(National Sentinel) Political Hypocrisy: Washington Sen. Patty Murry and several other female Democratic senators critical of Sen. Al Franken’s sexual harassment nevertheless campaigned for one of the chamber’s most notorious abusers, Sen. Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts, as he faced a tough reelection bid in 1994.
As reported by the Washington Times, Murray has been quick to condemn Franken, a Minnesota Democrat. But she and other female Democratic senators elected in 1992’s “Year of the Woman” wave nevertheless were equally quick to support Kennedy during a tough reelection campaign against Mitt Romney as reports of drunken debauchery threatened to derail his bid.
At a Boston fundraiser on Nov. 15, 1993, Murray was joined by fellow Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein of California, Barbara A. Mikulski of Maryland and Carol Moseley Braun of Illinois in what marked “the first time the five senators have traveled together on behalf of a fellow senator,” according an Associated Press report.
“We’re going to be here for Ted because Ted has always been there for us,” Mikulski was quoted as saying in the Nov. 17, 1993, edition of the Lowell [Massachusetts] Sun.
Their efforts helped to salvage Kennedy’s campaign, the Times noted. However, “in doing so, they set a precedent under which feminists proved themselves willing to suspend their outrage over sexual harassment in service of powerful pro-choice Democratic men.”
It wouldn’t be the last time the apparent hypocrisy occurred.
In 1999, Democratic women came to the side of then-President Bill Clinton in fighting articles of impeachment originating from a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by former Arkansas state employee Paula Jones.
Of the five women who campaigned for Kennedy, only Murray and Feinstein still hold office. The Times said their offices did not response to requests for comment.
But both women expressed indignation over a 2006 photograph showing Franken groping a sleeping Leeann Tweeden as they flew home from a USO tour.
“This is unacceptable behavior and extremely disappointing,” Murray said Thursday in a tweet. “I am glad Al came out and apologized, but that doesn’t reverse what he’s done or end the matter.”
Even more confounding: Shortly after she was elected in 1992, Murray joined the effort to oust Republican Sen. Bob Packwood of Oregon, over charges of sexual harassment and intimidation from some two dozen women.
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On Saturday, Feinstein predicted that “we are going to have another Year of the Woman,” following a spate of sexual harassment accusations surrounding politics and the entertainment industry.
In addition, Feinstein joined the #MeToo campaign last month on Twitter, saying, “We will never end the harassment and abuse of women, especially in the workplace, unless we speak out and stand together.”
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