- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 16, 2017

Radio host Rush Limbaugh says Sen. Al Franken’s groping scandal is “gumming up” a Democratic Party plan to oust Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore and President Trump.

KABC Los Angeles anchor Leeann Tweeden upended the political world Thursday with accusations — and photographic evidence — of sexual misconduct by Mr. Franken while the two were part of a 2006 USO tour. Mr. Limbaugh told his millions of listeners as the news spread that Democrats may have to politically sacrifice the Minnesota senator, given their rhetoric on the Alabama Senate race and Mr. Trump.

“What are the Democrats going to do?” the conservative pundit said. “Seriously. What are the Democrats going to do? They’re trying to get rid of two Republicans, and here comes this big hypocrite, Al Franken, totally gumming up the works, totally screwing up the plan.

“I mean, they want to get rid of Roy Moore, and they want to use that to get rid of Donald Trump, and here comes Franken, and there’s an actual picture of Franken doing it,” Mr. Limbaugh said. “The woman is sleeping and she’s wearing, you know, camo gear on a C-17 on the way back from a USO tour.”

Mr. Moore’s Senate race has been marred by multiple accusations of sexual misconduct dating back to 1977. One of his seven accusers, Gena Richardson, told The Washington Post that he tried to force himself on her shortly before her 18th birthday.

“Would the Democrat Party be willing to throw Franken overboard in order to maintain the chance and the opportunity to get rid of Trump?” Mr. Limbaugh asked. “There’s a Democrat governor that could appoint a Democrat replacement for Franken. They would not lose a seat if they send him packing.

“If they give Franken a pass, how do they continue to go after Roy Moore?” he said. “Not that they couldn’t do it. Hypocrisy has a tough time attaching itself to these people, but they’ve got a problem, because they’ve got many, many eggs in this sexual harassment basket that they are using to get rid of people they don’t want.”

Ms. Tweeden claims Mr. Franken “aggressively stuck his tongue” in her mouth while practicing for a USO skit in the Middle East.

She added that she felt “violated” and “belittled” after seeing a photograph of the former comedian mockingly grab at her breasts as she slept in a Kevlar helmet and vest.

“I certainly don’t remember the rehearsal for the skit in the same way, but I send my sincerest apologies to Leeann,” Mr. Franken said in a statement. “As to the photo, it was clearly intended to be funny but wasn’t. I shouldn’t have done it.”

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