Hey, Minnesotans, miss Norm Coleman? Good news!

The former senator may be eyeing a return to politics

Published December 3, 2009 5:30PM (EST)

Nearly six months ago, Al Franken was sworn in as the junior senator from Minnesota. For his defeated opponent, former Sen. Norm Coleman, it was the end of a long, hard road -- a road full of legal challenges, ballot challenges, financial challenges and, one can only assume, profound personal challenges.

That’s not enough to stop Coleman, though. The current rumor, reported by Politico, is that he’s thinking of making a run for governor. This is an office he’s always wanted: Dick Cheney had to talk him into running for Senate instead in 2002. And with incumbent Gov. Tim Pawlenty leaving, apparently to run for president, it’s Coleman’s chance.

So the former senator is giving it some thought. However, one of his top operatives, Jeff Larson, is throwing some cold water on the rumor, saying, "I don’t think it’s something he really needs to do or really wants to do. I think he’d make a spectacular governor. I really do. I just don’t think he’s going to run." Another advisor, though, says that Coleman sees a gubernatorial race as a chance to "to put aside some of the partisan rancor."

And the almost-two-term senator himself? "It’s really nice waking up in the morning and reading the paper and realizing that nobody is trying to kill you politically today. I’m a public servant at heart, but I haven’t made a final decision on whether being the governor is the best way to do that,” he said. 

By Gabriel Winant

Gabriel Winant is a graduate student in American history at Yale.

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