Senate candidate Al Franken’s tax goof bites

April 30, 2008

CHICAGO – Comedian, author and former radio talk show host Al Franken, the likely Democratic Senate candidate for Minnesota, is paying $70,000 in back taxes and penalties to 17 states to make up for what he says were mistakes by his accountant.

State Republicans say Franken, who was expected to pose rtr1n2zo.jpga strong challenge to incumbent Republican Sen. Norm Coleman in the November election, is at fault. 

“Al Franken’s business activities must have a full, and complete public airing if he is to retain any credibility as a candidate for public office,” Ron Carey, chairman of the Republican Party of Minnesota, said in a statement.

Franken told the Minneapolis Star Tribune that errors by his New York accountant led him to overpay $49,253 taxes to New York state and Minnesota where he lived between 2003 and 2006, while not paying $53,404 in taxes to 17 states where he earned money for appearances and speeches.

The $70,000 is an estimation of what he owes, Franken said.

He and his wife, Franni, “believe in paying state and federal taxes on all our income,” Franken told the newspaper.

Carey said in a statement that Franken signed a disclosure statement showing he was aware of earning money in California and elsewhere.

Click here for more Reuters 2008 campaign coverage.

Photo credit: Reuters/Eric Miller (Al Franken speaks at rally in March)


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

AL Franken absolutely should withdraw his bid for senator for his huge tax scandal and offiensive talk towards women!!! Shame on him, does he have a mother,grandmother or sister or female relatives and female friends?

Posted by Jennifer | Report as abusive

Question for Al Franken regards his such offensive talk on women, does he have a wife? Does he have daughters?

Posted by Jennifer | Report as abusive

For Heavens sakes, Jennifer, grow up and get informed. Anyone who has worked in multiple states in a single year has faced the same problem Franken has: Who gets the taxes? Your home state asks for them and then the other state wants them, so you pay the other state and then take a credit against your home state tax bill. Franken did pay his taxes. He just paid them to the wrong state and it has happened to many of us.
As for his remarks about women, the man was a feminist and a crusader for women’s rights when I didn’t even know what a femninist was. Whenever I heard him on the radio he had more women on his show than anyone else. Who do you work for, Jennifer? The Republican Party?
And yeah, he’s married. I think his wife is named Francesca or something like that. And his daughter teaches school, I think disabled kids.

Posted by Arthur | Report as abusive