ST. PAUL - Another Minnesota lawmaker is facing allegations of sexual harassment. Rep. Erin May Quade has accused Rep. Tony Cornish of sexual harassment and an unnamed woman accused him of making unwanted sexual advances towards her.
House Speaker Kurt Daudt issued a statement Thursday night saying he was suspending Cornish from his position as chair of the Public Safety Committee and initiating the House complaint investigation process.
Cornish has denied the accusations.
Meantime, DFL candidate Lindsey Port and Rep. Quade are accusing Sen. Dan Schoen of sexual harassment.
Statement from House Speaker Kurt Daudt :
"The allegations of sexual harassment against Rep. Tony Cornish are extremely troubling. I have shared the reports with the House Director of Human Resources as prescribed by our Policy against Discrimination and Harassment. In addition, I spoke with Rep. Cornish and told him that his reported actions were inappropriate and unacceptable as a member of our caucus and the Legislature.
“After consulting with the House Republican Executive Committee, I am suspending his chairmanship and have instructed the House's non-partisan HR department to begin their complaint process."
On Friday the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault issued a statement in support of the alleged victims, praising the legislature for its announcement that sexual harassment policies will be reviewed at the capitol, but noted that a true solution is a much larger issue.
"The reports about Senator Schoen and Representative Cornish are just two examples. It should be no surprise to us if more come forward given the events of the past weeks," the statement reads. "Calling out misconduct, changing policies and raising awareness are all good responses, but sexual harassment will not end without a broader cultural shift. The burden should not be on victims to come forward every time to spark the change. Instead, the burden is on us, society as a whole, to call out harassment when we see it and to support victims who put so much on the line to come forward."
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