From the Republican Party of Wisconsin –
MADISON – Republican Party of Wisconsin Spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski issued the following statement regarding the donation from Senator Russ Feingold’s Progressive Patriots Fund to Minnesota Senate candidate Al Franken. Franken’s campaign won Feingold’s "Pick A Progressive Patriot" contest and will receive a $5,000 contribution.
"As someone who has sponsored a Senate Resolution raising awareness of sexual assaults on college campuses, we are shocked and outraged to learn that Feingold’s PAC would donate $5,000 to Al Franken, who is under fire in Minnesota for joking about drugging and raping news personality Leslie Stahl. Feingold says his PAC is "˜dedicated to promoting a progressive reform agenda,’ so we want to know where joking about drugging and raping women fit in the "˜progressive reform agenda.’ Feingold should ask that the contribution be returned to him as Al Franken’s sick and twisted humor is clearly out of line with Wisconsin values."
"The Progressive Patriots Fund is dedicated to promoting a progressive reform agenda and supporting candidates across the country. – Senator Russ Feingold" (Progressive Patriots Fund website, http://www.progressivepatriotsfund.com/, accessed June 25, 2008)
Feingold Sponsors Resolution Raising Awareness Of Sexual Assaults On College Campuses. "[Security On Campus, Inc.]‘s efforts to improve campus safety got an important boost this week when the U.S. Senate took action to recognize September as the first ever National Campus Safety Awareness Month. Senate Resolution 221 "˜supporting the goals and ideals of "˜National Campus Safety Awareness Month” was passed unanimously Wednesday evening. "˜Raising awareness of the need for safety on college campuses should be a priority for all of us, particularly as freshman across the country are starting their college careers,’ said U.S. Senator Russ Feingold the sponsor of the campus safety month resolution." (Security On Campus, Inc. press release, http://www.securityoncampus.org/reporters/releases/09162005.pdf)
Al Franken Wins "Pick A Progressive Patriot" Contest, Wins $5,000. "A big thank you to everyone who voted for Al in the "˜Pick A Progressive Patriot’ contest. Because of you, that’s another $5000 in the bank as we wrap up this financial quarter! Our finance staff would be writing this themselves, but they’re pretty busy right now raising money (help them out and vote before June 25th for Al to receive the support of Sen. Barbara Boxer’s PAC for a Change!)" (Al Franken for Senate blog, http://blog.alfranken.com/2008/06/24/russ-feingolds-newest-progressive-patriot/, accessed June 25, 2008)
Franken Under Fire For Skit Idea That Included Rape Of "60 Minutes" Anchor Leslie Stahl. "In the 1995 New York magazine profile of "˜Saturday Night Live,’ [Al] Franken is described among a group of show writers sounding out a possible parody of Andy Rooney centered on a sedative pill bottle found in the "˜60 Minutes’ essayist’s desk. Franken and fellow writers Norm MacDonald and Jim Downey kick around fictional Rooney responses to the discovery of the bottle. The article quotes Franken putting an edgy twist on the discussion, saying in a Rooney voice: "˜And ‘I give the pills to Lesley Stahl. Then when Lesley’s passed out, I take her to the closet and rape her.’ Or ‘That’s why you never see Lesley until February.’ Or, ‘When she passes out I put her in various positions and take pictures of her.’" (Brian Bakst, "GOP blasts Franken over quotes in ’95 article," Associated Press, June 5, 2008)
Feminist Leader Steps Down Over Franken Endorsement. "Mari Urness Pokornowski of Cokato, president of the DFL Feminist Caucus, resigned Saturday when she learned that her group had endorsed Franken. As a mother and former teacher, she said, she didn’t see how Franken’s writings represented rural Minnesota values. The endorsement, she said, "˜was a choice made by the caucus, and once that decision is made, you have to make a choice where you stand, For me, my decision was to step down.’" (Patricia Lopez and Kevin Duchschere, "Franken sweeps to endorsement," Star Tribune, June 8, 2008)
Brilliance, Russ. Sheer, unadulterated brilliance!