MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Democratic Sen. Al Franken is hoping a second term in the U.S. Senate comes easier than the first.

Franken's big advantages in money and name recognition made him the favorite against Republican Mike McFadden. The former "Saturday Night Live" star was seen as a big target for Republicans after he won in 2008 by recount, but this cycle's race never appeared close and Republican-aligned groups invested their millions elsewhere.

McFadden painted Franken as a rubber stamp for President Barack Obama, a popular strategy among Republican candidates trying to oust incumbent Democrats.

Franken criticized McFadden's business background with ads suggesting his investment banking firm was responsible for layoffs and tried to avoid paying U.S. taxes. McFadden said those claims were false.