“The Republicans, I think, at first were a little like, ‘Oh, he’s a satirist who uses scorn and ridicule against Republicans,’ and then after they got to meet me, they were like, ‘Oh, he’s a comedian,’” Franken told POLITICO. “‘He’s a comedian. He’s got a good sense of humor. He likes to laugh. I get it.’ And that kind of went away, that first initial trepidation, I think went away very quickly.”
The Lost Weekend Update Anchors
Al Franken (1994)
Senator Al Franken, who had been with SNL as a writer and featured player on and off for most of the show’s run, had his eye on the Weekend Update desk after Kevin Nealon vacated the position in 1994. He fought hard to win the job, but Lorne Michaels and the network chose Norm Macdonald over him. Franken felt so disappointed and betrayed that he left the show at the end of the season. Al Franken has long been a politically savvy comedian (recently parlaying this into a seat in the U.S. Senate) and his current event expertise would have been put to great use on Weekend Update, as long as he focused on comedy instead of using the fake news job as a platform for his political positions, which, let’s face it, is probably what would have happened.
More —> Splitsider
”Our warnings are no longer speculation. Google, Verizon, ATT and Comcast are about to turn the Internet into cable TV —- where their favored websites and content will move fast, and everyone else will be left without a voice. These companies will kill the Web as an engine for free speech and equal opportunity. It is time for us all to stand up or get rolled." - Al Franken speaking Thursday evening before an FCC public hearing on “Net Neutrality,” Franken insisted that the U.S. government cannot allow companies to write the rules by which they’ll later be forced to play.
more at rawstory
“I don’t know how many of you have been to New York, but if a building is two blocks away from anything, you can’t see it," (Franken formerly resided in NYC for many years)
Franken got in a joke, as well: “It’s a community center. They’re going to have a gym. They’re going to have point guards. Muslim point guards.”
“They (Republicans) do this every two years. They try to find a wedge issue, and they try to work it.”
Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) is slamming conservative opposition to the Muslim community center project near Ground Zero.
“On the campaign trail, Al Franken was wonkish — understandably so. During the long recount and legal challenge of his 2008 Senate race, which resulted in Franken’s win by 312 votes, people who worked with the comedian said he was intensely disciplined and focused, with nary a snarky remark, even in private.
The satirist died when the senator took office.
…Thus, it was heartening to see him make at least a feeble attempt at mocking this enfeebled institution the other day, grimacing during remarks by the dour Senator Mitch McConnell.
“This isn’t Saturday Night Live, Al,” McConnell scolded Franken. Franken promptly apologized. Months earlier, John McCain was upset at another Franken breach, when he refused to grant a fellow senator more bloviating time beyond his allotment.
“It harms the comity of the Senate,” McCain complained.
If ever there was a place in need of more comedy, and less comity, it’s the U.S. Senate.
Cobwebbed by senseless rituals, speeches which no one listens to and rules that make it all but impossible to act on the will of the people, the Senate cries for more ridicule, decorum breaches and old-fashioned wit.”
The Mirthless Senate - NYTimes