Campaigning legislators have two jobs during August recess. First, they need to hang out with their constituents. Second, they need to like it (or make it look like they do).
Sometimes this is very hard. After all, it's basically a marathon session of back-to-back press conferences, except voters are the reporters, and you only get to break for air to stuff a hot dog/corndog in your mouth.
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) was probably having a grand time at Minnesota FarmFest today, but this photographer managed to capture him in an especially pensive or dour moment. As far as we can tell, he is probably thinking about how hard fixing income inequality will be, having flashbacks to what it was like on Capitol Hill this year or pondering all the hot dogs he has yet to eat this month. The world may never know.
However, Franken's brief look of despair was redeemed by the fact that a Reuters photographer also captured Franken in the most perfect distillation of what politicians should aspire to during August recess. August recess can be way more fun than the rest of the year too-- especially since it's a requirement that you wear a suit as little as possible!
If there were an annual calendar of politicians in campaign-mode, Al Franken would earn a place as the August photo for the next decade, at least. The laughing! The legal pad at the ready, perfect for capturing constituent concerns! The red carpet-ready hand-on-hip pose! The pancake catering!
Wait, the pancake catering?