Al Franken is, after all the Senator-elect from Minnesota, and has been since January 5, when the state's canvassing board certified the winner of the seat once held by Norm Coleman.
As you probably know, despite Franken's 225-vote lead after the recount, Coleman has kept the election in court and the senate seat in limbo.
Franken is the highest-elected radio talk show host in U.S. history: to give him a knee-up when he's finally seated, he's traveling the state listening to mayors and other citizens, and to Washington to bone-up on the senate's arcane rules.
"The best thing I can do is prepare myself in every way so that when I get to Washington, I will hit the ground running," he told reporters.
It behooves the Republicans to keep Franken out as long as possible -- it's one less Democratic vote in the Senate -- it's as grubby as that. Franken's presence was sorely missed in the fight last week for the president's stimulus plan vote.
But Coleman, alas, a soulless freak without core values has been having Washington fund raisers with the help of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, who are anxious to avoid strengthening the Senate majority.
Because of GOP partisan tactics, the people of Minnesota are short a senator.
"HELP!" said Minnesota's other senator, Amy Klobuchar.
Coleman's dim chances got dimmer Friday when a panel of judges ruled that he'd not yet shown a widespread problem with absentee voters being denied the right to vote.
"The facts presented thus far do not show a wholesale disenfranchisement of absentee voters in the 2008 general election," wrote the judges. (we get our Al Franken news as it happens on http://TheUpTake.org)
Most say the trial could last several more weeks.