A ninth woman has come forward to allege she was groped by former Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenAl Franken on another Senate run: 'I'm keeping my options open' Andrew Cuomo and the death of shame Could Andrew Cuomo — despite scandals — be re-elected because of Trump? MORE (D-Minn.), according to The Cut.
The woman, who asked for her name not to be used, is now a senior staffer at an unnamed progressive organization, and said the incident occurred in 2006 shortly after she graduated from college and was working for Sen. Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayFaith leaders call on Congress to lead the response to a global pandemic Conservation group says it will only endorse Democrats who support .5T spending plan Support the budget resolution to ensure a critical investment in child care MORE (D-Wash.).
While being photographed with Franken, who was then still exploring his eventual 2008 run for Senate, the woman said he placed his hand on her buttocks.
“He’s telling the photographer, ‘Take another one. I think I blinked. Take another one.’ And I’m just frozen. It’s so violating. And then he gives me a little squeeze on my buttock, and I am bright red. I don’t say anything at the time, but I felt deeply, deeply uncomfortable,” the woman told the publication.
The woman told The Cut she did not tell anyone about the incident at the time out of embarrassment, but three people told the publication the woman talked to them about the alleged incident when the first allegations against Franken broke in late 2017, leading to his eventual resignation.
Franken told the publication, “Two years ago, I would have sworn that I’d never done anything to make anyone feel uncomfortable, but it’s clear that I must have been doing something. As I’ve said before, I feel terrible that anyone came away from an interaction with me feeling bad.”
The Hill has also reached out to Franken for comment.
The woman said that she considered coming forward along with Franken’s eight other accusers in 2018, but decided against it after remembering an incident where she reported unwelcome attention from a boss and eventually left her job feeling isolated.
She added that she has ambitions to work for a future Democratic White House and was concerned going public could hurt her career prospects.
“[K]nowing the vetting process, I know that anything can be used as a flag to say, ‘Not this person.’ The idea that I would not get a job and would always wonder: Was it the article where I was the one who was raising my hand against a powerful man?” she said.