Less than one week after Senator Al Franken was accused of sexual misconduct, a second woman has come forward with a new set of allegations against the Minnesota Democrat.
Thirty-three-year-old Lindsay Menz said on Monday that Franken groped her during a photo opportunity at the 2010 Minnesota state fair.
“[Franken] pulled me in really close, like awkward close, and as my husband took the picture, he put his hand full-fledged on my rear,” Menz told CNN. “It was wrapped tightly around my butt cheek.”
“I was like, oh my God, what’s happening,” she added.
Menz said she described the groping immediately to both her husband, who had taken the photograph, and father.
“I take thousands of photos at the state fair surrounded by hundreds of people, and I certainly don’t remember taking this picture,” Franken said in a statement to CNN. “I feel badly that Ms. Menz came away from our interaction feeling disrespected.”
The new allegations are sure to add fuel to the already growing chorus of critics who are demanding Franken step down following Los Angeles news anchor Leeann Tweeden’s initial accusations against him. However, Menz insisted to CNN that while Tweeden’s allegations helped inspire her to speak out about her own experience, the two incidents are different.
“I don’t want to paint my story in the same light as hers,” Menz said, pointing out that Tweeden’s story describes something much more serious than her own.
Following Tweeden’s allegations, Franken agreed to submit to a Senate ethics investigation. It is unclear whether this latest accusation will also be investigated.