Should Franken step down from the Senate? I don’t think so. Tweeden has repeatedly said she doesn’t want him to. So Franken’s a masher. So what? There are worse things a person can be. There are better things, but there are worse things. I think we may need Franken.
My initial reaction was similar to yours. I thought, “Why not just handle this the way Tweeden wants it handled. She’s the victim, here, not the thousands of pundits with opinions.” Then more accusations came out. Three more women came forward with their stories, and Franken can’t seem to remember any of them.
One thing I got from watching this interview with Lauren Sivan is that she was struck by how Harvey Weinstein, years later, did not remember cornering her in an empty restaurant and masturbating into a potted plant in front of her. It occurred to her that he must do awful things on a regular basis to be able to forget a specific incidence of it like that. This extremely good piece of insight makes me pretty skeptical of Franken. He either forgets things altogether or simply “remembers it differently.” Why does he keep forgetting groping women? The women in question remember it.
As for whether we need Franken, we absolutely do not, and besides being an unacceptable “lesser evil/he’s not that bad” argument, it’s also simply not the case that he is really in this to serve us. He is a corporate Democrat through-and-through, with big donors that include Comcast, Time Warner, and Microsoft at a moment when net neutrality is under attack. He could resign and be replaced by any number of people who can do more good for Minnesota and the United States than he can.