Sen. Al Franken calls for investigation into groping allegations - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Sen. Al Franken calls for investigation into groping allegations

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LOS ANGELES -

United States Senator Al Franken is calling for an ethics investigation into allegations of sexual improprieties being made against him.

In a social media post, Franken said he would cooperate with such an investigation into claims made by Los Angeles radio news anchor Leann Tweeden in a letter posted on the 790 KABC website accusing the Minnesota Democrat of “kissing and groping” her, without her consent.

According to the letter, the alleged incident occurred in December 2006 during a USO Tour to entertain the troops in the Middle East.

The former model who has appeared on the covers of FHM, Maxim, and Playboy, said Franken had written her into a skit that included a kiss.

Tweeden says the incident came when Franken insisted that they rehearse the kiss.

“He repeated that actors really need to rehearse everything and that we must practice the kiss. I said ‘OK’ so he would stop badgering me.” writes Tweeden. “We did the line leading up to the kiss and then he came at me, put his hand on the back of my head, mashed his lips against mine and aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth.”

Saying she felt disgusted and violated, Tweeden says she pushed Franken away

Tweeden says when she actually performed the skit, she turned her head away from Franken.

According to the letter, no one saw what happened backstage and she didn't report the alleged incident to the Army or the USO.

Tweeden says she later discovered a picture that a picture taken during the USO tour showed Franken with both of his hands on her breasts as she was sleeping. Tweeden was wearing a helmet and a flak jacket at the time.

Saying she was afraid of the potential backlash that going public may have on her career as a broadcaster, Tweeden says she remained silent until recent revelations from other women claiming to be victims of sexual harassment.

In his Facebook post, Franken says he doesn't recall the rehearsal skit in the same way Tweeden does but says he understands "why we need to listen to and believe women's experiences.

Franken writes that he has no excuse for the picture of him touching Tweeden's breasts as she was sleeping.

"I look at it now and I feel disgusted with myself. It isn't funny. It's completely inappropriate. It's obvious how Leeann would feel violated by that picture." writes Franken. "And, what's more, I can see how millions of other women would feel violated by it—women who have had similar experiences in their own lives, women who fear having those experiences, women who look up to me, women who have counted on me."

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