Trump-backed Nebraska gubernatorial candidate accused of groping women is suing a state senator who accused him

Charles Herbster
Businessman Charles Herbster, a Nebraska Republican gubernatorial hopeful.Tristan Wheelock/Bloomberg/Getty Images
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  • Eight women, including State Sen. Julie Slama, have accused Charles Herbster of sexual misconduct.

  • Herbster has said the sexual misconduct allegations against him are false.

  • Herbster on Friday sued Slama, accusing her of lying in a "politically motivated" attack.

Charles Herbster, a Republican gubernatorial candidate accused of sexual misconduct, is suing one of his accusers, State Sen. Julie Slama.

According to a defamation lawsuit filed Friday in Johnson County, Nebraska, Herbster – who is CEO and President of Carico Farms and Herbster Angus Farms – denied sexually assaulting Slama and said the accusations are "politically motivated."

"As set forth in my lawsuit, the false accusations and attacks on my character are part of a greater scheme calculated to try and defeat my candidacy. I will not stop fighting until the truth is told and my name is cleared," Herbster said in a press release from his campaign.

Slama has endorsed Herbster's opponent, Republican Jim Pillen, who sits on the Nebraska Board of Regents. Herbster has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump.

An April 14 report from the Nebraska Examiner quoted eight women who accused Herbster of sexual misconduct between 2017 and 2022. Six of the women said they were groped by him. One woman accused Herbster of forcibly kissing her after cornering her.

Slama, the only woman who wasn't quoted anonymously in the story, said Herbster reached up her skirt in 2019. She later repeated the claim in a public statement.

Herbster, who is set to campaign with Trump in Omaha on April 29, denied the allegations.

A lawyer for Slama said that the claims made by Herbster against her in the lawsuit were "without merit," in a statement to the Examiner.

"Senator Slama will stand strong against any attempt to weaponize the judicial process to scare victims from coming forward to share the truth," Lopez told the Examiner.

Some Nebraska state officials have expressed support for Slama, including GOP Gov. Pete Ricketts and fellow female state legislators across the ideological spectrum.

"This is not a question of politics — it is an issue of character and basic human decency. Charles Herbster's behavior is completely unacceptable for anyone, especially someone seeking a public office of authority and trust," the female senators said in a signed letter.

Herbster and Slama did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider