It must be awful right now to be Al Franken. I saw his resignation announcement, and to me, he did not look well. But how must it feel? Two months ago, he looked like a leading candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2000. He was getting a lot of coverage for his grillings in Senate committee hearings. Now he must resign his seat.
And really, his misdeeds don't seem to warrant this. Unless I missed something, we are talking about grabbed bottoms and forced kisses. Boorish, creepy, and requiring an apology, but not more than that—no serious harm done.
Franken is trapped by circumstances. His party wants to make a big deal of the alleged sexual offenses of Roy Moore, during his current senate campaign in Alabama. They want to make a big deal of Trump's comments on videotape about grabbing and kissing women. They want to paint the Republicans as the party that wars on women. If they do not make a big deal out of Franken, they look hypocritical. So they turned on him.
Besides taking out Franken, the current wave of sex scandals probably takes out Joe Biden. He is too vulnerable to similar accusations of creepy behaviour. They take out Hillary Clinton, if she was not already taken out by Donna Brazile's revelations about her fixing the primaries in 2016. It would be hard to avoid Bill Clinton's history in a 2000 race, and her part in defending him.
This is not especially worrisome for the Democrats. They prefer a fresh face anyway; someone will emerge out of obscurity, just as Bernie Sanders did last time. Or, in their day, Howard Dean, Jimmy Carter, Eugene McCarthy, George McGovern, Gary Hart, and so on. Democrats prefer a dark horse.
But to a Canadian, it is shocking how Americans treat their prominent people. One day you are a god, the next day you are the devil. It seems inhumane.