- The Washington Times - Monday, January 8, 2018

Newly sworn-in Minnesota Sen. Tina Smith said Monday that Al Franken did what he thought was right in stepping down.

Al was a really strong senator from Minnesota. He advocated so well for us. And I also know that the decision he made to resign was the decision that he felt was the best thing for Minnesota, and I respect the decision that he made,” Ms. Smith, a Democrat, said on CNN.

Ms. Smith said she understands why some Democrats are upset that Mr. Franken was seemingly forced to resign after several of his colleagues, particularly female senators, called on him to step down after multiple sexual harassment claims.

She was serving as lieutenant governor in Minnesota when she was appointed by Gov. Mark Dayton to take Mr. Franken’s place last month.

Ms. Smith said the larger issue was about how women should be treated in the workplace, and she mentioned television mogul Oprah Winfrey’s speech at the Golden Globes Sunday night.

“She gave a great speech last night, and I have a lot of respect for her, and the great thing about this country is that anybody can run for president,” Ms. Smith said when asked if Ms. Winfrey should run for president.

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