Minnesota Senator Al Franken is the latest public figure to be accused of sexual harassment. KABC News anchor Leeann Tweeden described an encounter with Franken in which he kissed and grabbed her breasts while she was sleeping.
“You knew exactly what you were doing.” Tweeden writes, “You forcibly kissed me without my consent, grabbed my breasts while I was sleeping and had someone take a photo of you doing it, knowing I would see it later, and be ashamed."
At the time in 2006, Franken was still a comedian and he was on a USO Tour to entertain troops. The Democratic Senator had planned a series of skits for a show. In a post on KABC’s website, Tweeden said she felt uncomfortable during a rehearsal.
He said to me, “We need to rehearse the kiss.” I laughed and ignored him. Then he said it again. I said something like, ‘Relax Al, this isn’t SNL…we don’t need to rehearse the kiss.’
He continued to insist, and I was beginning to get uncomfortable.
He repeated that actors really need to rehearse everything and that we must practice the kiss. I said ‘OK’ so he would stop badgering me. We did the line leading up to the kiss and then he came at me, put his hand on the back of my head, mashed his lips against mine and aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth.
I immediately pushed him away with both of my hands against his chest and told him if he ever did that to me again I wouldn’t be so nice about it the next time.
Tweeden explained that she is telling her story because there may be others.
The accusation prompted a swift call from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for a review by the Senate Ethics Committee.