Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) issued another apology Thursday after two more women came forward to accuse him of inappropriate touching.
“I’ve met tens of thousands of people and taken thousands of photographs, often in crowded and chaotic situations,” Franken wrote in a statement, according to the Star Tribune. “I’m a warm person; I hug people.”
On Tuesday, HuffPost reported that two women, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Franken had touched their rear ends in separate incidents.
One woman said she was posing for a photo with Franken at a Minnesota women’s event in 2007 when he groped her. The other woman told HuffPost that Franken cupped her buttocks at a 2008 Democratic fundraiser, then volunteered to accompany her to the bathroom.
Franken told HuffPost that he didn’t remember the campaign events, and that it was difficult to respond to anonymous accusers.
On Thursday, he expanded his response in a statement. The senator said he was working to regain the trust of his constituents in Minnesota, and apologized to the women he’d made to feel uncomfortable.
“I’ve learned from recent stories that in some of those encounters, I crossed a line for some women — and I know that any number is too many,” he said. “I feel terribly that I’ve made some women feel badly and for that I am so sorry, and I want to make sure that never happens again.”
The Star Tribune noted that Franken plans to speak to the press on Sunday.
Sexual harassment allegations against the Democratic senator first broke last week, when radio host Leeann Tweeden said Franken kissed and groped her without her consent during a 2006 USO tour. Days later, Lindsey Menz told CNN that Franken had groped her while they were posing for a photograph at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010.