The fall of Franken

From comedy writer to U.S. senator to political pariah

Sen. Al Franken.
(Image credit: REUTERS/Yuri Gripas)

"I did not grow up wanting to be a politician," Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn) said Thursday during a speech on the Senate floor in which he announced his intention to resign "in the coming weeks," following a flurry of allegations of groping and harassment. It might very well be true that as a child Franken didn't care a lick for politics. But for much of his adult life, he sure acted like becoming a politician was his ultimate goal.

Franken's career began in show business, when he and his creative partner Tom Davis parlayed their frequently political style of satire into gigs on the writing staff of the inaugural season of Saturday Night Live in 1975. Franken continued at SNL until 1980, then returned as a writer, producer, and occasional performer from 1985 until 1995.

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