Illinois’ two Democratic U.S. senators, Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth, on Thursday issued statements on the allegations made by a female radio host against Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, with both asking for a review by the Senate Ethics Committee.
But Durbin and Duckworth stopped short of calling for Franken to resign.
“These types of actions are simply unacceptable and should be reviewed by the Ethics Committee,” Duckworth said. “Women across America should be able to feel safe in their workplace, and they deserve our support when coming forward with allegations of misconduct.”
Durbin called the behavior wrong.
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“There is never an excuse for this behavior — ever,” Durbin said. “What Sen. Franken did was wrong, and it should be referred to the Ethics Committee for review.”
Leeann Tweeden, a Los Angeles radio anchor, posted the allegations that Franken forcibly kissed her during a 2006 USO tour and posed for a photo with his hands at her breasts as she slept. Tweeden posted the photo online on KABC website.
Franken apologized Thursday.
“To everyone else who was part of that tour, to everyone who has worked for me, to everyone I represent, and to everyone who counts on me to be an ally and supporter and champion of women,” Franken said in a statement. “I respect women. I don’t respect men who don’t. And the fact that my own actions have given people a good reason to doubt that makes me feel ashamed.”