The Powerline blog points out that even more or less friendly journalists were under whelmed by Democrat Al Franken’s performance in his first head-to-head debate with his Republican challenger businessman Mike McFadden.
— Andrew Wagner (@andrewwagner) October 1, 2014
Franken now #10 on Roll Call list of most vulnerable senators. http://t.co/SEV6I1Rqcm
— Patricia Lopez (@StribLopez) October 1, 2014
Broader coverage of the debate is here. Media accounts have often portrayed Franken as anywhere from disappointing to decidedly low-profile during his time in Washington. If the take away from the first debate is he didn’t quite show up, that could feed into an increase in attacks from McFadden, looking to close the remaining ground between him and the incumbent.
McFadden was clearly the more aggressive of the two. During an hour-long sparring session, he repeatedly sought to portray Franken as the most-partisan senator in Washington.
Neither Obama, nor Washington are very popular right now, not even in Minnesota. That’s likely behind McFadden’s chief line of attack.
“I am running against someone, Al Franken, who has voted with President Obama 97 percent of the time,” McFadden said. “And as I’ve traveled across our great state what I hear consistently is people don’t believe that the president is leading in the right direction.”
McFadden later accused Franken of becoming “Washingtontized.”