Minnesota Sen. Al Franken resigning amid sexual misconduct alleg - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Minnesota Sen. Al Franken resigning amid sexual misconduct allegations

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WASHINGTON (WDRB) -- Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, once a rising star in Democratic Party, is resigning amid sexual misconduct allegations.

Standing in the Senate chambers he told colleagues that "Serving in the Senate has been the greatest honor of my life." He said he will be resigning in coming weeks. 

The Minnesota Democrat said he will remain an active in causes he believes in. "Let me be clear: I may be resigning my seat but I am not giving up my voice. I will continue to stand up for the things I believe in as a citizen and an activist."

Franken had been under intense pressure to step down as allegations of sexual misconduct have mounted, with at least eight women accusing him of acting inappropriately.

"This decision is not about me. It's about the people of Minnesota. It has become clear that I can't both pursue the ethics committee process and remain an effective senator for them," he said. 

During his statement, Franken couldn't resist taking a swipe at President Donald Trump. "I of all people am aware that there is some irony in the fact that I am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the Oval Office." 

"This has been a tough few weeks for me, but I am a very, very lucky man," said Franken. "I have a beautiful, healthy family that I love and that love me very much. I'm going to be just fine."

The two-term lawmaker has repeatedly apologized as several women stepped forward to accuse him of sexually inappropriate behavior, from groping to forcibly trying to kiss them.

But a fresh allegation on Wednesday unleashed a torrent of Democratic demands that Franken step aside. Female senators led the chorus.

Franken is an actor who appeared on "Saturday Night Live" and an author who narrowly won his Senate seat in 2008 after a prolonged vote count. He has been a fierce opponent of the Trump administration.

His political fall has been swift by congressional standards. The first allegation surfaced on Nov. 16.

This story will be updated. 

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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