×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Trump Pounces on Al Franken Sexual Misconduct Allegation: ‘Al Frankenstien Picture Is Really Bad’

An analysis of President Donald Trump’s tweets. 

The tweets:

“The Al Frankenstien picture is really bad, speaks a thousand words. Where do his hands go in pictures 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 while she sleeps? …..,” he tweeted.

He followed up with this:

“And to think that just last week he was lecturing anyone who would listen about sexual harassment and respect for women. Lesley Stahl tape?”

What’s Behind It: “Al Frankenstien”? Sounds like a Mel Brooks joke. Trump is pouncing on the allegations facing Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), a frequent foe. Leeann Tweeden, a newscaster and former model, wrote on a post on the KABC website on Thursday in which she said Franken kissed and groped her without her consent during a 2006 USO tour. She included a picture in which Franken appears to be trying to touch her breasts as she is sleeping.

Franken was then a radio talk show host, comedy writer, and author, and not yet a senator, but he issued an apology and called for an ethics investigation of the incident. In interviews on Thursday and Friday, Tweeden accepted the apology and said on “Good Morning America” that she was not calling for him to step down.

The reference to Stahl was to a New York magazine article in which Franken talked about a “Saturday Night Live” skit.

Why Now: Trump did not mention Roy Moore, the other political figure who has lately faced sexual harassment and assault allegations, including seeking sexual relations with a 14-year-old girl when he was in his 30s, and sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl. Moore, running in a special election for U.S. Senate, is backed by Steve Bannon, Trump’s former chief strategist. Even though a number of Republicans on Capitol Hill have called for Moore to step aside, the president has said little himself.

What’s the Fallout: Take Moore out of the equation. Trump faces his own allegations of sexual misconduct by more than a dozen women. His tweet triggered an immediate reaction on Twitter, including one from Gretchen Carlson, the former Fox News host who came forward with sexual harassment allegations against Roger Ailes that eventually forced him to resign as the chieftain of Fox News.

As Carlson has pointed out, the issue of sexual harassment and assault aren’t exclusive to one party, nor are they to one industry or country. Trump may be trying to score political points with his tweet, but it’s likely to provoke new questions about allegations against him. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said a couple of weeks ago that those accusers were lying, but Trump faces a defamation lawsuit from one of the women, Summer Zervos, for making just that claim.

More Politics

  • Trump Jim Acosta CNN White House

    The Gradual Disappearing Act of the White House Daily Press Briefing

    WASHINGTON — The Trump White House has dropped an event that used to be a prized invite for journalists and their families in D.C.: A holiday party for the media. But another tradition has been disappearing from the West Wing agenda as well: the daily press briefing. The regular televised afternoon back and forth between [...]

  • Nexstar Logo

    Nexstar Settles With Justice Department Over Sharing of Ad Information

    WASHINGTON — Nexstar Media Group, which recently announced plans to acquire Tribune Media and become the largest owner of TV stations in the country, has settled with the Justice Department as it investigates broadcasters’ sharing of competitive advertising rate information with rivals. Six other station groups, including Tribune Media, reached a settlement with the DOJ [...]

  • Donald Trump

    National Enquirer Parent Admits to Making Karen McDougal Payments to Help Trump in 2016 Election

    WASHINGTON — Federal prosecutors said National Enquirer’s parent company, American Media, admitted that it made a $150,000 payment to ex-Playboy model Karen McDougal “to ensure that the woman did not publicize damaging allegations” about Donald Trump in advance of the 2016 presidential election. AMI’s admission could bolster any case prosecutors make against Trump for violating [...]

  • Ajit Pai

    FCC to Launch Review of Media Ownership Rules, Including Ban on Broadcast Network Mergers

    WASHINGTON — The FCC will review whether to modify or even eliminate a series of media ownership proposals, including a current ban on mergers among the four major broadcast networks. The review, mandated by Congress every four years, includes no specific policy proposals, but will take public comment on whether changes are warranted. The FCC will [...]

  • US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg Says She's 'Feeling Just Fine' After Falling Last Month

    WASHINGTON — As Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg watched Focus Features and Participant Media’s “On the Basis of Sex” for the first time at a National Archives screening in Washington, D.C., she got big applause for how she described her wellbeing after suffering a fall last month. “I’m feeling just fine, and I am meeting my [...]

  • Michael Cohen

    Michael Cohen Sentenced to Three Years in Prison

    Michael Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison after pleading guilty to a series of charges, including a campaign finance violation in which he implicated President Trump. In an appearance in a New York federal court before his sentencing, Cohen said that he was sorry for his crimes, explaining that when he served as [...]

  • Sundar Pichai Hearing

    Key Takeaways From Google CEO Sundar Pichai's Day in Congress

    WASHINGTON — Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai made it through a 3.5-hour hearing before the House Judiciary Committee free of committing the company to new business practices or behavior. He didn’t even promise not to pursue a censored search engine in China, even as human rights groups have called on the company to abandon the project. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content