Sixth Woman Accuses Sen. Al Franken of Sexual Misconduct

Posted: Nov 30, 2017 12:15 PM
Sixth Woman Accuses Sen. Al Franken of Sexual Misconduct

A sixth woman has come forward to accuse Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) of sexual misconduct. A woman identified only as a former elected official from New England told Jezebel's Anna Merlan that in 2006, at an on-stage event, Franken attempted to give her a "wet, open-mouthed kiss" in front of the audience. At the time, Franken had not yet declared he was running for Senate and he was a host on the Air America radio station. The woman appeared as a guest on a live-taping of his radio show when the kiss attempt occurred. 

Jezebel has confirmed that the event with Franken occurred and is not identifying the woman at her own request. 

From Jezebel (emphasis added): 

According to the woman’s account, she was working as the chair of her town’s Selectboard in 2006 when Franken, who was then a host for the progressive radio station Air America, came to her community. The woman was invited to appear as a guest in a live taping of his show and be interviewed in a theater in front of a large audience. Jezebel has independently confirmed that she appeared on the show.

After the interview, the woman tells us, “I reached out my hand to shake his.” Then, she says, “He took it and leaned toward me with his mouth open. I turned my head away from him and he landed a wet, open-mouthed kiss awkwardly on my cheek.”

The woman says she was in disbelief. “I was stunned and incredulous. I felt demeaned. I felt put in my place.” She says, too, that although they were in an extremely public place, no one noticed: “It was onstage in front of a full theater... It was insidious. It was in plain sight and yet nobody saw it.” She adds, referring to the women who say Franken groped them during photo ops: “The other women’s accounts of him grabbing their buttocks in front of their mothers and husbands, I believe them.

This certainly sounds similar to the other accusations levied against Sen. Franken. To recap: Leeann Tweeden accused Franken of groping her while she was asleep and forcing his tongue down her throat during a rehearsal for a USO skit. Stephanie Kemplin, an Army vet, says Franken cupped her breast during a photo taken during a USO tour. Lindsay Menz said that Franken grabbed her rear end during a photo opp at the Minnesota State Fair. Two anonymous women told the Huffington Post that Franken also grasped their behinds during a photo. 

Franken has said he will not step down from the Senate.