Metro Council Democratic Caucus calls on Johnson to resign seat - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Metro Council Democratic Caucus calls on Johnson to resign seat

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Louisville Metro Councilman Dan Johnson Louisville Metro Councilman Dan Johnson

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Democrats on Louisville’s Metro Council have expelled fellow Councilman Dan Johnson from their caucus and requested that he resign by Aug. 1 or risk being removed.

“Councilman Johnson is no longer a member of our caucus, and we have recommended by more than a two-thirds vote of the entire caucus membership that Councilman Johnson resign from Metro Council,” said Holland, following a more than two-hour, closed-door meeting.

Hollander said the caucus is convinced that Johnson grabbed the backside of Metro Council member Jessica Green during a photo shoot earlier this year.

If Johnson does not resign by the deadline, Hollander said Democrats, who are a majority on the Metro Council, will launch the process of removing Johnson from his seat.

“It's a long process, and that's one of the reasons we're asking councilman Johnson to resign: to avoid that process,” Hollander said.

Hollander said the caucus heard testimony from Green before the vote. He said Johnson was invited to tell his side of the story, but declined.

During a Wednesday interview with Terry Meiners on WHAS radio, Johnson again denied intentionally touching Green. He also blamed ill-fitting pants for exposing his backside to an aide to Republican council member Angela Leet.

“I've been in public for a long time, and sometimes my pants have come down," Johnson said. "But it certainly hasn't  been like that."

In a statement, Johnson gave no indication he would quit, calling the caucus vote "... a desperate and malicious act by a few Democratic caucus members to install their hand-picked crony as a Council Member.”

Democrats said they do not accept Johnson's apologies, or believe his denials.

“This is an embarrassment to the Metro Council as a whole, that we're undergoing these things," Council President David Yates. said. "It's a black eye on the entire community."

Stephen Haag, director of the council’s minority Republican caucus said, “The members of the Minority Caucus believe that Councilman Johnson’s actions as well as his decision to use legal counsel to silence his accusers are not acceptable actions for an elected official. Many members of this Caucus have called on Councilman Johnson to resign rather than having him serve on the council for another 18 months or more.” 

To begin the process of removing Johnson, five council members or the mayor must file written charges against him with the council president. That would lead to a trial before the Metro Council.

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