Al Franken

Obama Onegs

01/21/2009
Washington Correspondent

It was a day of joyous celebration for the many thousands of African Americans who came to Washington to witness the inauguration of President Barack Obama, but Jews weren’t exactly slackers in the celebration department.

And Then Were None: Jewish GOP Caucus Down to One

Specter party switch leaves Senate with no Jewish Republicans

04/29/2009
Washington Correspondent

The Jewish Republican caucus in the U.S. Senate evaporated into thin air on Tuesday with Sen. Arlen Specter’s stunning announcement that he is switching parties because “the Republican Party has moved far to the right.”
That represents a huge boost for Senate Democrats, who were two votes short of a 60-vote “super majority” that would make it easier to end GOP filibusters, and for an Obama administration with an aggressive legislative agenda that has been slowed by Senate Republicans.

Minnesota Supreme Court rules, Coleman’s toast, Franken to be seated

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009 Eight months after Minnesota voters went to the polls, the state is about to get a new senator. And it’s not the old one – Norm Coleman, the Republican whose last appeal of the razor-thin election was rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court on Tuesday in a unanimous decision. A lower court ruled that Democrat Al Franken, the former Saturday Night Live comic, won the election by 312 votes, but Coleman continued to argue that an additional 4000 absentee ballots should be counted.

Specter forgets which party he’s in, endorses Coleman bid

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009 No doubt Senate Democrats are happy that Sen. Arlen Specter now has a “D-Pa.” next to his name instead of an “R,” but there will occasional second thoughts when the unpredictable lawmaker’s foot finds its way into his mouth. It happened again this week, when Specter seemed to forget which party he now  calls home. In a New York Times Magazine interview, Specter was asked if he cares that, because of his party switch, there are now no Jewish Republicans in the Senate.

Specter’s bombshell

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009 You can’t blame Jewish Democrats for being jubilant; not only has Sen. Arlen Specter’s defection to their side of the aisle dealt a major blow to Republican efforts to slow down President Obama’s legislative agenda, but it represented another symbolic swipe at a Republican PR effort that continues to insist the party is making big inroads with Jewish voters.

Minnesota voters to Coleman: Give it up, Norm

Monday, April 27th, 2009 Periodically during his six-month battle to win a Minnesota Senate race a recount showed he lost by 312 votes, former Sen. Norm Coleman, a Republican, has suggested voters should just do the whole thing over again.

Pro-Israel PAC goes to bat for Coleman in war of attrition with Franken

Monday, March 16th, 2009 James Besser in Washington It’s already the longest and most boring senate election in recent history, unless you love legal minutia, and it’s not over yet; a three-judge panel in Minnesota is deliberating whether challenger Al Franken, who got a few more votes, or Norm Coleman, who says those votes are tainted, will be sworn in sometime before the end of the 111th Congress.

New Gig for Coleman: Senator-in-Limbo Joins RJC

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009 James Besser in Washington UPDATE: a longtime pro-Israel lobbyist saw the blog item on Norm Coleman and called with this analysis: “He’s toast. You don’t take a job like this as a kind of temp.  This is the clearest indication yet he knows he’s not going back to the Senate.

Obama Inaugurated, Jews Party

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009 James Besser in Washington It was a day of joyous celebration for the many thousands of African Americans who came to Washington to witness the inauguration of President Barack Obama, but Jews weren’t exactly slackers in the celebration department. Inaugural events provided ample opportunity for Jewish machers to see and be seen – and for advocacy groups to display their political connections.

Capitol Hill: A Mighty Religious Place

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008 James Besser in Washington The 111th Congress will be the most religiously diverse ever, but that doesn’t mean every religious group is represented according to its proportion in the population.
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