Schumer Dodges Question on Whether Franken's Forced Resignation Was 'Right'

January 16, 2018

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) on Monday avoided giving a direct answer to a question from Stephen Colbert regarding whether Democrats' decision to push former Sen. Al Franken (D., Minn.) to resign "against his will" was the "right thing to do."

Schumer joined Colbert on the "Late Show" where they in part discussed Democrats' chances of taking control of the House and Senate after the 2018 midterm. During the discussion, Colbert brought up Franken's resignation following multiple accusations of sexual harassment.

"Well, you lost one of the stars of the Democratic Party this year, one of the biggest fundraisers of the Democrats in Al Franken," Colbert said.

"Yes," Schumer agreed.

"Looking back on how that was handled, that Franken was asked to resign–against his will, as you can tell from the speech he gave–before the ethics investigation was over," Colbert said. "Do you feel now that that was the right thing to do?"

Many Democratic lawmakers initially called for due processes in Franken's case, and for a ethics committee investigation to first occur. However, many of Franken's colleagues changed their tune and called for his resignation as the pressure rose against Franken and other high-profile individuals in politics, media and Hollywood.

Schumer expressed his support for victims of sexual harassment, but did not comment directly on Franken.

"Well, look, I am a strong believer in #metoo. Women have been abused, taken advantage of in so many different ways that I think that a strong stand in that regard is very important," Schumer said. "You can look at each individual case, as you should, and people should get some protections, but I have a great deal of sympathy for the women who say this has gone on too long and we have to be really strong to fight it."