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Trump criticizes Franken, remains silent on Roy Moore

19 November 2017

Even for Trump, this is low and extremely hypocritcal.

The clock, located about halfway down the front page of CNN's Politics section is titled: "Has Trump weighed in on Moore yet?"

President Donald Trump, despite numerous allegations that he has personally engaged in lewd conduct towards women, was quick to pile on, calling him "Al Frankenstien" (sic) and saying the picture was "really bad".

During the presidential campaign, Trump was accused by more than a dozen women of sexual harassment, many instances of which involved unwanted physical contact. But he left it to press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Thursday to offer a bare-bones comment. Dubbing the Senator "Frankenstein" the President is finding his tweets are getting a mixed reaction.

By weighing in on Franken, Trump potentially invites another round of scrutiny over the past accusations of sexual assault that have been levied against him - a risk that a source told CNN earlier this week was partially behind his decision to not comment on the Moore controversy. She relived her harrowing experience with Franken for KABC. "And none of us should get ahead of that", she added.

Implicit in the Trump approach is his and his aides' confidence that he has absorbed the political damage from his own past, while Democrats, who depend heavily on women voters, may have more to lose now.

Moore, now 70, has also denied any wrongdoing and said he will contest the December 12 poll.

"The president believes we can not allow a mere allegation, in this case one from many years ago, to destroy a person's life".

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He continued, "And to think that just last week he was lecturing anyone who would listen about sexual harassment and respect for women". Al Franken, D-Minn., after the comedian-turned-politician was outed for sexually harassing a woman while she was asleep - and awake - about a decade ago.

"Where do his hands go in pictures 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 while she sleeps?"

Until his late-night tweet, Trump did not inject himself into every part of the Washington drama.

A "Lesley Stahl tape" Trump mentioned in his second tweet refers to a New York Magazine story about a "Saturday Night Live" writers discussion where Franken suggests a joke about raping Leslie Stahl, a "60 Minutes" correspondent.

Franken's alleged misconduct occurred not long after he had moved home to Minnesota from NY, and was already positioning himself to run for Senate in 2008, a race that he narrowly won after a recount.

Franken, who joined the Senate in 2009, apologized to Tweeden on Thursday in two statements and said he would fully cooperate with an ethics investigation.

Trump said during his Asia trip that he would have more to say about Moore when he returned home.

But if the new standard in public life is that allegations that are widely believed against a figure like Moore, or Franken, require disqualification from political life, the President himself could find himself on unsafe ground.

Trump criticizes Franken, remains silent on Roy Moore