Senator Al Franken clarified his support today that he is in fact in favor of the proposed "assault weapons" ban. "[W]e should reinstate a ban on assault weapons," said Franken today in a statement.
But in 2008, when he was running for office against Republican incumbent Norm Coleman, Franken sang a very different tune:
Franken was, he insisted, an adamant believer in the Second Amendment.
"Look, I support the Second Amendment. I don't think we're any different on this," Franken said, looking at his Republican opponent. "I support peoples right to collect guns, to use guns for protection, to hunt--I don't think there's any difference whatsoever between us!"
At the time, Coleman responded, "That is a stunning statement to say that we are the same on Second--a stunning statement." The Republican added, "You've learned the political game pretty well in a short time," pointing to statements and positions of Franken's that were anti-gun.
Coleman went on to point out the fact that he was awarded an A rating from the National Rifle Association, while Franken received an F.
Franken went to narrowly win that election. But four years later, he appears to have flipped on the gun issue.
In an email today, I asked Coleman for his response to today's reversal by Franken on guns. "As I said in the debate--I found his statement of unequivocal support for the 2nd Amendment and gun owner rights to be a stunning reversal of prior positions. It seems he really earned that F from the NRA," Coleman wrote to me.
Mitt Romney announced today that former Minnesota senator Norm Coleman will be a "special adviser" to his campaign, focusing primarily on foreign policy. "[Coleman's] advice will be critical as I lay out my vision for improving our economy at home and strengthening our partnerships around the world," Romney said in a statement.
Former FBI director Louis Freeh announced today that the Department of Justice has closed its investigation of former Minnesota senator Norm Coleman and businessman Nasser Kazeminy, who is a client of Freeh's law firm. The DOJ "advised both me and Doug Kelly, who is an attorney here representing Norm Coleman, that they had closed the case and that they were not bringing any charges with respect to the inquiry," Freeh told THE WEEKLY STANDARD during a phone interview.
The names of those involved are quite familiar: Karl Rove, Ed Gillespie, Norm Coleman. But the tactics these conservative insiders are using are different. They are slowly trying to catch up to the left—by using its techniques as their own.