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Sen. Al Franken Accused of Kissing, Groping Woman Without Consent

17 November 2017, 01:25 | Jermaine Blake

Who Is Leeann Tweeden? The Radio Host Says Sen. Al Franken Sexually Assaulted Her In 2006 Tim Boyles Getty Images Entertainment Getty Images

Who Is Leeann Tweeden? The Radio Host Says Sen. Al Franken Sexually Assaulted Her In 2006 Tim Boyles  Getty Images Entertainment  Getty Images

Senator Al Franken has issued an extended apology following allegations by a Los Angeles radio talk show news anchor that he kissed and groped her during a USO tour to the middle east.

Leeann Tweeden, a news anchor on KABC's "McIntyre in the Morning", said in a post on the station's website Thursday that Franken had written a skit for the USO tour in which they kissed, and he demanded that they rehearse the scene.

On the tour's flight back to the United States, Franken groped Tweeden's breasts while she was asleep - an act Tweeden discovered afterwards when she saw a photograph.

Moore, facing multiple accusations that he pursued relationships or sexually assaulted teenage girls, mocked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for calling for an ethics panel investigation into Franken. "Comedy is no excuse for inappropriate conduct, and I believe there should be an ethics investigation", McCaskill wrote on Twitter.

Franken becomes the latest figure swept up in sexual harassment allegations that have mushroomed since Hollywood figure Harvey Weinstein was hit with multiple allegations.

Franken has said that he has no idea what was going through his head when the photo was taken and that it makes him feel "disgusted".

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"I certainly don't remember the rehearsal for the skit in the same way, but I send my sincerest apologies to Leeann", Franken said. He also asked for an ethics investigation, a request that is already moving forward. I laughed and ignored him.

"She described how a powerful man in the office where she worked 'held her face, kissed her and stuck his tongue in her mouth", Tweeden wrote. "Why do you think there are people, there are still a lot of people who haven't told their stories", she said.

Tweeden is the daughter of a service member, and she says that she's passionate about the troops and their mission overseas. "What Sen. Franken did is wrong and regardless of political party, sexual harassmen and sexual abuse are unacceptable".

"I said "OK" so he would stop badgering me. If there are other people who come out and say he's done this, I don't know".

In the spiraling national conversation about sexual harassment, women on Capitol Hill also have recounted groping and unwanted advances from men and said that Congress lacks sufficient protections for them.

Tweeden credited Congresswoman Jackie Speier's (D-California) account of being assaulted when she was a young Congressional aide as inspiration to come forward. "I have let them down and am committed to making it up to them". "I said something like, 'Relax, Al, this isn't [Saturday Night Live].we don't need to rehearse the kiss'".

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