Gee, I hardly know where to start.
Senator (and I use the word in the lightest, fluffiest sense) Al Franken (D-Clownville) made his public debut at the Sonia Sotomayor confirmation hearings yesterday. Franken’s entry into the Senate has been so low key most commentators were surprised to see him on the dias with the rest of the Judiciary committee.
I had no idea myself — although I was sure Al would beat a hasty path to Washington at his earliest opportunity. He didn’t disappoint in that respect, although he did so in every other possible way:
- During his opening statements, Franken immediately began to call attention to himself by noting “this is my fifth day in office.” (Yeah, thanks for the update, Al.)
- Taking an unusually Republican tack, Franken expressed disdain at “activist judges,” which surely made the toes of his fellow Democraps curl right up.
- This apparently slipped right by Arlen Specter, whom the Dems had paired up with Franken to attempt to keep Al out of trouble.
- Franken also managed to work in references to Massachusetts Senator Teddy Kennedy and former Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone, whose memorial service the Dems managed to turn into a circus a few years ago.
- Still, Franken managed to gush effusively during his speech, both to Sotomayor whom he called “the best qualified candidate in history”, and the other committee members, “calling it ‘an incredible honor’ to be part of the committee. An aide said Franken is thrilled to be able to take part in the process.”
- Sean Hannnity pointed out on his Fox News TV show last night that during his speech Franken managed to refer to himself 41 times, while only mentioning Sotomayor (the alleged reason they were all there) only 14 times.
Franken’s “photo opportunity” with Sotomayor on Thursday attracted such a huge throng of reporters that some were inadvertently barred from his office. One staffer called the crush of media “insane.”
The new senator took no questions, but released a statement after the meeting saying he is “thrilled” to participate in the confirmation process. He praised Sotomayor’s experience and nodded to her “humble “life story.
I may set my DVR for Wednesday’s confirmation hearings just to hear his questions. I have great faith he’ll manage to screw it up somehow.