Al Franken Has A Podcast

In this trailer episode to The Al Franken Podcast, Al sits down with Amazon’s Alexa (Siri had other commitments) to review highlights of the upcoming episodes.

Books for the new Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig school in Leech Lake, MN

New Bug School

For years I fought for the funds to replace the disgracefully decrepit Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig School up on the Leech Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota. We got it done, and the new school is a beautiful modern facility. The old school’s library literally consisted of two bookcases. The new library has the capacity for 20,000 books. Please click READ MORE to learn how to help.

A Conversation with Karen Diver (Audio)

Karen Diver

I spoke with Karen Diver, former Chair of the Fond du Lac Band of Chippewa and President Obama’s lead advisor on Indian Affairs. Karen speaks to our nation’s shameful treatment of America’s first people. And of the challenges facing them today. But, at the top, I tell the story of my First Pow Wow.

Claire Frances Franken


Franni and I were blessed yesterday with our fourth grandchild, Claire Frances Franken. Claire is named for my grandmother, Clara Franken, and for Franni and for Franni’s mom Frances Bryson. Clara Oppenheimer was a German immigrant who came to this country in the 1880’s. She married Otto Franken who died of tuberculosis in 1924, leaving Clara widowed with two boys. Fran Doyle married Donald Bryson in Portland, Maine in 1943. After Donald came home from the war, he and Fran wasted little time starting a family. One night in 1953, on his way home from a shift at the paper … Read More…

What about losing 40 seats in the House Don’t you Understand?

Democrats won back the House majority in the 2018 midterms, picking up 40 seats and beating Republicans by a total of 8.6 million votes nationwide, our largest margin since the 1974 post-Watergate midterms. Why? Health care. By a nearly two-to-one margin, voters leaving the polls said that health care was their most important issue. And voters in three states voted for Medicaid expansion – Idaho, Nebraska, and Utah! Back in 2014, only 36 percent of Americans had a favorable opinion of Obamacare. In 2018, a sizeable plurality supported it. What happened in between? 2016. That’s when the Republicans accidently won … Read More…


Pretty much everyone agrees that right after someone dies, it’s very bad form to say something bad about them. That’s why it’s admirable that Donald Trump waited a full seven months to say horrible things about John McCain. First of all, and I know most Americans feel this way, it’s a disgrace that McCain allowed his plane to get shot down, broke both his arms and a leg ejecting from the plane, and then was beaten and bayonetted by North Vietnamese before being dragged to a POW camp, where he was starved and tortured for five-and-a-half years. As far as … Read More…


About a month ago, Judy Keen, a political writer for the Minneapolis Star Tribune asked me to comment on how Paul Wellstone would feel about so many of his issues being adopted by Democrats running for President this cycle. I sat down and just started writing about Paul and sent her this.