Franken vs. Coleman: Who’s Winning

That, and other news, in today’s Political Panorama.

There is one remaining Senate race outstanding, but it’s anyone’s guess as to when it can be resolved. In fact, Al Franken and Norm Coleman can’t even agree on recount totals in their protracted race for a seat in Minnesota. According to Politico, Franken’s camp now claims it is winning by 22 votes, although the StarTribune’s official state tally has a Coleman lead of 295 votes.

Rick Klein reports on ABC News’ The Note that Saxby Chambliss’ win in Georgia could sap Democratic enthusiasm for a protracted recount fight in Minnesota, given that his victory sapped any hopes of the party gaining a 60-vote supermajority.

The Prop 8 Musical: A note about the Funny or Die! Prop 8 musical we posted earlier. It was written by composer Marc Shaiman, who was among the leading critics of Scott Eckern, the director of California Musical Theatre in Sacramento who gave money to the Yes on 8 campaign. Eckern later resigned. So it is no coincidence that the video is based in Sacramento. The director was Adam Shankman, a donor to the No on 8 campaign.

Inaugural Plans: More notes about Jan. 20, from the AP: Maya Angelou is writing a poem about Barack Obama’s election…Dionne Warwick will reportedly host the American Music Inaugural Ball…. Lou Gossett Jr. will host the Purple Ball, where Ashley Judd and Patricia Arquette are among the expected guests….Human Rights Campaign Foundation will also throw a party with Cyndi Lauper, Melissa Etheridge and others.

RN Redux: Roger Simon writes in the Politico that Richard Nixon is “hot again.” There’s “Frost/Nixon,” which opens on Friday, but also yesterday’s release of even more Nixon tapes, more than 34 years after he resigned from office. He quotes James Reston Jr., an advisor on the film who worked with David Frost on the interviews. Reston says, “The younger generation feels Richard Nixon was railroaded out of office and what he did was trivial compared to what George W. Bush did.” Simon also writes, “The movie ends with Nixon a little sad and very alone, looking out at the Pacific Ocean from his estate in San Clemente. But Ron Howard had shot an alternate ending in which Nixon does a funny little piece of business with a pair of loafers given to him by Frost. When Howard tested that ending with audiences, they loved it. But people wrote on their comment cards that they loved it because it showed how Nixon had “changed” and how he had become a more sympathetic figure. So Howard scrapped that ending. Sad and alone is the image of Nixon that he wanted.”

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