Klobuchar Doesn't Want Franken to Run for Office Again

August 3, 2018

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) was not enthused at the prospect of her former colleague Al Franken running for office again, saying Thursday there were many ways for him to pursue public service besides returning to Congress.

Franken announced his resignation in December, amid pressure from Democratic colleagues, after multiple women emerged to accuse him of past unwanted touching and kissing. Klobuchar said in a statement at the time she agreed with his decision, but she did not publicly call on him to step down because of their personal relationship.

Franken has kept a low profile since officially leaving the U.S. Senate in January, but he said this week he was not ruling out running for office again.

CNN host Alisyn Camerota noted Franken resigned "during this #MeToo moment," only mentioning the picture where he pretended to grope the breasts of Leeann Tweeden and not mentioning eight women who came forward to accuse him of misconduct.

"Would you like to see Al Franken run again?" Camerota asked.

"Al made his own decision to resign, so I don't see this in the cards that he's running right now," Klobuchar said.

She added she's always said he'll do something else with his life, such as in the nonprofit realm.

"He's incredibly creative, so let's see what he does," Klobuchar said.

"This isn't just wild speculation," Camerota said. "He's the one saying he hasn't ruled it out, and I guess I'm just wondering, would you like to see him back in Congress?"

"I'd like to see him back in doing good work, and using his skills and his passion for public service in a way, but that doesn't mean that he necessarily has to run for office," Klobuchar said.

She said Democrats in Minnesota were focused on the 2018 midterms, such as the special election campaign of Sen. Tina Smith (D., Minn.), who was appointed to fill Franken's seat.

"I understand, and he's your friend, and I know that I'm putting you in an awkward position," Camerota said.

"I have not talked to him about running for office again, and I'm hoping that he works on some of the issues he cares a lot about, and there's many ways you can do that besides running for office," Klobuchar said.