Zephyr Teachout, a liberal activist who lost to Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), recently wrote a column taking Franken’s side.
Teachout lost in a primary election to serve as the state’s senator, and said Franken’s eventual resignation — Franken had not given a resignation date when he made the announcement a couple weeks ago — exposed a lack of due process in politics.
Teachout said the following in the op-ed:
Due process means a fair, full investigation, with a chance for the accused to respond. And proportionality means that while all forms of inappropriate sexual behavior should be addressed, the response should be based on the nature of the transgressions.
Both were missing in the hasty call for Senator Franken’s resignation. Some might point out, rightly, that Congress doesn’t have good procedures for dealing with harassment accusations. In fact, the congressional process to date has gone something like this: Lift up the rug and sweep the accusations underneath. It’s delay, deny, pay hush money and avoid the consequences.