A week after Minnesota Senator Al Franken was accused of groping and kissing Leeann Tweeden, a second woman, 33-year-old Lindsay Menz, is accusing Sen. Franken of grabbing her buttocks while the two posed for a picture.
According to the mother-of-three who now resides in Frisco, Texas, Senator Franken groped her during a photo op at the 2010 Minnesota State Fair.
Speaking to CNN, Menz alleges that “pulled me [Lindsay] in really close, like awkward close, and as my husband took the picture, he put his hand full-fledged on my rear.” Lindsay’s husband Jeremy, who took the picture, corroborates the story, saying that Franken “reached around her and kind of pulled her into him,”
“He pulled her in and pushed his head against her head. It was over pretty quick,” Jeremy Menez said.
Menz said she wanted to share the “uncomfortable” interaction that left her feeling “gross” because “if someone sees that I said something, maybe it would give them the courage to say something too.”
According to Menz, she attended the Minnesota State Fair with her husband and father in the summer of 2010, almost two years after Franken was elected to the Senate. Her father’s small business was sponsoring a local radio booth, and she spent the day meeting various elected officials, political candidates and celebrities and taking photos with them as they stopped by the booth.
When Franken walked in, Menz and her husband, who also spoke with CNN, said they recognized him right away. Menz said she had a brief and cordial exchange with the senator.
Then, as her husband held up her phone and got ready to snap a photo of the two of them, Franken “pulled me in really close, like awkward close, and as my husband took the picture, he put his hand full-fledged on my rear,” Menz said. “It was wrapped tightly around my butt cheek.”
“It wasn’t around my waist. It wasn’t around my hip or side. It was definitely on my butt,” she said, recalling that the brazen act lasted three or four seconds. “I was like, oh my God, what’s happening.”
Menz’s father, Mark Brown, told CNN that while he did not witness the moment, he said Lindsay told him about the incident right away. Menz’s mother, Jodi Brown, also told CNN that the two discussed the incident immediately after it happened. Jodi Brown said she distinctly recalls her son-in-law saying to her: “Our senator just groped my wife right in front of me.”
In a statement to CNN Sunday, Franken said he did not remember taking the photo with Menz and that he felt “badly” that she felt disrespected.
“I take thousands of photos at the state fair surrounded by hundreds of people, and I certainly don’t remember taking this picture,” Franken told CNN. “I feel badly that Ms. Menz came away from our interaction feeling disrespected.”
Menz’s allegations against Senator Franken, a junior United States Senator from Minnesota, come just says after Leeann Tweeden, a 44-year-old radio host and former model, accused Franken of kissing and groping her during a 2006 USO tour.