Sen. Elizabeth Warren was on the Stephen Colbert show Monday night. During this appearance, she was asked whether or not Al Franken should resign in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against him. Warren dodged the question and instead argued that real change isn’t going after famous harassers but going after the non-famous ones.
“So, look, I was just enormously disappointed about this,” Warren said. She continued, “I knew Sen. Franken long before he was Sen. Franken and his wife Franni. These allegations are serious, and women have a right to be heard and listened to on this.
“Al is going to be subjected to a hearing in the United States Senate, an investigation. We have had, for a long time now in the Senate, long before I got there, a bipartisan ethics committee that meets on a regular basis, and he’s going to go in and answer.”
In other words, Warren doesn’t think Franken should resign. She thinks he should go before the toothless ethics committee where he’ll likely be given a slap on the wrist. In order to disguise the fact that she wants to give Franken a pass, Warren then changed the subject.
“This is a moment in America, as I see it,” Warren said. She went on to say, “I’ll tell you how I think we’re gonna know whether or not it’s a moment when there’s real change.
“It’s going to be when there’s accountability for famous people but it’s more going to be when the shift manager decides that maybe giving the good shifts only to women who will play sex games back in the dressing room is not a good idea…”When the boss decides that telling those dirty jokes and talking about whose got great boobs and a killer ass is—better rethink his management strategy.
“When that sort of thing happens for women all across this country, then we’ll know there’s been real change.”
In other words, it really doesn’t matter whether the famous guy (Al Franken) is forced to step down. What matters is some imaginary shift manager out there in not-special, USA. So long as that guy learns his lesson, America wins!
Here’s a question: What happens when the imaginary shift manager watches the Stephen Colbert show on his imaginary TV and sees Elizabeth Warren saying Al Franken should be given a slap on the wrist for sticking his tongue down a woman’s throat? Is that how change happens? I’m thinking Shifty the shift-manager watches Warren changing the subject and decides the powerful are once again giving one another a pass (JFK, Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton) so why shouldn’t he get one too. Warren may be changing minds here but not in the way she thinks.
Put another way, if you want regular people to think you’re serious you need to take it very seriously with not-regular people like Sen. Franken. Warren didn’t do that last night. Instead, she pulled a Dunham, i.e. we must believe the victims, but I’m going to go easy on this guy I’ve known for years.
Earlier in the interview, Warren attacked the GOP tax cut bill. She got big applause for calling it a giveaway to billionaires. But most of what she said about the bill was just a rehash of a video she did just last week attacking it. Who did she have as her straight man in that clip? If you guessed her good pal Sen. Al Franken, come collect your winnings: