Norm's new ad: lies to distract (Updated)
Updated: see Franken's response below
Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN) took immediate action to counter the bad news from Texas. A lawsuit filed in Texas alleges that Norm's good friend and major Republican donor Nasser Kazeminy used a company he controlled to send $75,000 in three payments to Hays Co. where Norm's wife Laurie works. The suit alleges that Laurie did no work for this money. Norm is in trouble because he is required by law to report gifts like these.
What did Norm do? He responded with Norm-speakTM. He associates Al Franken's campaign with this lawsuit without any proof. This is a lie. Norm is desperate to spin this. This is pretty bold .
Furthermore, Think Progress has pictures of the incriminating invoice. Watch the ad and see the invoice... and read Al Franken's response to this ad.
Here's the incriminating invoice:
Here's Al's response to Norm's lies in Norm's ad:
"These are made under oath in a lawsuit, and I do think that Senator Coleman is going to have to answer these charges before the election," said Franken. Independence Party candidate Dean Barkley says nothing surprises him in politics these days, and he suspects that Minnesota voters are so cynical about the Senate race that the allegations are not likely to have a big impact.
Update: Al Franken's statement about this ad
Here's an official statement from Al Franken that I received via email:
"Let me be clear: The Star Tribune has said that they didn't receive information about this lawsuit until after it was filed. And they didn't receive any information about this lawsuit from our campaign, period.
"This isn't about me. This is about money.
"This is about a man named Nasser Kazeminy. Nasser Kazeminy is one of Norm Coleman's biggest contributors and closest friends - the man who flew Norm Coleman free on his private jet for vacations in the Bahamas and Paris.
"This is about a lawsuit filed against Nasser Kazeminy by the Republican - Republican! - CEO of a company in Texas, a company I've never heard of. This is about a sworn affidavit describing a conspiracy to funnel $100,000 to a sitting United States Senator.
"And for Norm Coleman to try to deflect attention from this incredibly serious matter by attacking me with false claims is simply insulting to voters who have a right to know the facts before the election.
"This lawsuit in Texas? That's Nasser Kazeminy's problem and Norm Coleman's problem. This ad, and Norm Coleman's attempt to make it my problem instead? That is simply shameful.
"There are important issues to talk about in this race and important choices for voters to make on Tuesday. I'm not a politician. And I thought I'd seen everything there was to see in this race. But Minnesota really deserves better than this."