Lost this week in the hubbub over the retirement of Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Russell Anderson and the ongoing hassle at the Attorney General’s office was the news that Mike Ciresi was dropping out of the Minnesota U.S. Senate race.
Actually, the way the Ciresi story got buried was a bit symbolic of his campaign in general. Despite his pedigree as a go-getter and an aggressive champion of consumer rights, Ciresi never quite inspired the table talk of his primary opponents, incumbent Norm Coleman, newcomer Al Franken, or even dark-horse candidate Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer.
Franken, for all his inexperience, has shown surprising aptitude when it comes to fundraising and engendering grass-roots support. In fact, as Minnesota Lawyer reported last year, a goodly portion of Ciresi’s individual campaign contributions came from within his own firm, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi — and that was before he dipped into his own pocket to lend his campaign $2 million.
Maybe Ciresi’s second failed attempt to storm the gates of Congress is a sign from the gods that his talents are better suited to the courtroom after all. Now that he’s no longer even in a position to play spoiler, it will be interesting to see if he throws his support behind Franken.