MN Senator Living in DC Basement

US Senator Norm Coleman (Republican, MN) is up to his hypocritical antics, again. After the entire wing of the Republican Party ridiculed Al Franken (Democrat, MN) for his recent tax troubles, Norm stepped up to the plate and should have silenced his crowd. Norm Coleman's DC residence is a 10 foot by 10 foot room in a friend's basement; but that's only half the story. The other half, Norm hasn't been paying his monthly rent of $600. Let the games begin.

Before I destroy Coleman, I'm going to point out a major oversight by the right wing when it comes to Franken's tax problem. Al Franken made an effort to pay his taxes, he hired an accountant like most everybody else, but the accountant made a major mistake. As a result "Franken paid state income taxes only in the states where he lived -- New York and Minnesota. That meant he overpaid taxes in those two states, but shorted the other 17 states by more than $50,000." [Source: MPR] Al Franken is not a tax expert; he is not running for 'US Tax Expert,' and he made a mistake, but at least Franken made an attempt, Norm can't make that same claim.

To begin the ridicule I'll reference the original article from the National Journal. The very fact that such an article was even published about Norm Coleman predicates a complete failure in even attempting to pay the rent. What's more is that his excuse is just terrible, "I can assure Minnesotans that while partisans will attempt to raise questions about the perception of my paying rent to live in a bedroom of a house of a friend, there is no extraordinary reason for my staying there other than it fit my family's budget." Let me get this straight, Norm Coleman is staying in a basement because of financial reasons; the $169,300 he earns a year as a US Senator just simply isn't enough for him to stay on top of his rent. So either Coleman simply doesn't have the money, or he wasn't responsible enough to just pay the rent. This presents an interesting scenario, take your pick; either he is struggling to make ends meet with an income greater than 96.87% [Source: US Census 2005] of the population or Norm Coleman is an idiot.

At this juncture I'm ready to name both candidates incompetent when it comes to the basic concept of exchanging money for goods or services, but Norm may currently have the slight edge. I would now expect certain right wingers (MN Democrats Exposed) to end their relentless crusade against Franken and his taxes after Norm's latest demonstration of hypocrisy. Now to drop a baseless right wing style quote: Norm Coleman is creating a pattern of not being upfront with voters. Actually Norm Coleman made a mistake, and so did Al Franken. As a result the discussion should shift away from these stupid distractions and move onto their differences on issues that matter. For example Norm continues to support the Iraq War, Franken supports a withdrawl; Coleman is not in favor of a gas tax that would generate additional funding to support infrastructure, while Franken believes extra money should be rasied to ensure our roadways are save after the 35W Bridge collapse. More on the issues in future posts.

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