Manchin appeared on CNN’s “New Day” on Monday morning to discuss the recent ethics investigation into the sexual misconduct allegations against Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.). During the conversation, Manchin also commented on the numerous accusations of sexual misconduct against Trump.
When asked if he believes Trump should be investigated, Manchin said he’s “moved on.”
“You know I’m not going to make that determination because he went through an election process with all of this in the open,” he told CNN. “If people feel that to be done, I think we have other things to be done too. I think women ought to have a right to come forward, they feel very strong about this. They should be protected, they can’t be retaliated on.”
Trump has been publicly accused of sexual misconduct, ranging from harassment to assault and rape, by 21 women. Manchin is up for re-election next year in West Virginia, a predominantly Republican state.
Alabama’s Democratic Sen.-elect Doug Jones shared a similar sentiment on Sunday, telling CNN that people “need to move on” from the allegations against Trump.
“People had an opportunity to judge before that election,” Jones said. “I think we need to move on and not get distracted by those issues. I don’t think the president ought to resign at this point. We’ll see how things go.”
Sens. Cory Booker (N.J.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.) are two of many Democratic lawmakers who have called on the president to resign over the sexual misconduct accusations. More than 100 Democrats in the U.S. House recently signed a letter urging Congress to open an investigation into the accusations. Last week, four of Trump’s accusers held a press conference to call on Congress to investigate their claims.
Manchin told CNN that he believes there should be an ethics investigation into Franken’s alleged behavior but he does not believe the senator should follow through with his resignation. Franken announced Dec. 7 that he would step down from his Senate seat in “coming weeks.”
“The political rancoring here is just unbelievable to me,” Manchin said. “How you can destroy a human being’s life and his family and everything that they stand for without giving them another chance? ... I definitely think he should not resign.”