Coleman Sues Franken in Minn. Senate Race
GOP incumbent says comedian rival's ads are defamatory, false
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 30, 2008 5:50 PM CDT
Coleman waves at the crowd before the start of his speech at the Republican National Convention.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Minnesota's tight Senate race has turned litigious. Incumbent Norm Coleman sued opponent Al Franken today for character defamation, the Hill reports. Coleman’s campaign says ads claiming he is the “fourth most corrupt senator in Washington” are false and violate Minnesota campaign law. “Our ads are factual and true, even if Norm Coleman doesn't like being held accountable for his conduct,” said a Franken spokeswoman.

The ads, which also accuse Coleman of getting a sweet deal on his DC apartment, stem from a liberal watchdog group’s “dishonorable mention” of Coleman in a corruption list. Coleman was never actually deemed the “fourth most corrupt.” The Republican has filed similar suits three times in previous races. “Every time someone tries to hold Norm Coleman accountable, he runs to court to try to weasel his way out of it,” Franken’s spokeswoman said.