Clinton Confidant And Liberal Democratic Donor Condemns ‘Vigilantes’ Who Forced Out Al Franken

REUTERS/Brian Snyder

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief
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Susie Tompkins Buell is “ashamed” of how Democrats forced former Sen. Al Franken to resign “like vigilantes on the rampage.”

The close confidant of Hillary Clinton and DNC donor says she is reconsidering her financial support of Democratic candidates in the upcoming midterm elections because she believes Franken was unjustly brought down amidst the #MeToo frenzy.

Buell told Politico’s Women Rule podcast Tuesday that she was “very ashamed of the Democrats for letting that happen [to Franken]. I feel like it was so unfair. It seemed like the people that forced him out — it was like vigilantes on the rampage.”

“It just struck me as so wrong.”

The former senator from Minnesota resigned after a series of sexual misconduct allegations came down on him over a period of weeks. New York Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who enthusiastically endorses the #MeToo movement of encouraging women to talk openly about sexual harassment and assault, was the first Democratic legislator to demand Frank step aside last December. Soon thereafter, six more Democratic women in the Senate became a chorus calling for his resignation.

Buell says that escalation was unfortunate and unnecessary.

“I’m very sorry that it happened,” she told the podcast. “It reminds me of what’s happening in some of these situations with women taking men down. You’ve just to be more careful about things. You’ve got to take your time.”

Buell, who has established a personal fortune with the Esprit clothing line, has aligned herself with liberal women in politics and in the past has funded Gillibrand — but she isn’t sure that she will do so in future.
“This has been her issue, sexual harassment…and I respect her very much for that, but I felt at that moment she just went way too fast and she kind of dragged everyone along with her.” Buell is “waiting to see” whether she will send any money in Gillibrand’s direction.

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