Politics

Trump Suggests ‘Wet Rag’ Franken Should Have Fought Allegations

Former Democratic senator resigned amid sexual misconduct charges

Then-Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., at a hearing in 2017 before he stepped down later that month amid sexual misconduct allegations. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A national uproar over sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh did not stop President Donald Trump from suggesting a former Democratic senator “folded” under his own allegations.

“Boy, did he fold up like a wet rag. Man, man, he was gone so fast,” Trump said during a campaign rally Thursday night in Minnesota, the state that Franken represented in the Senate.

“It was like, ‘Oh, he did something,’” the president said mockingly.“So Franken [said], ‘Oh I resign. I quit.’”

[Pence Ready for Potential Kavanaugh Tie-Breaker]

Franken, a former “Saturday Night Live” star and comedian, resigned in December under pressure from Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer of New York and most of the Democratic caucus. Late last year, the president tweeted that pictures of Franken showing him pretending to grope a woman as she slept on a plane were “really bad.”

Trump’s comment threatened to derail Republican leaders’ efforts to secure 50 votes to confirm Kavanaugh, who was forced to testify late last week about sexual assault allegations dating to his high school days. He denies those and other accusations.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has teed up a Friday morning procedural vote that would set up an up-or-down vote sometime Saturday.

Republican senators have tried walking a fine line about sexual assault, focusing instead on what they see as a lack of corroboration of the claims against the nominee and how Democrats handled them. The president, however, has not — despite at least a dozen sexual misconduct allegations of his own.

[White House Puts ‘Fabergé Egg’ Ford in Frying Pan]

First, he used the Kavanaugh saga to warn that a single allegation against any man can “destroy” and otherwise “exemplary life,” saying now is a “very scary” time for men in American. Then, he fired off the Franken blast on Thursday night.

He also took a shot at Franken’s appointed replacement, Democratic Sen. Tina Smith, saying he — and no one else — has ever heard of her.

Watch: Trump’s Remarks on Sexual Assault Have Been All Over the Map

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