WATCH: Al Franken Announces Resignation Full Video Playback

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., attends a news conference in the Capitol on the Child Care for Working Families Act, which focuses on affordable early learning and care on September 14, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senator Al Franken announced his resignation from the Senate after a seventh woman accused him of improper sexual conduct. Watch his full speech above. In the speech, Franken commented on how he was hopeful about the recent surge in the reporting of sexual harassment allegations would bring change. He said that some of the allegations are not true, while others he remembers "very differently."


Franken added, "I know in my heart that nothing I have done as a Senator that would bring dishonor on this committee." He then announced his resignation. He also commented on Trump's history of sexual assault and the upcoming election in Alabama and Roy Moore, who has allegedly preyed on teenage girls. Franken said he was resigning his seat, but was not giving up his voice as a citizen and an activist. His official resignation will happen in the next few weeks.

Earlier, media outlet MPR tweeted a report that Franken had decided to resign––even though the senator had not yet made an official announcement. Prior to his announcement, Jake Tapper tweeted that Franken said he believed he could no longer serve effectively.

Franken's latest accuser spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity.

“He was between me and the door, and he was coming at me to kiss me. It was very quick, and I think my brain had to work really hard to be like ‘Wait, what is happening?’ But I knew whatever was happening was not right, and I ducked,” the woman, a former staffer, told Politico. “I was really startled by it, and I just sort of booked it towards the door, and he said, ‘It’s my right as an entertainer.’”

Franken came under fire after media personality Leeann Tweeden alleged Franken forcibly kissed her without her consent as part of a rehearsal for a skit during a USO tour.

"He continued to insist, and I was beginning to get uncomfortable,” Tweeden wrote. “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.”

Things grew steadily worse after a photograph surfaced in which Franken appeared to grope Tweeden's breasts while she was seated and sleeping. Tweeden said the photo was taken without her knowledge on the plane ride back to Los Angeles.

“I couldn’t believe it. He groped me, without my consent, while I was asleep,” she said. “I felt violated all over again. Embarrassed. Belittled. Humiliated. How dare anyone grab my breasts like this and think it’s funny?”

“He was between me and the door, and he was coming at me to kiss me. It was very quick, and I think my brain had to work really hard to be like ‘Wait, what is happening?’ But I knew whatever was happening was not right, and I ducked,” the woman, a former staffer, told Politico. “I was really startled by it, and I just sort of booked it towards the door, and he said, ‘It’s my right as an entertainer.’”

The top name to replace Franken is Tina Smith, the lieutenant governor to Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton. Smith is a former marketing professional who served as chief of staff to former Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak. She worked with the mayor's office at the time when the Interstate 35W bridge collapsed in Minneapolis and played a major role during the rebuilding process.

Smith has worked with Governor Dayton since 2010 when she joined his campaign team. She served as his chief of staff before she became his running mate.

According to Politico:

Part of the reason Smith could be heading to the Senate, the sources said, is that she has indicated no interest in running for Congress in the past and would not run for the remainder of Franken’s term, which expires in 2020, in a 2018 special election.

This leaves the Democratic primary next year wide-open now that Franken has stepped down.

JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

At the crucial beginning stages of the pandemic that's since upended daily life in the United States, President Donald Trump assured that the virus would disappear "like a miracle," and that 15 cases in the country would shrink to zero in a matter of days. Republican lawmakers, eager to please the President, echoed these talking points.

Trump reportedly ignored warnings from officials that a massive outbreak in the United States was inevitable, and that he and the administration needed to prepare a response—allocating medical equipment and safety measures to meet the virus upon arrival.

That didn't happen.

Keep reading... Show less
Scott Olson/Getty Images // Scott Olson/Getty Images

Weeks after a bungled testing kit rollout from President Donald Trump's CDC, governors in rural areas are still having trouble obtaining an adequate number of testing kits to properly determine just how quickly the virus is spreading throughout their communities.

According to a leaked phone call between Trump, National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases director Dr. Anthony Fauci, and a group of rural state governors, the President once again expressed skepticism that governors were on the brink of a life-threatening shortage.

Keep reading... Show less
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Despite the strong possibility of spreading the virus that's caused a national health crisis in the United States, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. came under fire last week for ordering university faculty back to campus and for giving students the option to return as well.

Falwell is a staunch supporter of President Donald Trump, and has previously echoed Trump's initial dismissals of the threat posed by the highly contagious virus. He even previously claimed that the virus was a biological weapon engineered by enemies of the United States.

Keep reading... Show less
C-SPAN

If you think Fox News is the most loyal network to President Donald Trump, you likely haven't heard of One America News Network, or OAN.

The unabashedly pro-Trump network—largely considered a far-Right fringe outlet—has enjoyed expanded viewership over recent years thanks to glowing reviews from the President.

It's even been added to the prestigious White House press pool.

People were reminded of the network's bizarre Trump-era ascension during Monday's White House press briefing regarding the pandemic that—at the time of this writing—has resulted in over 3,000 deaths across the United States.

OAN's White House correspondent Chanel Rion compared the growing number of deaths from the pandemic to abortion procedures, asking Trump if abortions should be suspended all together.

The question flummoxed Trump himself.

Watch below.

Rion said:

"2,405 Americans have died from [the virus] in the last 60 days. Meanwhile, you have 2,369 children who are killed by their mothers through elective abortions each day. That's 16 and a half thousand children killed every week. Two states have suspended elective abortion to make more resources available...Should more states be doing the same?"

Even Trump seemed confused by the question, and notably didn't wade into the abortion aspect of the question:

"I think what we're doing, we're trying to, as a group ,governors—and that's Republicans and Democrats—we're just working together to solve this problem. What you're mentioning has been going on for a long time and it's a sad event, a lot of sad events in this country. But what we're doing now is working on the virus...and I think we're doing a great job—as good a job as you can possibly do."

People noticed that even Trump—either purposely or otherwise—didn't take the bait from one of his favorite networks.




Rion, who is Asian-American, previously made headlines when she asked Trump—who'd been criticized for describing the virus as "Chinese Virus"—if the phrase "Chinese food" was racist.

Her questions, while satiating viewers who prioritize "owning the libs" over potentially lifesaving information, have only confirmed the degradation of the press corps under the Trump era.




OAN's only redeemable quality? It doesn't claim to be "fair and balanced."


Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images // Duffy-Marie Arnoult/WireImage

Even in the face of a global pandemic, President Donald Trump hasn't dispensed with his typical pettiness.

The President made that perfectly clear on Sunday afternoon, as deaths caused by the national health crisis continued to increase.

Keep reading... Show less
JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images // Hernando County Sheriff

After weeks of dismissing the current pandemic as little more than a flu overblown by the media to undermine his presidency, President Donald Trump and his administration are finally beginning to acknowledge the severity of the threat posed by the virus that's upended daily life in the United States.

Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne apparently hadn't gotten that memo.

Keep reading... Show less