Trump slams Franken after groping allegations: Picture ‘speaks a thousand words’

Greg Nash/Getty

President Trump slammed Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) late Thursday after a radio host and former sports broadcaster accused Franken of kissing and groping her without her consent in 2006.

Trump tweeted that the picture posted by Leeann Tweeden “speaks a thousand words,” and questioned what Franken was doing in other pictures.

“The Al Frankenstien picture is really bad, speaks a thousand words. Where do his hands go in pictures 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 while she sleeps?” Trump tweeted.


“And to think that just last week he was lecturing anyone who would listen about sexual harassment and respect for women. Lesley Stahl tape?” he added in another tweet.

Tweeden accused Franken on Thursday of groping her while she was asleep in 2006 when returning from a USO tour, releasing a picture of the incident as proof. She also said that Franken forcibly kissed her when the two were alone practicing for a USO skit.

Franken apologized earlier Thursday following the allegation, which Tweeden said she accepted.

“People make mistakes and of course he knew he made a mistake,” she said, adding that she isn’t calling for Franken to step down, unless more women come forward.

“People make mistakes. I’m not calling for him to step down. That’s not my place to say that,” she said.

Trump’s second tweet going after Franken late Thursday referenced a New York Magazine description of a “Saturday Night Live” writers’ room meeting. Franken, then a writer on the show, was quoted as suggesting a joke about raping “60 Minutes” correspondent Leslie Stahl.

“I give the pills to Leslie Stahl. Then when Leslie is passed out, I take her to the closet and rape her,” an actor parodying “60 Minutes” commentator Andy Rooney would say after finding an empty bottle of pills in his desk.

Other suggestions included, “That’s why you never see Lesley until February” or “When she passes out, I put her in various positions and take pictures of her.”

Democrats went into damage control on Thursday following the allegations against Franken, which turned the tables in the Senate where Republicans had been facing daily questions about Roy Moore, the Alabama GOP Senate nominee facing multiple allegations of sexual misconduct with teenage girls.

Trump has so far remained silent on Moore, declining to call for Moore to drop out of the race and ignoring shouted questions from reporters despite growing pressure from GOP leaders in Washington for the Senate candidate to step aside in the wake of multiple allegations of sexual misconduct involving teenage girls while he was in his 30s.

“The president believes that these allegations are very troubling and should be taken seriously,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters on Thursday about Moore.
Asked if Moore should exit the race, Sanders said, “That is a decision the people of Alabama need to make, not the president.” 

The White House released a statement last week saying that Trump “believes that if these allegations are true, Judge Moore will do the right thing and step aside.”

During the 2016 presidential campaign, at least 11 women came forward to accuse Trump of sexual harassment after the controversial “Access Hollywood” tape from 2005 was leaked. The audio of the tape caught Trump bragging about groping and kissing women without waiting for permission.

Trump has denied the allegations against him, calling them “fake” and “made-up stuff.”

The White House last month said its official position on the women who have accused Trump of sexual assault is that they are lying.

“Yeah, we’ve been clear on that from the beginning and the president has spoken on it,” Sanders said then.

Trump spent his first full day in Washington on Thursday after returning late Wednesday from a 12-day trip to Asia, his longest trip abroad yet.

– Brandon Carter contributed 

This post was updated at 11:30 p.m.

Tags Al Franken Al Franken Donald Trump Senate Sexual harassment
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