(KMSP) - Sen. Amy Klobuchar says the decision of fellow Minnesota Sen. Al Franken to resign from the Senate “is the right decision.” Franken made the announcement from the Senate floor Thursday morning, 24 hours after a majority of Senate Democrats called on the two-term lawmaker to resign after two new allegations surfaced.
"Today I am announcing that in the coming weeks, I will be resigning as a member of the United States Senate," Franken said.
Statement from Sen. Amy Klobuchar
“Today Senator Franken acknowledged that he could no longer serve in the Senate and resigned. As he and I discussed yesterday, this is the right decision. Senator Franken has worked for years on behalf of the people of Minnesota and he has been a leader on issues that are fundamental to Americans’ lives, including education, privacy, healthcare and mental health. He has been a friend to me and to many in our state.
“As the women who have come forward to tell their stories across America have made clear, sexual harassment is never acceptable. In every workplace in America, including the U.S. Senate, we must confront the challenges of harassment and misconduct. Nothing is easy or pleasant about this, but we all must recognize that our workplace cultures—and the way we treat each other as human beings—must change.
“For Franni, the Franken family, Senator Franken’s friends and supporters in our state, it’s a very tough day. I want you to know I remain as committed as ever to working together and standing up for people, for common decency, and for our democracy during an incredibly difficult and divisive time in our country. And as we go forward together, we must never forget the words of Senator Paul Wellstone, whom Senator Franken quoted in part today, ‘Politics is not about power. Politics is not about money. Politics is not about winning for the sake of winning. Politics is about the improvement of people’s lives.’”
NO REPLACEMENT YET: Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton must now appoint someone to take Franken’s seat until 2018. The seat will be on the ballot in the November 2018 election. The winner will serve out the rest of Franken’s term until 2020, when they would once again be up for re-election. Dayton says he has not yet decided on who he will appoint to fill the upcoming vacancy.