Franken bows out … with no apology

Well, there wasn’t much contrition today in Al Franken’s announcement that he’s quitting the U.S. Senate.

Indeed, the junior Democratic senator from Minnesota said some of the allegations from women that he groped them were “untrue” and said he remembers others “differently” from what the women have alleged.

But he’s gone. He should be gone. The accusations were too credible to be denied. Sen. Franken couldn’t possibly continue in that body, particularly when most of his Democratic colleagues had demanded that he quit.

The culture in Washington well might be changing. Women have come forward to level serious accusations against powerful men. Those men are now being held to account for their behavior. Franken has been caught in the sausage-grinder that is pulverizing careers.

He did take note, however, that while he is quitting the Senate, a man who has admitted to committing acts of sexual assault — Donald John Trump — still occupies the White House as president of the United States.

Life ain’t fair, right?

While much of the political attention was focused on Al Franken, another member of Congress — Rep. Trent Franks — announced his resignation. Franks is a Republican — and a deeply conservative, deeply religious one at that — who is now the subject of an ethics investigation into, um, sexual harassment. 

Franks supposedly discussed surrogate parenting with some female staffers. He says he regrets having that discussion and the discomfort it caused “in the workplace.”

Now he’s gone.

My trick knee is telling me the congressional purge is just beginning.

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