Sen. Al Franken accused of inappropriate behavior by a second woman


Sen. Al Franken at a Democratic committee hearing in the Capitol building, July 19, 2017. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

(JTA) — A second woman has come forward to accuse Sen. Al Franken of inappropriate behavior.

Lindsay Menz, 33, said that Franken, a Minnesota Democrat, grabbed her buttocks while they took a photo together at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010, CNN reported Monday.

Menz, now living in Texas, contacted the cable news network on Thursday, hours after the accusation by Leeann Tweeden, a Los Angeles-based news anchor and former model, went public. Menz called it an “uncomfortable” interaction that left her feeling “gross,” according to CNN.

She told CNN that as her husband snapped a photo of her and Franken, he pulled her in “awkward close” and “put his hand full-fledged on my rear.”

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In a statement Monday to CNN, Franken said he did not remember taking the photo with Menz and that he felt “badly that Ms. Menz came away from our interaction feeling disrespected.”

The photo shows the two of them standing close together and both smiling.

Menz posted the photo on Facebook at the time and indicated in response to a message from her sister that “Al Franken TOTALLY molested me! Creeper!” according to CNN, which saw the post limited to Facebook friends of Menz.

Tweeden wrote in an article that Franken groped her during a 2006 tour to entertain U.S. troops in the Middle East. Franken was a comedian and a writer at the time; he has served as a senator since 2009.

Franken has since apologized to Tweeden; she has not called for his resignation.

Facing a potential investigation by the Senate Ethics Committee, Franken has said he would cooperate.

The accusation is the latest in a flood that has roiled the worlds of entertainment, politics and the media since last month, when dozens of women alleged that Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein harassed and in some cases assaulted them.

The allegations against Franken also come as Republicans have called for Roy Moore, the GOP candidate in a special Senate election, to drop out of the race in the wake of multiple allegations that while in his 30s, he pursued and in some cases assaulted teenage girls. Moore adamantly denies the allegations and has said he intends to see through next month’s election.

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