The expendable Mr. Franken

Democratic support for the tenure of Minnesota Senator Al Franken in office died on the vine today. First Senator Kirsten Gillibrand stepped forward to call for Franken’s resignation. Her call was followed by other Democratic women senators with the exception of his colleague Amy Klobuchar, whose help was unnecessary to the task at hand. However, she had been among the first Senators to call for Franken’s case to be remitted to the Senate Ethics Committee. It wouldn’t be Minnesota nice for her to pile on now. Some two dozen Democratic Senators have called for Franken’s resignation. Franken’s response is to be announced tomorrow.

The dam broke this morning with Heather Caygle’s Politico report of the latest accusation against Franken, this one courtesy of a former congressional aide who had the misfortune of crossing paths with him in 2006. When Franken sought to perfect his involuntary French kiss technique, she ducked. She quoted Franken telling her: “It’s my right as an entertainer.”

Politico has protected the identity of the accuser. I wonder if they found the quote self-authenticating. Who could make that up? On the other hand, for Franken that is an uncharacteristically funny comment.

Franken categorically denies the story, but Franken’s colleagues have had enough. He didn’t have much in the way of personal capital with them to begin with; he is a jerk. They have come to realize that he is expendable. At this points his costs vastly outweigh his benefits. Indeed, he has become all cost and no benefit.

Governor Mark Dayton will appoint a reliable Democratic replacement without Franken’s baggage. Democrats have prepared the battle space to contest Roy Moore and President Trump. As far as the Democrats are concerned, it’s time for Franken to go.

UPDATE: Yet another victim of Franken has stepped forward, this one speaking at the Atlantic under her own name — Tina Dupuy: “I believe Franken’s accusers because he groped me, too.”

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