Politics California lawmakers to confront sexual misconduct scandal
Poll: Half of Minnesotans don’t think Franken should go through with resignation
Half of Minnesota voters surveyed in a recent poll don't think Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) should go through with his planned resignation. A new Public Policy Polling survey found 50 percent of voters in Minnesota don't think the Minnesota Democrat should resign in the face of multiple allegations of sexual misconduct.Forty-two percent of Minnesotans think Franken should resign.Among Democrats, 71 percent don't think Franken should resign.The poll also finds that 53 percent of voters approve of the job Franken is doing in office, compared to 42 percent who don't approve.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California lawmakers will grapple for the first time as a group with a growing sexual misconduct scandal when they return to Sacramento on Wednesday.
Leader of NYC Ballet retiring amid misconduct investigation
The longtime leader of the New York City Ballet is retiring in the midst of an investigation into accusations of sexual misconduct by him. Peter Martins wrote a letter to the company's board of directors on Monday announcing his retirement, saying the scandal had "exacted a painful toll on me and my family."The 71-year-old Martins told board members he continues to deny sexually harassing or abusing members of the company, including dancers. He said he had been the subject of news articles reporting largely anonymous and decades-old accusations.
The 2018 legislative year will bring debates over legislation to boost protections for victims and people who report sexual misconduct, as well as both chambers' continued efforts to improve their own policies for handling misconduct.
On the very first day back, the Senate must confront how to handle one of its members, Sen. Tony Mendoza, who has refused calls to step aside amid an investigation into his alleged inappropriate behavior toward young women who worked for him.
"This is certainly not something we thought we'd be working on," Democratic Sen. Connie Leyva of Chino said. "We're finally going to be able to get it right and make sure any injustices in the past we can correct and that moving forward, everyone who works in the Capitol can feel like they can come forward."
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Vice has suspended two top executives after a New York Times report on sexual misconduct at the digital media company. Vice Media has suspended its president, Andrew Creighton, and chief digital officer Mike Germano, as it investigates allegations against them, according to a company memo sent to employees Tuesday.The Times had reported in late December that it found four settlements involving allegations of sexual harassment or defamation against Vice employees, including Creighton.
That's not all that's on lawmakers' plates. Within a week of their return, Gov. Jerry Brown will submit his final budget proposal, kicking off six months of negotiating on how California should raise and spend money. Proposals that stalled last year on bail reform, single-payer health care and expanding renewable energy also will be back for debate.
Still, sexual misconduct will be a dominant theme. A letter circulated in mid-October by lobbyists, lawmakers, legislative staffers and other political consultants cited a pervasive culture of harassment in California's Capitol. Women eventually came forward with specific allegations that prompted Democratic Assemblymen Raul Bocanegra and Matt Dababneh, both of Los Angeles, to resign.
Mendoza, meanwhile, denies allegations against him and says an investigation will clear his name. But Republican Sen. Andy Vidak said he'll move to expel Mendoza when the Senate reconvenes, setting up a potentially fraught showdown on the Senate floor.
CBS News says it fired political director for inappropriate behavior
The network said it had investigated claims of "inappropriate behavior" by former political director Steve Chaggaris.Steve Chaggaris had served as CBS News' political director since March 2017 after being hired in 2012 as the Washington-based executive editor for CBSNews.com. He became senior political editor in 2014.
Legislatively, Republican Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez will bring forward for the fifth time a bill that would give whistleblower protections to legislative employees who report ethical violations, including sexual misconduct. The Senate has killed her bill four times.
Dozens of women have said they do not report misbehavior by lawmakers or legislative staff because they are afraid of losing their jobs or facing other professional repercussions. Several former Mendoza staffers have accused the Senate of firing them because they reported his overtures to a young woman who worked for him, something the Senate and Mendoza deny.
Melendez, of Lake Elsinore, has been tweeting the names of every lawmaker who has agreed to co-sponsor the measure as a means of ramping up pressure on the Senate. The bill has historically passed the Assembly with bipartisan support.
Leyva, meanwhile, will introduce a bill that would ban nondisclosure agreements in sexual harassment settlements, both in the public and private sectors, which can stop the parties from speaking publicly about what led to the settlement.
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"Good evening ladies and remaining gentlemen"Meyers alluded to the many men whose careers have been destroyed by revelations and accusations that they had harassed or abused Hollywood women.
"Eliminating these secret settlements, the no-disclosure agreements, then the accused, the person who is doing the harassing, they have nowhere to hide," Leyva said. "They have to stop their behavior."
Two other planned Assembly bills would extend the period in which people can report sexual harassment claims at the state's Department of Fair Employment and Housing and impose stricter rules for employers — including the Legislature — to track sexual harassment complaints. Democratic Assemblywoman Eloise Reyes of San Bernardino is backing both pieces of legislation.
Reyes sits on the Assembly subcommittee tasked with rewriting the Legislature's sexual harassment policies. She was sharply critical during a hearing last month on the Assembly's policy of not tracking sexual harassment complaints, only investigations. She wants to mandate better tracking by the Legislature and other employers.
"The only way that were going to know if there's a pattern is if we keep track of this," Reyes said.
Regarding the state budget, another top concern for lawmakers, the governor must submit his blueprint by Jan. 10. Lawmakers must send a final spending proposal to Brown, who is term-limited out of office, by mid-June.
The Assembly has already staked out budget priorities, including providing health care for people living in the state illegally and expanding a tax credit for the working poor. The Senate hasn't outlined its ideas.
Georgina Chapman to Receive $15-20 Million in Harvey Weinstein Divorce: Source .
Georgina Chapman isn’t walking away from her marriage with Harvey Weinstein empty-handed. The disgraced movie mogul will pay the fashion designer a divorce agreement worth roughly $15 to 20 million, a source tells PEOPLE. Chapman will also get primary custody of their two children, ages 7 and 4, but she and Weinstein are still working out the details of the division of their marital assets. While a settlement has been reached, Chapman, 41, and Weinstein, 65, have not filed in court. Page Six was the first to report news of the agreement. On Oct. 10, Chapman announced she was leaving Weinstein following allegations of sexual misconduct. In a statement to PEOPLE, she said, “My heart breaks for all the women who have suffered.” She has since met with divorce lawyers. “She doesn’t want to be married to Harvey,” a source previously told PEOPLE. “She wants a divorce. It’s just not anything that she is rushing.” Weinstein and Chapman married in 2007 and have two children together, ages 7 and 4. Weinstein also has three children from a previous marriage. The Oscar-winning producer has been accused of sexual misconduct by over 60 women since TheNew York Times and TheNew Yorker documented decades of alleged sexual misconduct and sexual assault involving a number of women in detailed articles in October. A spokesperson for Weinstein previously told PEOPLE in a statement that “any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein. Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances.
State Senate Changes Handling Of Sex Assault Allegations As Mendoza Faces New Claims Of Misconduct
New misconduct claims against a Los Angeles-area state senator come as a California State Senate committee announces new rules on how sexual assault allegations will be handled.
Rep. Speier: Sexual harassment continues on Capitol Hill because people get away with it
House members confronted the seriousness of sexual harassment on Capitol Hill at a hearing on Tuesday, as two congresswomen shared their perspectives on the problem's pervasiveness. Rep. Jackie...