Politics

Klobuchar Assumes Sponsorship of Franken Sexual Assault Bill

Franken’s office had worked on bill with rape victim

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., has taken over a bill from Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., that would provide grants to law enforcement to train them how to question victims of sexual assault and other abuse. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Amy Klobuchar has assumed the sponsorship of a bill set to be introduced by fellow Minnesota Democrat Sen. Al Franken that would provide training grants for law enforcement personnel that questions victims of sexual assault and other abuse.

Franken’s office worked with 22-year-old Abby Honold to craft the bill. In 2014, Honold was raped by another student at the University of Minnesota, Daniel Drill-Mellum, a one-time intern for Franken.

“I had a lot of ideas for legislation, and I was hoping that the personal connection would help me get some time with his office, and it did,” Honold told CNN of working with Franken’s office.

A Los Angeles radio news host accused Franken of forcibly kissing and groping her in an open letter on her station’s website last week.

Franken has called for an the Senate ethics committee to investigate the matter, which occurred in 2006, when Franken was a member of the “Saturday Night Live” cast. He has said he will cooperate fully.

Klobuchar confirmed Sunday that her office was taking over sponsorship of the bill in a statement to CNN.

She also condemned Franken’s alleged actions.

“This should not have happened to Leeann Tweeden,” she said, referencing Leeann Tweeden, the radio host who said she has accepted Franken’s apology. “I strongly condemn this behavior and the Senate Ethics Committee must open an investigation. This is another example of why we need to change work environments and reporting practices across the nation, including in Congress.”

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