Laughs in Minnesota Senate race not from Franken

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By AP

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Updated: Thu, 21 Aug 2014 07:20:06 EST

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — In Minnesota's U.S. Senate race, the investment banker is cracking jokes on TV while the former "Saturday Night Live" performer lectures about financial products.

Republican Mike McFadden's early ads show him taking a punch from a pint-sized football player, joking about removing his son's stitches himself and questioning Sen. Al Franken's ability to back a boat trailer down a ramp.

Franken has so far played it safe with issue-based ads focusing on his accomplishments since 2009.

One communications expert said McFadden's approach makes sense for a political first-timer who needs to introduce himself to voters. Kevin Sauter of the University of St. Thomas says he expects the ads to get heavier as the campaign progresses.

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