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Franken addresses Senate over misconduct claims
December 08, 2017
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Washington: Democratic Senator Al Franken, under mounting pressure from within his own camp over multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, was expected to resign Thursday in an address from the Senate floor.

With support from fellow Democrats vanishing, Franken has a stark decision to make: heed the calls to leave, and allow the party to close ranks and try to gain the moral high ground amid a tidal wave of sexual harassment allegations that have lashed the political world − or stay and fight.

A friend in Franken’s Minnesota congressional delegation, House Democrat Keith Ellison, said he believes Franken “will do the right thing and resign,” and Minnesota public radio cited a party official saying the two-term senator does intend to quit.

But Franken insisted through his Twitter feed late Wednesday that he was still discussing the issue with his family, and that “any reports of a final decision are inaccurate.” He is scheduled to address his colleagues at 11:45 am (1645 GMT).

Franken − a former comedian who made his name on the popular late-night comedy show “Saturday Night Live” before turning to politics − has acknowledged misconduct with at least one accuser.

The 66-year-old Minnesota lawmaker apologized last month and vowed to work to regain the trust of his colleagues and voters.

But with six other women now reportedly coming forward to accuse Franken of touching them inappropriately, and the issue of sexual harassment reverberating throughout Washington, a chorus of Democratic senators said it was time for him to go.

It was female lawmakers who led the revolt against their once-popular colleague.

In a well-coordinated social media attack, 12 of the Senate’s 16 Democratic women took to Twitter or Facebook to demand Franken’s resignation.

Agence France-Presse

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