Three dozen women who worked with Sen. Al Franken on the set of Saturday Night Live have released a joint statement in defense the Democratic Senator as he faces allegations of sexual misconduct. Franken worked on and off for SNL from its premiere in 1975 to 1995.
The women criticized Franken for his actions toward Leeann Tweeden – who alleged he aggressively and forcibly kissed her and groped her more than ten years ago during a USO skit for the troops. They wrote that Franken’s behavior toward Tweeden was “stupid and foolish,” but they also wrote that “not one of us ever experienced any inappropriate behavior” while they were working with him.
The women added:
“We feel compelled to stand up for Al Franken, whom we have all had the pleasure of working with over the years on Saturday Night Live (SNL). What Al did was stupid and foolish, and we think it was appropriate for him to apologize to Ms. Tweeden, and to the public,” the women wrote. “In our experience, we know Al as a devoted and dedicated family man, a wonderful comedic performer, and an honorable public servant.
“That is why we are moved to quickly and directly affirm that after years of working with him, we would like to acknowledge that not one of us ever experienced any inappropriate behavior; and mention our sincere appreciation that he treated each of us with the utmost respect and regard.”
JUST IN: Women staff of "Saturday Night Live" sign letter in support of Sen. Al Franken pic.twitter.com/osN6IwMgvB
— NBC News (@NBCNews) November 21, 2017
Just a few days ago, eight female staffers, ranging from communication personnel to policy aides, who’ve worked with Franken in the Senate, released a joint statement defending the senator, saying, “He valued our work and our opinions and was a champion for women both in the legislation he supported and in promoting women to leadership roles in our office.”