Al Franken resigns from Senate over sexual harassment allegations
U.S. Democratic Senator Al Franken announced his resignation on Thursday, a day after a majority of his Democratic Senate colleagues called for him to step down following a string of sexual misconduct allegations against him.
Speaking from the Senate floor Thursday, Franken addressed the sexual harassment allegations and said he wanted to be respectful because “all women deserve to be heard.”
“I know in my heart that nothing I’ve done as a senator – nothing – has brought dishonor on this institution,” Franken said. “Nevertheless, today I am announcing that in the coming weeks, I will be resigning as a member of the United States Senate.”
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“Let me clear, I may be resigning my seat, but I will not be giving up my voice,” he added.
While speaking, Franken brought up U.S. President Donald Trump, the Access Hollywood tape and his support for GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore.
“I am leaving while a man bragged on tape about his history of the sexual assault sits in the Oval Office and a man who repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the Senate with the full support of his party. But this decision is not about me. It’s about the people of Minnesota,” Franken said.
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The two-term lawmaker has repeatedly apologized as several women stepped forward to accuse him of sexually inappropriate behavior, from groping to forcibly trying to kiss them.
But a fresh allegation on Wednesday unleashed a torrent of Democratic demanded that Franken step aside.
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Franken is an actor who appeared on “Saturday Night Live” and an author who narrowly won his Senate seat in 2008 after a prolonged vote count. He has been a fierce opponent of the Trump administration.
His political fall has been swift by congressional standards. The first allegation surfaced on Nov. 16.
With files from the Associated Press
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