In a post on the website of KABC, where she is a morning anchor, Tweeden writes that she was in a skit with Franken in which his character tried to kiss her. She writes that she expected a stage kiss in which she turned her head, but that backstage he insisted they needed to practice the kiss. She demurred, but he insisted, she said.
He repeated that actors really need to rehearse everything and that we must practice the kiss. I said ‘OK’ so he would stop badgering me. We did the line leading up to the kiss and then he came at me, put his hand on the back of my head, mashed his lips against mine, and aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth.
She said she pushed him away and warned him never to do it again.
“I walked away. All I could think about was getting to a bathroom as fast as possible to rinse the taste of him out of my mouth,” Tweeden wrote. “I felt disgusted and violated.”T
“I’m still angry at what Al Franken did to me,” Tweeden wrote. “Every time I hear his voice or see his face, I am angry. I am angry that I did his stupid skit for the rest of that tour.”
Tweeden’s story is the latest in a long string of allegations of sexual abuse, harassment, and assault against powerful men in a range of industries. They come as Republicans seek to force Roy Moore, their party’s U.S. Senate nominee in Alabama, out of his race. Female members of Congress and staffers have described Capitol Hill as rife with sexual harassment, as my colleague Michelle Cottle reported.
The Franken allegations are different for a couple reasons: First, they come against a sitting senator. Second, they include not just Tweeden’s account but also a deeply disturbing photo. Third, they demonstrate yet again that sexual-harassment claims are a bipartisan issue.
“As with all credible allegations of sexual harassment or assault, I believe the Ethics Committee should review the matter. I hope the Democratic leader will join me on this,” he said. “Regardless of party, harassment and assault are completely unacceptable, in the workplace or anywhere else.”
The seriousness of these charges should warrant Senator Franken stepping down immediately. How soon can we expect Mitch McConnell to demand his resignation. How soon before Hannity gives him 24 hours to explain himself. How many more women are there that Franken has touched and kissed without their consent?