Twitter was divided on Thursday as people voiced their approval — or disappointment — over Sen. Al Franken’s resignation amid multiple allegations of sexual misconduct.
Much like Franken himself did in his emotional Senate-floor speech, many tweeters pointed out the irony that the Minnesota Democrat was forced to resign over his alleged actions while other politicians who have been accused of sexual misconduct — including President Donald Trump and embattled Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore — have not faced consequences. (Trump and Moore have denied the allegations against them.)
Actress Ellen Barkin showed support for Franken while decrying Democrats for their part in his resignation, tweeting: “1) Dear @alfranken , I am a woman. I have seen more than my fair share of abuse from all sides of the aisle. I am completely shook that you are resigning. When will dems see that they get nothing by taking the ‘high ground’ except a 6ft grave. #resist.”
1) Dear @alfranken , I am a woman. I have seen more than my fair share of abuse from all sides of the aisle. I am completely shook that you are resigning. When will dems see that they get nothing by taking the “high ground” except a 6ft grave. #resist— Ellen Barkin (@EllenBarkin) December 7, 2017
Sad to see that Sen. Al Franken has had his political career cut short by foolish actions he took many years ago that showed a lack of respect for women.— Grant Stern (@grantstern) December 7, 2017
If he's leaving the Senate, then why is Donald Trump still President? How can the RNC support Roy Moore?#TheResistance
In this impt year of #MeToo , @alfranken should now be remembered for the example he has set for others on this serious issue.— David Jolly (@DavidJollyFL) December 7, 2017
He accepted responsibility, apologized, spoke encouragingly of the women, agreed to be investigated, & fairly or not, now resigned.
This is how a Senator would resign on The West Wing.— ????Joshua Malina???? (@JoshMalina) December 7, 2017
Also... Anyone else for #DueProcess ? How about an investigation into @alfranken (and @MooreSenate and @realDonaldTrump !!!) FIRST? @ACLU @benwizner @billyeichner @billmaher @SarahKSilverman @AoDespair @petersarsgaard @jeremyscahill https://t.co/llSTGlhtUa— Maggie Gyllenhaal (@mgyllenhaal) December 7, 2017
Al Franken has announced his resignation. Good. It was the right decision.— Charlotte Clymer?????????? (@cmclymer) December 7, 2017
Now, I need every Democrat in the Senate and House to demand the resignation or impeachment of Donald Trump. Immediately.
Franken also received surprising support from Republicans, including Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, who said the second-term senator should not have stepped down.
Franken 1,053,205 Minnesotans picked him for senate in 2014— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) December 7, 2017
30 self appointed 'pure'senators want him out
What happened to popular vote
Franken should not have resigned. His fate should have been left 2the people of MN. Moore, who had sexual contact w a 14-yr old, should drop out. Conyers, who hit on his employees, should have resigned. Franken is a creep who acted inappropriatly, but his facts are different.— Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) December 7, 2017
Others suggested that two wrongs don’t make a right, saying that Franken was right to resign but that Trump and Moore should follow suit.
It’s true: if Al Franken should resign, so should Donald Trump. But the fact that Trump won’t resign doesn’t mean Franken shouldn’t. Democrats holding themselves to higher standards is a step towards everyone being held to higher standards. It doesn’t happen all at once.— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) December 7, 2017
Al Franken did need to resign. But I can’t avoid seeing him as a sacrificial lamb. I’m morally certain that many sitting Senators and Representatives of both parties — and both genders — are guilty of even worse sexual exploitation both in office and before being elected.— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) December 7, 2017
Al Franken lost his senate seat.— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) December 7, 2017
Harvey Weinstein lost his company.
Anthony Weiner is in jail.
Roy Moore is STILL the Republican candidate for Senate.
Donald Trump is STILL the PRESIDENT.
Don't tell me there's no difference between the parties.
Hollywood:— Billy Baldwin (@BillyBaldwin) December 7, 2017
Harvey Weinstein ??
Kevin Spacey ??
Louie CK ??
Bryan Singer ??
Jeffrey Tambor ??
Charlie Rose ??
Matt Lauer ??
Garrison Keillor ??
John Conyers ??
Al Franken ??
Trump & Roy Moore... crickets?
The GOP is a disgrace.#TrumpRussia pic.twitter.com/NduObanzcO
Franken has been accused of inappropriately touching seven women, including Leeann Tweeden, a morning news anchor on KABC radio in Los Angeles, who alleged last month that Franken groped and forcibly kissed her during a USO tour in 2006, before he became a senator. Tweeden, who released a photo of the former Saturday Night Live star apparently grabbing her breasts while she was sleeping, said she accepted Franken’s subsequent apology and didn’t think he had to step down.
But as more women came forward with misconduct allegations against Franken, 66, the Senate Ethics Committee launched an investigation into the second-term senator. On Wednesday, a seventh woman, a former Democratic congressional aide, alleged that Franken tried to forcibly kiss her after a taping of his radio show in 2006. Franken, who has been married to wife Franni Bryson since 1975, has repeatedly apologized for his inappropriate behavior, which he said was unintentional but “crossed a line” for some women.
Franken said Thursday that he will be resigning from the Senate in the coming weeks. He added that “some of the allegations against me are simply not true. Others I remember very differently.”
He also spoke about the sexual misconduct allegations against Trump and Moore, pointing out the “irony in the fact that I am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the Oval Office and a man who has repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the Senate with the full support of his party.”
Franken’s resignation came one day after at least eight female Democratic senators called for him to step down, including Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Patty Murray of Washington, Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, Kamala Harris of California, Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Mazie Hirono of Hawaii and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan.
Several female senators who called for Franken’s resignation were wiping their eyes, nose as they hugged Franken after his speech— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) December 7, 2017
But on Thursday, several female senators who called for Franken’s resignation were seen wiping their eyes and nose as they hugged Franken after his speech, Politico’s Seung Min Kim reported.