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Response to crazycatlady (Reply #16)

Thu Jan 17, 2019, 06:12 PM

57. Respectfully, I think you're missing the point.

I was perfectly satisfied with the punishment imposed on Anthony Weiner. Yes, he was an excellent congressperson, but he also showed very poor judgment, and very little respect for women...many times. I was also satisfied with the resignation of John Conyers, Jr. who also behaved badly, and then lied about it. It was tough to lose Conyers, who had been chair of the House Judiciary Committee, but it was just. Both of these men, and several others, had credible allegations made about sexual harassment and persuasive stories about bad behavior.

Franken was/is not just a "fan favorite". He was an effective, eloquent, smart, and passionate member of the Senate. But when allegations began coming out about him they were of a vastly different quality than those about other famous men.

First of all, his first and loudest "victim" is well-known Republican talk-show host and political operative Leeann Tweeden. Her cries of "harassment" included the famous photo, and other stories that were quickly contradicted by witnesses.

The photo was alarming until put into context, which she never did. From others we learned that she was "in on" the joke, pretending to be asleep. Also, the USO tour was famously bawdy, and video quickly arose of her behaving much more suggestively than Franken had in the photo. Other accusations made against Franken were either anonymous or clearly misunderstandings (e.g. he touched a woman's bare waist when putting his arm around her for a photo). None came anywhere near the level of Weiner's transgressions. He never sent dick pix, he was not accused of unwanted advances, and he certainly never forced himself on a woman without consent.

The calls for his resignation, however, came fast, loud, and with no investigation, and from no one faster and louder than Senator Gillibrand. She and others railroaded him out of the senate without so much as an acknowledgement of his heartfelt apology or even time to allow the ethics committee to take a peek at the allegations.

So when you say, "When the perpetrator is a fan favorite on here, he does not get admonished, but instead the colleague who spoke up against him does as well as his victims," I don't know what you're talking about.

Leeann Tweeden was not afraid to speak up, in fact she clearly enjoyed the attention. Also, she was not a "victim." Franken had no "victims." Tweeden was lying, and others were either also lying or had misunderstood an innocent action. All of these women, however, received an expressive and sincere apology from Franken for any discomfort he may have caused them. Also, Franken welcomed, but never received, an investigation into the accusations.

Still, Gillibrand quickly called for his resignation (a move even Republicans weren't pushing for yet), ignoring all of the facts, lumping Franken in with attempted rapists and misogynistic men, and ridding herself of what I can only assume she she considered to be tough competition for leadership roles in the Democratic caucus in the senate.

Al Franken is one of the most honorable men to ever serve in the senate. I will hold my nose and vote for Senator Gillibrand if I have to, but I would vastly prefer to be voting for Al Franken.

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