Seven appears to be DFL U.S. Sen. Al Franken's unlucky number.
After a seventh woman came forward Wednesday morning accusing Franken of unsolicited advances -- this time with Franken allegedly saying a kiss was his "right as an entertainer" -- the junior senator from Minnesota has run out of defenders.
With pressure mounting, Franken's office said he would make an "announcement" on Thursday. No other details were available, but all signs point to his resignation.
A growing list of Senate Democrats has called on Franken to leave office; Minnesota Pubilc Radio has the list at 15-and-counting, including Sens. Claire McCaskill (Missouri), Kristen Gillibrand (New York), Patty Murray (Washington), Kamala Harris (California), and Debbie Stabenow (Michigan).
Female senators made up the bulk of the first wave urging Franken to step down, but several men have since joined the chorus. Among them: Democratic National Commitee chairman Tom Perez, who tweeted a statement Wednesday morning.
Sen. Al Franken should step down. Everyone must share the responsibility of building a culture of trust and respect for women in every industry and workplace, and that includes our party.— Tom Perez (@TomPerez) December 6, 2017
Not even Franken's fellow Minnesotan in the Senate feels like defending him at this point. In a statement to media, DFL U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar's office said Klobuchar "personally spoke with Senator Franken," and reiterated that Franken "will be making an announcement tomorrow morning."
Ouch. Non-Minnesotans might not see it, but that's some real passive aggressive shade there. The statement's not even from Klobuchar; it's about her, and all it says is "That guy? Yeah, I talked to him." (Shrug.)
If indeed Franken does step down, his replacement would be appointed by DFL Gov. Mark Dayton. Whomever Dayton picked would then have to run to defend the seat in the November 2018 mid-term election.
After winning the seat in 2008 by the narrowest of margins, Franken comfortably won re-election in 2014, besting Republican candidate Mike McFadden by more than 10 points.
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