US President Donald Trump has sparked controversy with tweets criticizing Democratic senator Al Franken for sexual abuse while keeping mum on similar allegations against his party fellow Roy Moore, a nominee for the upcoming Senate election in Alabama.
“The Al Frankenstein [Franken] picture is really bad, speaks a thousand words,” Donald Trump wrote referring to a picture of Al Franken, who has recently been accused of sexual misconduct by journalist Leeann Tweeden.
The photo Trump mentioned was posted by Tweeden when she decided to tell her story about Franken. The picture shows Franken apparently fondling Tweeden’s breasts while she slept.
— Leeann Tweeden (@LeeannTweeden) November 16, 2017
Trump then referred to a vulgar joke about rape Franken reportedly made when he was a writer with “Saturday Night Live” in the 1990s. Franken offered an idea for a sketch in which he would give reporter Lesley Stahl pills and “rape her” in the closet.
.And to think that just last week he was lecturing anyone who would listen about sexual harassment and respect for women. Lesley Stahl tape?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 17, 2017
By commenting on the Franken case, Trump has made his first statement on sexual misconduct allegations against US politicians that have recently emerged in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, The Guardian noted.
Trump’s attacks on Franken, however, has provoked controversy since he has not yet made any public comment on Roy Moore, a Republican senatorial nominee who was accused last week of sexually assaulting a teenage girl back in 1977 and is now facing more allegations from other women.
You comment about All Franken's behavior, but will not comment about Roy Moore's behavior? What both of the men did should never be tolerated.
— Amanda Beziat (@amanda2024) November 17, 2017
Frankly this is all out war – they attacked Moore and are facing a huge backlash. Tit for tat time nice to see conservatives get mad and really fight back.
— Marine Momma (@lovedogs4er) November 17, 2017
Interesting that you jump all over this "story" but say nothing about Roy Moore. With is that?
— Justin Gayler (@Fundy23) November 17, 2017
Reminder: Trump has still not publicly commented on the allegations against Roy Moore.
— Austin Braun ☃️ (@AustinOnSocial) November 17, 2017
In September, Trump tweeted about Moore, calling him a “really great guy who ran a fantastic race.”
Spoke to Roy Moore of Alabama last night for the first time. Sounds like a really great guy who ran a fantastic race. He will help to #MAGA!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 27, 2017
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Thursday, “The president believes that these allegations are very troubling and should be taken seriously and that people of Alabama should decide who their next senator should be.”
Before he was elected president, Trump himself was accused of sexual misconduct by over a dozen women.
Trump has long threatened to sue the women who have made those claims, but he has not yet done so. Sanders has said that the White House’s official position is that all the women who accused Trump of sexual misbehavior were lying.