McCaskill calls for ethics investigation of Franken
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) on Thursday joined calls for an ethics investigation into the accusations that Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) groped and kissed a woman without her consent, calling such behavior “completely unacceptable.”
“I’m shocked and concerned. The behavior described is completely unacceptable. Comedy is no excuse for inappropriate conduct, and I believe there should be an ethics investigation,” McCaskill tweeted.
Re Al Franken: I’m shocked and concerned. The behavior described is completely unacceptable. Comedy is no excuse for inappropriate conduct, and I believe there should be an ethics investigation.
— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) November 16, 2017
Radio anchor and sports broadcaster Leeann Tweeden on Thursday accused Franken of kissing her and groping her without her consent in 2006. The incident happened when the two were part of a USO tour to “entertain our troops,” Tweeden wrote.
Franken, who headlined the trip as a comedian, wrote a skit in which he kissed Tweeden, she charged. He insisted they rehearse the scene, she said, at which point he kissed her despite her objections.
Tweeden also published a photo of Franken appearing to grab her chest while she was sleeping on a flight back to the U.S.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called for the Senate Ethics Committee to review the allegations.
Franken released a statement shortly after Tweeden’s article was published, saying he would “gladly cooperate” in an ethics investigation.
“I certainly don’t remember the rehearsal for the skit in the same way, but I send my sincerest apologies to Leeann. As to the photo, it was clearly intended to be funny but wasn’t. I shouldn’t have done it,” he said in a separate statement.
Another fellow senator, Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), said she believes Franken’s accuser and said she expects to hear more from Franken.