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Al Franken, Blake Farenthold, John Conyers among politicians accused of sexual misconduct in 2017

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Al Franken, Blake Farenthold, John Conyers among politicians accused of sexual misconduct in 2017

Al Franken, Blake Farenthold, John Conyers among politicians accused of sexual misconduct in 2017


Multiple politicians have been accused of sexual misconduct in 2017, leading to House Ethics Committee investigations and resignations.

Here are the Republicans and Democrats who have been accused of sexual misconduct this year.

John Conyers

U.S. Representative John Conyers (D-MI) participates in a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. July 12, 2016.  Picture taken  July 12, 2016.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Nearly a half-dozen women have come forward with allegations against Conyers.

 (Reuters)

Nearly a half-dozen women who previously worked for Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., recently accused him  of sexual misconduct. Many of the women claim that Conyers harassed and touched them inappropriately.

Conyers has denied the allegations. Still, many of his colleagues encouraged him to step down.

The representative, who was first elected in 1964, resigned on Dec. 5. At the time of his resignation, Conyers endorsed his 27-year-old son, John Conyers III, to replace him. It’s not yet clear if he plans on running for his father’s old seat.

Blake Farenthold

FILE - In this Jan. 3, 2017, file photo, House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis. administers the House oath of office to Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, during a mock swearing in ceremony on Capitol Hill in Washington. The House Ethics Committee said Dec. 7 it is expanding its investigation into sexual harassment allegations against Farenthold. The committee said it will investigate whether Farenthold sexually harassed a former member of his staff and retaliated against her for complaining. The committee also said the panel would review allegations that Farenthold made inappropriate statements to other members of his official staff. ( AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

Rep. Blake Farenthold (right) has also been accused of sexual harassment.

 (The Associated Press)

Republicans said Texas GOP Rep. Blake Farenthold won’t seek re-election amid sexual harassment allegations.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., told reporters Thursday that Farenthold was “making the right decision to retire,” citing the “unacceptable behavior that has been alleged.”

The news comes after the House Ethics Committee announced in early December that it was expanding an investigation into sexual harassment allegations against Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas.

The committee said it will investigate whether Farenthold sexually harassed a former member of his staff and retaliated against her for complaining. The committee also said the panel would review allegations that Farenthold made inappropriate statements to other members of his official staff.

Lauren Greene, a former communications director in the congressman’s office, alleged in a 2014 federal lawsuit that she was sexually harassed and fired soon after complaining of a hostile work environment. Farenthold said when the case was settled in 2015 that he didn’t engage in any wrongdoing.

Following the announcement, Farenthold said he was “relieved” that the Ethics Committee would look further into the case.

“Once all the facts are released, I’m confident this matter will once and for all be settled and resolved,” Farenthold said. “I’m also pleased the Committee on Ethics recognizes, as per their statement, that I have cooperated fully with the committee’s investigation and acknowledged a decision has been delayed because of difficulty obtaining live testimony from other witnesses.”

“This investigation increases the transparency the public deserves and what I’ve wanted since the beginning.”

Al Franken

Alm Franken FBN AP

Al Franken recently resigned.

 (The Associated Press)

At least eight different women have accused Democratic Minnesota Sen. Al Franken of sexual misconduct.

Many of the women allege that Franken forcibly kissed them, groped them and made unwanted sexual advances.

Franken, a comedian turned politician who has been in office since 2009, was first accused by Los Angeles radio anchor Leeann Tweeden who claimed  Franken forcibly kissed her during a 2006 USO tour.

After more women came forward, Franken faced a Senate Ethics Committee investigation, and many Democrats encouraged Franken to step down.

Franken, who has apologized for his actions, announced Thursday that he will resign from the Senate “in the coming weeks.”

Trent Franks

FILE - In this March 24, 2017, file photo, Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz. speaks with a reporter on Capitol Hill in Washington. Franks says he is resigning Jan. 31 amid a House Ethics Committee investigation of possible sexual harassment. Franks says in a statement that he never physically intimidated, coerced or attempted to have any sexual contact with any member of his congressional staff. Instead, he says, the dispute resulted from a discussion of surrogacy. Franks and his wife have 3-year-old twins who were conceived through surrogacy. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)

Rep. Trent Franks recently resigned.

 (The Associated Press)

Arizona Rep. Trent Franks stepped down on Friday amid news reports that he allegedly repeatedly pressed a former aide to carry his child. Franks reportedly offered her $5 million to act as a surrogate.

Franks first announced his resignation on Thursday, saying that he would formally step down in January. But after his wife was admitted to the hospital earlier this week, his plans changed and his resignation was effective as of Dec. 8, 2017.

The representative was reportedly encouraged to step down by Speaker Paul Ryan, who learned of an House Ethics Committee investigation into his behavior.

Franks admitted that discussing surrogacy with two of his female staffers “made certain individuals uncomfortable.”

Ruben Kihuen

FILE - This Nov. 14, 2016 file photo Rep.-elect Ruben Kihuen, D-Nev.,right, speaks with reporters as Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., left, listens on Capitol Hill in Washington. The chairman of the House Democrats' campaign committee called on Kihuen to step down after a report Friday, Dec. 1, 2017, that he allegedly sexually harassed his campaign's finance director. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen,File)

Rep. Ruben Kihuen has been accused of sexual harassment by a former aid.

 (The Associated Press)

A former aide, identified only as Samantha, recently accused Nevada Rep. Ruben Kihuen, a first-term lawmaker, of repeatedly making sexual advances toward her during the 2016 congressional campaign.

On two occasions, she said, he touched her thighs without consent. She also claims that the representative propositioned her for dates and sex on multiple occasions despite her repeated rejections.

Buzzfeed first reported the former aide’s allegations.

“I sincerely apologize for anything that I may have said or done that made her feel uncomfortable. I take this matter seriously as it is not indicative of who I am,” Kihuen said in a statement following the report. “But I want to make it clear that I don’t recall any of the circumstances she described.”

On Saturday, a top House Democrat said Kihuen should resign amid the allegations. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said she found Samantha’s allegations to be convincing, the Associated Press reported.

Roy Moore

FILE - In this Monday, Sept. 25, 2017, file photo, former Alabama Chief Justice and U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore speaks at a rally, in Fairhope, Ala. In the face of sexual misconduct allegations, Moore's U.S. Senate campaign has been punctuated by tense moments and long stretches without public appearances. Moore faces Democrat Doug Jones for Alabama's U.S. Senate seat in the Dec. 12 election. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

President Trump has stood by Roy Moore despite the allegations.

 (The Associated Press)

Roy Moore, a former Alabama judge and the 2017 Republican candidate in the United States Senate Special election in Alabama, was accused of having inappropriate sexual relations with teenage girls while he was in his 30s, the Washington Post reported in a bombshell report about a month before the special election.

Since the report, additional women have come forward with sexual misconduct allegations.

Moore has vehemently  denied the accusations, once calling them “the definition of fake news.”

Since the allegations came to light, however, many Republicans have called on him to step aside from the campaign. But others, like President Trump and Steve Bannon,  have continued to stand by Moore despite the accusations.

Moore lost the election to Doug Jones on Dec. 12.  

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Source: Al Franken, Blake Farenthold, John Conyers among politicians accused of sexual misconduct in 2017

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