Pelosi’s Silence on Franken and Farenthold Sexual Harassment Cases Becomes Deafening

Pelosi’s Silence on Franken and Farenthold Sexual Harassment Cases Becomes Deafening


“At the end of the day, I would suspect that Nancy Pelosi is going to have to explain what is the discernible difference between Al Franken and John Conyers,” — Arnold Reed, Rep. John Conyers’ lawyer, to reporters on November 30.


Living in the land of the double standard.  No one can find it. I have to go back through my inbox and check to see where it may have gone. The question is: Where is House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi’s press release calling for the resignations of Sen. Al Franken and Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold?  For that matter: Where is Rep. Jackie Speier’s release? And uber-former prosecutor without-due-process Kathleen Rice’s?  For that matter, where is Rep. Jim Clyburn’s statement on all of those matters?

The same group of lawmakers that was quick to come racing out to say that Rep. John Conyers should resign is the same group that has now gone stone silent on more clear cut cases of sexual harassment.  No one knows why.

On NewsOneNow with Roland Martin on November 30, Clyburn was asked by he hasn’t called for Sen. Al Franken’s resignation after several women have come fourth accusing the Senator or inappropriately touching or grouping them.  His answer was to remind Martin that “that’s the Senate side” I’m on the House side.

A more stunning question is: Where are the numerous loud calls for the resignation of Rep. Blake Farenthold?

It was reported by Politico on December 1, that Rep. Blake Farenthold, a Republican from Texas, Rep. used taxpayer money to settle a sexual harassment claim brought by his Communications Director. Farenthold is a sitting member of Congress. The rumor no one has denied is that Farenthold’s sexual harassment suit cost taxpayers $84,000.  We saw a Pelosi press release on Conyers leaked settlement documents when the settlement totaled $27,000.  We also heard a loud demand for his resignation, endless loads of outrage during TV interviews and talk about “zero tolerance” from the Democratic leader.  None of that has been seen on the subject of Farenthold.

Farenthold’s former Communications Director Lauren Green left her job after she couldn’t withstand that behavior of her boss, years ago.  Farenthold isn’t denying what happened. But it appears to be the case that none of that has prompted a call for his resignation from the same people calling for Conyers to keave Congress.

Greene said another Farenthold aide told her the lawmaker said he had “sexual fantasies” and “wet dreams” about Greene. She also claimed that Farenthold “regularly drank to excess” and told her in February 2014 that he was “estranged from his wife and had not had sex with her in years.” — Politico, December 1, 2017

Greene sued her boss in December 2014 over allegations of gender discrimination and sexual harassment and creating a hostile work environment.  If “zero tolerance” on issues of sexual harassment means anything it should mean that a lawmaker who cost taxpayers $84,000 should have to resign.  The delays for those calls is a glaring double standard given the events of the last week.


Previous articleVerizon Bringing 5G to Market in 2018
Next article“Booed Up”: Conyers Attorney Questions Conyers Accuser
Lauren Victoria Burke
Lauren Victoria Burke is a writer, comms strategist and political analyst. She created Crewof42, a blog focused on African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke also writes for NBC BLK, The Root, NNPA and is the Managing Editor of Politic365. As part of a diverse career in politics and media, she has served as a congressional staffer for the U.S. Senate Democratic Policy Committee, Communications Director for U.S. Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) and Director of Communications for Justin Fairfax for Lt. Governor of Virginia. From 2014 to 2017, Ms. Burke appeared each Monday on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin on TVOne. Ms. Burke holds a B.A. in History from The American University. She was born and raised in New York. Email: Twitter: @LVBurke. IG: @laurenvburke. Periscope: @LVBurke