New Franken Accuser: He Groped My Breast in Photo Op

Army veteran says incident took place on 2003 USO tour; plus 6th accuser says he tried for a kiss
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 30, 2017 9:50 AM CST
Franken Hit With 2nd USO Tour Allegation
Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., speaks to the media on Capitol Hill on Monday.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

An Army veteran is one of two women to come forward with new sexual misconduct allegations against Al Franken, just days after the senator issued an apology—and she's offering a story similar to those of earlier accusers. Stephanie Kemplin, 41, tells CNN Franken touched her right breast for five to 10 seconds when he put his arm around her during a photo op in Kuwait, where Kemplin was stationed and Franken was visiting on a USO tour, in December 2003. "It was long enough that he should have known if it was an accident,” says Kemplin, adding she adjusted her position before the photo was snapped. A rep for Franken tells CNN he "never intentionally engaged in this kind of conduct" and "remains fully committed" to an ethics investigation.

Meanwhile, Jezebel reports on a sixth accuser, a former unnamed elected official in New England, who tells the site Franken went in for a kiss after a spring 2006 interview for his Air America radio show, which he'd taped in her community (Jezebel confirmed she was on the show). The woman says she stuck her hand out to shake his, but Franken instead leaned forward with his mouth open, trying for a "wet, open-mouthed kiss"; it ended up on her cheek when she turned her head. The woman's sister and a friend both tell Jezebel she told them of the incident not long after it happened. "My intent in coming forward is not to negate the good work he's done or smear his name," the woman says. "I want him to take personal responsibility for his actions, learn from this, not repeat the behavior, and go forward with respect in all his interactions with women." (More Al Franken stories.)

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