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Top Minnesota newspaper: Franken’s apology ‘fails the full candor test’

Top Minnesota newspaper: Franken’s apology ‘fails the full candor test’
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A top Minnesota newspaper in an editorial published late Monday said Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenMinnesota GOP Senate candidate compared Michelle Obama to a chimp in Facebook post Former campaign aide to New Jersey governor says she was sexually assaulted by his ex-staffer Prosecutor drops some charges against Harvey Weinstein MORE’s (D-Minn.) apology following sexual misconduct accusations fell "lamentably short,” and questioned the lawmaker’s claim that he does not remember the alleged incidents. 

“Under such circumstances, Franken's apology is less a statement of accountability and more akin to 'I'm sorry for what you think I did,’ ” the editorial board of the Star-Tribune wrote.

“Franken may just be trying to ride out the storm, as is the case too often these days.”

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Multiple women have accused Franken of inappropriate touching while taking photos after radio host Leeann Tweeden said he forcibly kissed her during a USO sketch rehearsal in 2006. Tweeden also posted a photo showing Franken grabbing at her breasts as she slept. 

Franken on Monday publicly spoke to reporters in Washington, D.C., and apologized over the Thanksgiving holiday.

The newspaper in its editorial questioned his claim that he does not recall the alleged groping incidents.

“Is he suggesting these women could not distinguish between a friendly embrace and groping?” it asks.

“Or that at his age he somehow groped unintentionally? Can one credibly apologize for acts without acknowledging they occurred?”

The editorial board said Franken, despite his vows to do so, may not be able to gain back the trust of his constituents.

“Franken is right — he has much to do to regain Minnesotans' trust. It may not be possible,” the editorial board wrote. 

“As he continues his reflection, we urge the senator to consider what is best for Minnesota and to weigh that more heavily than what might be best for his political career.”