A sixth woman has come out now and accused Franken of trying to give her a ‘wet open-mouthed kiss’ just before he ran for Congress in 2006.
JEZEBEL – A former elected official in New England who has requested anonymity tells Jezebel that Al Franken attempted to give her a “wet, open-mouthed kiss” onstage at an event in 2006, shortly before he ran for Senate. The woman says the encounter left her “stunned and incredulous.”
The New England woman told Jezebel she came forward in an effort to encourage Franken to take responsibility for his actions, but didn’t wish to be named.
“I want my name associated with my own accomplishments,” she told us, “and not publicly linked to a man’s bad behavior.”
According to the woman’s account, she was working as the chair of her town’s Selectboard in 2006 when Franken, who was then a host for the progressive radio station Air America, came to her community. The woman was invited to appear as a guest in a live taping of his show and be interviewed in a theater in front of a large audience. Jezebel has independently confirmed that she appeared on the show.
After the interview, the woman tells us, “I reached out my hand to shake his.” Then, she says, “He took it and leaned toward me with his mouth open. I turned my head away from him and he landed a wet, open-mouthed kiss awkwardly on my cheek.”
The woman says she was in disbelief. “I was stunned and incredulous. I felt demeaned. I felt put in my place.” She says, too, that although they were in an extremely public place, no one noticed: “It was onstage in front of a full theater… It was insidious. It was in plain sight and yet nobody saw it.” She adds, referring to the women who say Franken groped them during photo ops: “The other women’s accounts of him grabbing their buttocks in front of their mothers and husbands, I believe them.”
The incident happened in the spring of 2006; Franken announced he was running for Senate in February 2007.
The woman’s sister confirmed to Jezebel that she told her about the incident right away. The official’s sister, who described her own politics as liberal, said “Honestly, it tainted my view of him.”
I think we have a solid pattern of behavior established here and I expect more women to come forward with similar type stories. And of course Franken will remember them all ‘differently’.
Time to resign.