July 7, 2009 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  7. Grahame

    This kind of speculation wont do the Republican Pajama Party any good anyway. All they have are a few sexual deviants and Madam Palin.. It's a sorry sad bunch of losers. According to Time Magazine one of Sarah Palins first attempts when she became Mayor was to have certain books banned. That fell through but it just shows where her mind set is anyway. If the Republican party want to garner support in 2012 they had better look towards somebody who who does not believe that the world is only 6000 years old.. I wonder if anybody has asked Sarah Palin just what fossils are. Bet she doesn't know. That is apart from the rest of the Republicans fossils that is. At least Al Frankin has a sense of humor. I would suggest Palin gets one too.

    July 7, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  8. Bob (Illinois)

    That is a truly pathetic 'ad'. GOP: Party of the fear monger!

    July 7, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  9. changing my screen name to see if it helps getting my comments posted

    First of all, the checks and balances are great in theory, but in reality nothing gets accomplished in Washington without one party controling things like this. Bipartisanship doesn't exist. I learned this in eighth grade.

    Second, had McCain won he would be filling the current Supreme Court seat and all other potentially vacant seats (good chance for at least 2 more) with ardent, right-wing conservatives. And the potential seats would be current liberals. Where would the checks and balances exist there?

    And frankly, WE VOTED THE BUMS OUT! This is what we voted for. We are pissed with the leadership the Republicans have given us recently and to change things we've voted for no checks and balances.

    LIVE WITH IT!

    July 7, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  10. Ray from Nashville

    So what's new? The G-No-P has been blaming the Democrats for this mess since President Obama was sworn in. In fact, conservatives have been blaming this whole mess on Democrats efforts to make sure minorities were not discriminated against while applying for home loans.

    Fact is, this is still and will always be the Bush recession.

    Fact is, we have been heading down this path since the Reagan administration, when our nation was handed over to the interests of big business.

    July 7, 2009 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  11. Takeshi

    Goodness the GOP is really Treason. Dont they have work to do. Hold who accountable?????? What the HELL have they done. in the past 6 months. 0000000000.

    think people.

    July 7, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  12. Ryan Wing

    They own everything because republicans messed up the last 8 years. If republicans want to get ahead they need to stop being yes-men to the party ideals and start thinking independently.

    While Bush was in office the majority of Republicans voted with his policies every time. Democrats never vote 100% for something – 60 means nothing.

    July 7, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  13. R Swain

    The GOP offer no solution to the problens they created.

    July 7, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  14. Mike from KC

    Gee, I guess the Republican members of Congress forget when they controlled everything with no checks and balances!
    Sounds like the GOP is suffering from a case of Alzheimers!

    July 7, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  15. gt

    well the question is , are you better off now ,, or last 4 th of july ... i think last 4 th was better ,,,, since the election in nov. the democrats are in power,,,now there in the hot seat with franken and his posey running the show,,,

    July 7, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  16. Jonathan

    Anyone else see that screenshot of 'They Own Everything' and instantly think of a Nazi propaganda video?

    July 7, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  17. Dave Murrow

    Yes, you can hold democrats accountable. If they screw up. Just like the voters held republicans accountable.

    Just as we hope democrats learned from their overreaching in the early years of the Clinton administration, we hope Republicans learned from their overreaching during the Bush years.

    Despite the volume and intensity of criticisms from the fringes, the US is best governed from the center. Nixon knew it, Reagan knew it, GHW Bush knew it, and Clinton learned it.

    July 7, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  18. R Swain

    The GOP offers no solution to the problens they created.

    July 7, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  19. Proud Member..Party of No

    Outstanding ad. It's all on the dumbocrats and they are failing on every front.

    On behalf of conservatives everywhere I accept you democrat's apology for electing this nitwit as president.

    July 7, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  20. Jim in San Mateo

    The one No they left out was that hopefully, there will be a little less No in the Senate and a little more action.

    The Democrats still don't have 60 votes, a fact that the republicans conveniently over look. On the other hand the republicans offer no solutions, save for the actions that got us into this mess in the first place.

    July 7, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  21. Disgruntled

    BLAME REPUBLiCANS, BLAME REPUBLICANS! the yell of the land, however which party is sending this country the biggest tax bill ever seen.

    You democrats are also the blame for this mess! Let's see the democrats in Congress have been in power almost 4 years, and in six months they have put in place the biggest spending in world history.

    Economy getting worse, jobs loss, CONGRESS out of touch with most of America, the state of Minnesota elects a failed commedian as senator So much for hope and change!

    Let's agree on one thing that both parties have failed and it's time to throw old politician our and replace with new blood on both parties.

    July 7, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  22. Matt

    Translation: We're rooting for this country to crumble. It's all because we want the power again! We're willing to wait it out as long as you don't hold us accountable whatsoever for the job you elected us to do!

    July 7, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  23. Birch Barlow

    How long will Americans continue to vote for these two parties, both of which have time and time again demonstrated that they care more about themselves than they do America?

    July 7, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  24. Allan

    The party of David Vitter and Larry Craig should really sit down and shut up and take their well-deserved lumps.

    July 7, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  25. Anny

    And you wonder why the Republicans are in the mess they are in........the party of NO.........NO solutions, NO Ideas, NO NO NO.......and NO decent man or woman to run for President........at least Dems aren' t the party of QUITTERS...........

    July 7, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
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