Concerning optics, the Democratic dithering on what to do, or even say, about what should happen to Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) over their sexual misconduct allegations has been a sore spot for the Left as of late. They were taking the high road, looking high and mighty over the GOP who was struggling to deal with their southern problem: Roy Moore and his sexual misconduct allegations that include sexually molesting and assaulting teenage girls. Moore is the GOP candidate in Alabama’s Senate race next month. Yet, Franken was accused of sexual harassment prior to the Thanksgiving holiday. Then, Rep. Conyers’ 2015 sexual harassment claim that was settled to the tune of $27,000 in taxpayer money. Both men have said they’re not resigning. Melanie Sloan, a Washington lawyer, has accused Conyers of being verbally abusive, though did not accuse him of sexual harassment. The second woman, Deanna Maher, is a different story (via Detroit Free Press):
Deanna Maher, who worked for him from 1997 to 2005, told The Detroit News that the Detroit Democrat made unwanted advances toward her three times.
The first instance of harassment happened, Maher said, shortly after the congressman hired her in September 1997 during an event with the Congressional Black Caucus.
“I didn’t have a room, and he had me put in his hotel suite,” said Maher, 77, adding that she rejected his offer to share his room at the Grand Hyatt in Washington and have sex.
The other incidents with the now 88-year-old Conyers involved unwanted touching in a car in 1998 and another unwanted touching of her legs under her dress in 1999, she said.
Conyers’ attorney Arnold Reed questioned why Maher would continue to work for Conyers for so many years after the alleged incidents. He also said Maher’s allegations are uncorroborated and that his client denies wrongdoing.
“At the end of the day, he’s confident that he will be exonerated because he maintains that he has not done anything wrong,” Reed said.
Maher said her need for employment explains why she stayed on the job.
Now, CNN reports that some members of the Black Congressional Caucus are trying to talk Conyers into resigning:
Several Congressional Black Caucus members are in talks to get veteran Rep. John Conyers to resign amid allegations of sexual misconduct, several Democratic sources told CNN on Tuesday.
Those members are trying to ease his exit without trampling on his legacy during his 50-plus years in the House. Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, is the longest currently serving member of the House of Representatives.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is not leading the effort but is tacitly supporting it, according to Democratic sources.
Yeah, they’re going to twist themselves into pretzels on this one.