Sen. Al Franken's accusers and the accusations they made against him

Sen. Al Franken's accusers and the accusations they made against him

Senator Al Franken, back at the Capitol for the first time since groping accusations emerged almost two weeks ago, gave no indication on Monday that his political career was in peril, telling reporters that he would work to try to regain the trust of women, voters and his colleagues. You can read them, but the issue remains the same: Franken acknowledges that he is unaware he is assaulting women.

"I know that I've let a lot of people down, people of Minnesota, my colleagues, my staff, my supporters, and everyone who has counted on me to be a champion for women", he said. Instead, he took a page from Crisis Control 101: Express vague regrets and contrition, take a few questions, resolve that you're going to work hard at regaining your constituents' trust - as though you're somehow beginning an act of heartfelt penance - and then end the press availability. I have a long way back to win back the trust of the people of Minnesota.

"What behavior demands resignation?" a reporter asked Franken, whose spokesperson said last week that the senator has no plans to step down over the allegations. "And so I can not speculate".

Franken said he would continue to learn from his mistakes, but again refused to resign. I'm going to fight this tax cut.

He continued: "This has been a shock and it has been extremely humbling. I'm going to be held accountable and I'm going to try to be productive in the way I speak about this".

When Murphy asked about Leeann Tweeden's allegations, the morning news anchor at a Los Angeles radio station who accused Franken of forcibly kissing and groping her when she was asleep, Franken said his memory of the events was different and that he has apologized to her. Tweeden also released a photo in which Franken appeared to place his hands over her breasts while she was sleeping.

"I apologized to her and I meant it", Franken said.

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A Survey USA/KSTP poll taken before Franken's apology found 22 percent of Minnesotans want him to remain in office, 33 percent say resign and 36 percent want to wait for the Ethics Committee findings.

Four women, including Tweeden, have accused Franken of groping them.

Carnahan says Franken's apology is not enough, accusing the Junior Senator of blaming harassment victims without admitting wrongdoing.

Franken apologized to Tweeden in two separate statements. "I've let a lot of people down and I'm hoping I can make it up to them and gradually regain their trust", Franken said Monday.

"I understand I am going to have to do everything I can going forward to be enormously sensitive", he said during the interview.

"I am ashamed of that photo", Franken said. "I can't say that I haven't done that".

"I hug people, and in some of these encounters, the pictures or meetings, some women - and any is too many - have felt that I have crossed a line, and I am terribly sorry about that", he said.

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