(National Sentinel) Sexual Congress: Minnesota Democratic Sen. Al Franken announced he would resign his position during a speech on the Senate floor Thursday amid multiple allegations of sexual harassment.
During his speech, Franken compared his situation to that of President Donald J. Trump, who has also faced allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct.
“There is some irony in the fact that I am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the Oval Office, and a man who has repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the Senate with the full support of his party,” Franken said, the latter a reference to Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore.
“But this decision is not about me, it’s about the people of Minnesota,” he claimed, adding that “politics is difficult.”
Franken also claimed to be a “champion of women,” despite being accused by at least eight different women of sexually abusing or harassing them.
“I am proud that during my time the Senate I have used my power to be a champion of women and that I have earned a reputation as someone who respects the women I work alongside every day. I know there’s been a very different picture of me painted over the last few weeks, but I know who I really am,” he said.
Sources told WCCO that Minnesota’s lieutenant governor, Tina Smith, a Democrat, leads the list of potential Franken replacements until Minnesotans elect a replacement in 2018. That replacement would serve until 2020, when Franken was due for re-election.
Franken is the second Democrat to announce they are retiring from office. Long-serving Rep. John Conyers of Michigan announced earlier this week he would be stepping down amid multiple sexual harassment allegations.
His son is expected to run for his seat, though reports noted that he was arrested for domestic assault, but not prosecuted.
As for Trump and Moore, both have denied the allegations against them. In Moore’s case, he has called his accusers “criminals” and has threatened legal action against them and the Washington Post, which first published accounts of four women who said Moore pursued them when he was an adult and they were teens.
In one case, one accuser said he kissed her and touched her inappropriately when she was 14 and he was 32.
House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has again called on Moore to step aside, though Trump has lent his support to Moore, saying the people of Alabama should decide whether he’s being truthful or not.
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