Lawmakers face calls for resignation; others accused of misconduct see swift repercussions
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - Congressman John Conyers was admitted to the hospital Thursday and is reportedly resting comfortably after a firestorm of bad press following accusations of sexual misconduct.
Meanwhile, a fifth woman accused Sen. Al Franken, D- Minn. of inappropriate behavior.
Both, so far, have kept their jobs and avoided any punishment.
But as those allegations add up, some wonder if politicians see a double standard.
Whether in media or the movies, accusations of misconduct more times than not have meant swift repercussions - from firing to cancelled contracts.
So far, the same hasn't been said about Capitol Hill.
Two prominent politicians - Rep. John Conyers, D., Mich. and Sen. Al Franken, D, Minn. - both face allegations in the #MeToo movement.
While some colleagues have appeared defensive when asked about the different standards, ten days after the Conyers accusations broke saw a change in course.
"Congressman Conyers should resign," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D -Calif., stated.
“If the facts are indeed what they appear to be, I think it’s very clear that it’ll be very difficult for him to continue to represent the people in his district," Sen. Gary Peters, D- Mich., concurred.
Are politicians held to different more lenient standards? And is it voters who really have the final say in doling out punishment?
“We need to be looking strongly in the mirror but congress should not be exempting itself from any of the rules, any of the laws. Total transparency should be the rule here," Rep. Steve Pearce, R, N.M. said.
“Look, don’t do anything that your mother if she saw you doing it or heard you saying it would disapprove. I think that’s a simple rule and why some of these folks can’t follow that is beyond me," explained Rep. John Faso, R, N.Y.
Some have made decisions in light of the shining spotlight: Republican Congressman Joe Barton, Texas, announced Thursday he wouldn't be seeking reelection after admitting to sending racy texts to women while still married.