Texas Dems to keep funds raised

The Dallas Morning News - - News - Gromer Jef­fers Jr.

Texas Democrats said Thurs­day that they won’t give back cam­paign money gen­er­ated from a fundraiser head­lined by dis­graced Sen. Al Franken.

Franken, D-minn., an­nounced Thurs­day he plans to re­sign af­ter sev­eral women came for­ward with ac­cu­sa­tions that he in­ap­pro­pri­ately groped or touched them. For weeks now, var­i­ous Demo­cratic groups and can­di­dates have been giving back money re­ceived from Franken or his po­lit­i­cal PAC.

But the Texas Demo­cratic Party has pointed out that the tens of thou­sands of dol­lars raised dur­ing the Septem­ber Franken fundraiser in Austin came from donors, not Franken him­self.

Franken had been pop­u­lar on the Demo­cratic Party fundrais­ing cir­cuit un­til the sex­ual mis­con­duct al­le­ga­tions arose. “No, we don’t in­tend to do so,” said Texas Demo­cratic Party Deputy Ex­ec­u­tive Direc­tor Manny Gar­cia, when asked whether the party would re­turn or do­nate to char­ity the money raised with the help of Franken. “All funds will be used to en­sure we do our best to en­sure that all Tex­ans have the chance to get ahead.”

Franken was the key­note speaker at a Sept. 23 event at the Bel­mont in down­town Austin. Over 200 at­tended that fundraiser, where tick­ets were priced from $25 to $1,000. The $1,000 ticket got an at­tendee into a VIP re­cep­tion and the chance to take a pic­ture with Franken.

Among other things, Franken has been ac­cused of grop­ing the back­sides of women dur­ing photo op­por­tu­ni­ties.

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