December 18th, 2009
04:35 PM ET
9 years ago

MN GOP calls Franken-Lieberman incident an 'embarrassment'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Franken is taking heat for cutting off Lieberman."](CNN) - The Minnesota Republican Party is calling out Sen. Al Franken's over his refusal to grant Sen. Joe Lieberman additional time to speak about the health care reform bill Thursday night.

"Al Franken's petty and petulant behavior on…the floor of the U.S. Senate is an embarrassment to our state," Party Chairman Tony Sutton said in a statement. "In just six months, Franken has established himself as the most uncivil and ineffective senator in Minnesota history."

The incident in question came Thursday evening, when Lieberman asked Franken, then presiding over the Senate, for an "additional moment" to conclude his remarks after the allotted 10 minutes had expired.

"In my capacity as the senator from Minnesota, I object," replied Franken, prompting a surprised Lieberman to ask "Really?"

Franken spokesman Jess McIntosh said Franken was merely following orders from his party's leaders, who asked that floor speeches be kept within their time limits to keep the debate moving.

The incident sparked a sharp rebuke from Sen. John McCain, who declared, "This is the first time I have ever seen a member denied an extra minute or two to finish his remarks."

Though the liberal Web site Thinkprogress reports McCain himself refused to grant senators additional time to speak in 2002 when the chamber was debating the Iraq War authorization.

Filed under: Al Franken • Joe Lieberman
soundoff (306 Responses)
  1. Jeff

    It's appropriate at this time that we are once again saved by a Jewish rabbi. Way to go Joe. Don't budge an inch.

    December 18, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  2. Malthus

    As a lifelong Minnesotan, I'd like to apologize on behalf of my state for Mr. Franken and everything that he does or says. (although in all fairness, he "won" mostly with money from east and west coast leftists.)

    December 18, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  3. Karen

    Whatever happened to Freedom of Speech?! How dare Al Franken refuse to allow Joe Lieberman more time to finish his comments! It amazes me that Democrats are all for civil liberties until it doesn't suit them. Franken is nothing more than a pathetic comedian. He's a disgrace to the Senate and should be sent back to Hollywood Land where he belongs. What a thug.

    December 18, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  4. Jean 2


    They continue to stall until we the public get tired of the maylay, and just want it over.

    We all live in America!!!!!!!!

    December 18, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |

    And the rest of the world seees this idiocy and goes to bed knowing we will protect insurrance companys &greedy bafoons before we care for our own! Good job CHRISTIANS!!!!!!!!!!

    December 18, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
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