Sen. Al Franken’s (D-MN) spokesperson says that the lawmaker will not resign following a woman’s sexual misconduct allegations against him.
“No,” they said in a Saturday text to The Star-Tribune when asked whether Franken would resign after the accusations.
“He is spending time with his family in Washington, D.C., and will be through the Thanksgiving holiday, and he’s doing a lot of reflecting,” the spokesperson added.
Franken, 66, was absent from last Thursday’s Senate votes amid national backlash over the recent allegations about his past behavior.
The Minnesota lawmaker – who has been married to Franni Bryson, his wife, since 1975 – also cancelled several public appearances after the claims emerged.
Los Angeles broadcast Leeann Tweeden last week alleged that Franken groped and kissed her without consent during a 2006 United Services Organization (USO) tour through Afghanistan.
Franken, who was a comedian at the time, was the tour’s headliner and wrote a kiss with Tweeden into a sketch they were slated to perform together.
Tweeden last week accused Franken of forcibly kissing her without her permission in what he called a “rehearsal” for the skit.
The broadcaster also shared a photograph of Franken apparently grabbing her chest while she slept during the event.
Franken has since issued two statements responding to Tweeden, with the first saying he did not recall the USO sketch they performed together in the same way.
The senator’s second statement apologized more profusely for the incident, while also calling for a Senate Ethics Committee investigation into his own behavior.
Tweeden last week accepted Franken’s apology, adding that she is not demanding that he resign his Senate seat.
The radio personality’s account nonetheless provoked an outpouring of criticism against Franken from President Trump, Republicans and even some of his fellow Democrats.
The Star-Tribune on Sunday reported that the Senate has not ousted one of its own members in more than 150 years, and the upper chamber has also not censured one of them since 1990.