Alan Stuart "Al" Franken is an American entertainer and politician who is currently the junior United States Senator from Minnesota.
Franken became well-known in the 1970s and 1980s as a writer and performer on Saturday Night Live.
After several decades as a comedic actor and writer, he became a prominent political activist and was elected to the United States Senate, narrowly defeating incumbent Republican Senator Norm Coleman in 2008.
Franken is a member of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party, an affiliate of the Democratic Party.
Born in New York City, Franken grew up near Minneapolis and attended Harvard University.
With his writing partner Tom Davis, with whom he had developed an interest in improv in high school, he was hired as a writer for SNL at its inception in 1975.
He worked on the show as a writer and performer until 1980 and returned from 1985 to 1995.
After leaving SNL, he wrote and acted in movies and television shows.
He also hosted a nationally syndicated, political radio talk show, The Al Franken Show, and authored six books, four of which are political satires critical of right-wing politics.
Franken declared his candidacy for the U.S.