Stephanie Kemplin, a 41-year-old Ohio Army veteran, claims that Senator Al Franken groped her in December 2003, telling CNN that while she was deployed in Kuwait, the Minnesota Democrat cupped her breast during a photo op.
Kemplin, a 41-year-old resident of Maineville, Ohio, is now the fifth woman in two weeks to accuse Franken of inappropriate touching and the second woman to allege that it happened while Franken was on a USO tour. Three of the five women have been identified by name. In addition to Kemplin, Leeann Tweeden and Lindsay Menz have also accused Franken of groping.
Speaking to CNN, Kemplin said that while she was stationed in the Middle East during the Iraq War, she met Franken while he was visiting troops with the USO.
“When he put his arm around me, he groped my right breast. He kept his hand all the way over on my breast. I’ve never had a man put their arm around me and then cup my breast. So he was holding my breast on the side,” Kemplin said.
Kemplin said Franken’s inappropriate touching lasted anywhere from five to 10 seconds and that she eventually turned her body to remove Franken’s hand off her breast before the picture was taken.
Franken released a statement on Monday, November 27, saying that he is going to be “a lot more sensitive, and a lot more careful”. Franken said he does not plan on resigning from his Senate seat. He intends to fully comply with the Senate ethics investigation into his conduct.
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