Okay, so this is pretty funny. Apparently the Democrat Party is already coming to the realization that Sen. Al Franken’s resignation did not buy them the warm, fuzzy feelings they were hoping it would. Senators all over the party banded together to force Franken to resign after he was accused of multiple instances of sexual harassment, and their game plan was as simple as it was transparent. They would position themselves as the party of sexual morality (a bad joke if we’ve ever heard it) and thus gain the high ground on Republicans, who were still supporting Roy Moore and President Trump. With any luck, they would be able to use the Franken resignation as ammunition against the president, perhaps leading to a congressional investigation of the allegations against him. And even if that didn’t materialize, they would at least have the goodwill of the voters heading into a tough 2018 midterm battle, right?
Eh, not so much.
In reality, Democrat pundits largely said that Franken’s accusations weren’t that bad and that he should have never resigned. Republican pundits certainly didn’t take Franken’s resignation as a sign that they should now start attacking Trump. And voters saw all of these things through the political lenses they were already wearing. Democrats gained nothing…but at least the Senate was free from at least one extra pervert.
Well, that’s not good enough for the Democrat Party. Now that they see they aren’t going to score any political points for sending Franken on his way, they want him to renege on his resignation and stay where he is. In remarks to Politico, at least four Democrat senators have expressed regret that they pushed Franken to resign, now saying that he should have been allowed to go through the ethics investigation before making any decisions about his political future.
“What they did to Al was atrocious, the Democrats,” said West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin. “The most hypocritical thing I’ve ever seen done to a human being — and then have enough guts to sit on the floor, watch him give his speech and go over and hug him? That’s hypocrisy at the highest level I’ve ever seen in my life. Made me sick.”
Manchin is known for “going rogue” when it comes to the party, but he’s not the only one who says the process was rushed. Others, who did not want to go on the record, agreed with the West Virginian.
“I think we acted prematurely, before we had all the facts,” said one anonymous senator. “In retrospect, I think we acted too fast.”
Others felt pressured to weigh in on Franken’s allegations, but because they were so swamped with other political duties, they felt they didn’t give the matter careful thought before voicing their opinion. They, too, wish that Franken would take back his resignation and stay in office while the Ethics Committee completes its investigation.
That doesn’t look likely to happen – Franken’s replacement has already been named – but it shows you two things: One, this party is so desperate to grab a good headline that they don’t bother weighing the pros and cons of a decision. That’s not exactly what Americans need in a majority party. Two, it shows you that they don’t give two damns about sexual harassment; they only care about using this issue inasmuch as it allows them to regain political power in Washington.