On MSNBC’s The Place for Politics Thursday afternoon, anchor Andrea Mitchell repeatedly invited her Democrat guests to bash the Republican National Convention for it’s supposed ugly “tone” and “vitriol” towards Hillary Clinton. In two separate interviews on the show, Mitchell tried to paint this RNC convention as somehow worse in attacking the opposing candidate than other conventions.



Why are Republicans so angry at Washington? According to David T. S. Jonas, a onetime aide to Sen. Al Franken, it results from 1) “the expansion of economic and political rights for women, people of color, LGBT Americans, [and] immigrants” over the past few decades, and 2) the failure of Republicans in power to stop or reverse 1).

In a Sunday article for Salon, Jonas argued that “the majority of Republican primary ballots cast today end up conveying a kind of protest message: give me back my power, or nobody else gets anything…And that’s where Republican anger ultimately comes from…You are told that you can win every election you want, but eventually, you’re going to have to compromise your beliefs…And you, as a voter, hear all of this, and you proudly stand up and shout…‘You know what? Fuck that!’”



English-language networks ABC, CBS, and NBC and Spanish networks MundoFox, Telemundo, and Univision  covered the news on Thursday night that independent Senator Bernie Sanders (Vt.) will seek the Democratic nomination for president in 2016, but only NBC Nightly News chose to label him a “socialist” after ABC and CBS had previously done so on Thursday morning. While correspondent and MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell characterized Sanders as a “socialist,” Mitchell offered some fawning words for him when she declared that he was “not your typical blow-dried politician.” 



On Wednesday, CBS This Morning hosted Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) to discuss his opposition to the proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger but co-host Charlie Rose found time to press the liberal senator to endorse the idea of more comedians running for the U.S. Senate. 



The Esquire blogger says that the “populist” Franken showed in his recent re-election campaignhow you embrace the themes on which Warren has based her career.” (Also, it would “cause Bill O'Reilly's head to detonate in a gorgeous orange fireball.”)



The Minneapolis Star Tribune is known for its liberal tilt so it was a surprise that they published an article that was not only somewhat critical of Al Franken but also sounded positive notes about his election opponent. In addition, the Star Tribune also published the resullts of a poll that could be bad news for Franken.
 



Politico reports that Sen. Ted Cruz argues that parodies on “Saturday Night Live” could be illegal under a new campaign-finance constitutional amendment proposed by Democrats trying to cracking down on political speech by corporations.

“Well, NBC which airs Saturday Night Live, is a corporation,” Cruz said, reminding other Senators of all the satirized politicians, from Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan to George H.W. Bush and Al Gore.



Imagine the student association at your university wages a Twitter campaign to get the two candidates for the U.S. Senate seat to agree to a debate on campus. The challenger agrees but the incumbent senator declines.. Disappointing? Yes. But guess who the student newspaper on that campus lavishes praise upon? The candidate who declined to debate.

How does that happen? When the incumbent senator who declined the debate has the magic "D" next to his name as happened in Minnesota when Al Franken declined the invitation of the student government to debate his opponent. The student newspaper, the Minnesota Daily, after registering a barely perceptible bit of disappointment in Franken for declining to debate then went on to heap praise upon his overall record. Oh, and for his opponent who actually did agree to debate? Not a word of praise.



Al Franken is currently attempting to present to the general public the image of  someone who is willing to forge alliances with Republican senators as well as avoiding controversy by engaging in sweet corn filibusters when answering campaign questions. It is all part of his campaign strategy, along with declining to schedule debates with his opponent, to run out the clock to election day.

However, when he thinks he can get away with it, Franken will pull out the race card and basically accuse Republicans of racism for supposedly wanting to suppress the vote of "certain Americans" as you can see at the 3:07 mark (and after the jump) in this Hmong TV video. In stark contrast to the genial and confident Franken which is being presented out in public,  in the video he is bitterly divisive with an undertone of desperation:



So, Senator, will you agree to debate your opponent during the campaign?

Hey, let me tell you about this sweet corn. It is so delicious that you can't eat just one ear. So sweet and tasty that I eat them by the dozen. And since I still have to run out the clock until election day, let's switch gears to ponder on the issue of chocolate chip cookies. You can buy them by the bucket and float them in bottomless glasses of ice cold milk...



ABC’s This Week hosted Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) For his first Sunday show interview and used the opportunity to promote his 2014 reelection for Senate yet provided no critics for his reelection bid. 

Being interviewed by ABC’s Jeff Zeleny, Franken was hyped as having “the most famous laugh in politics. But these days, Al Franken is delivering a different kind of punch line.” [See video below.]



The vast arid wasteland known as liberal radio is becoming even more barren. Loose-cannon lefty Randi Rhodes is pulling the plug on her show.

News of Rhodes' impending departure came in a terse statement from Premiere Networks, which broadcasts her show through 35 affiliates -- "[We] can confirm that Randi Rhodes has decided to end her national radio program. We've had a successful partnership with Randi for several years and we wish her all the best for the future. Premiere Networks will conclude syndication and production of Randi Rhodes on May 16, 2014." (Audio clips after the jump)