Duluth is one of hundreds of cities across the country vying to win a free fiber-optic network courtesy of Google, and perhaps The Franken Bump will improve their chances.

Sen. Al Franken recently cut a video expressing his support for "Google Twin Ports," the moniker for Duluth's entry for the free Internet upgrade.

In a rare public bow to one of his past comedy routines, Franken revisits his role as the "Duluth Answer Man" in several 1980s television commercials promoting the city.

The video shows a 30-something Franken as the "Answer Man," spouting off random facts about Duluth. Franken the senator then explains that such a service is no longer necessary due to Google.

Scroll to the end of the clip for the funniest moment, involving Pamplona and smelt (I believe the tourist is played by Franken's comedy partner Tom Davis).

Hot Dish did some reporting and dug up a 1984 article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about the TV spots (somehow the Star Tribune missed the story...). The brief clip notes that the Duluth Convention and Visitors Bureau paid Franken and Davis $5,000 each for the commercials, which were aired in the Twin Cities.

and if you just can't get enough of the Duluth Answer Man...

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