The movement, which began with accusations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, is becoming a movement responsible for the resignation or social ruin of long-time political figures like John Conyers and Al Franken.
So, some are left asking why as many people aren’t calling for Texas Congressman Blake Farenthold to join them.
A recent report by the New York Times revealed a climate of sexual harassment, innuendos and worse went on and even thrived in Farenthold’s office among staff.
The piece claims the environment is as bad as anything coming out in recent months against other politicians.
Yet, he’s still in office, and some say he seems to be under relatively little pressure to step down.
Farenthold isn’t totally out of headlines, settling a sexual harassment lawsuit with over $80,000 in taxpayer dollars, which eventually led to the House Ethics Committee reopening its investigation into his behavior.
According to the Times, the committee announced the formation of a subcommittee to look into the allegations from the original settled lawsuit last week.
Multiple aides are on record complaining of inappropriate behavior and remarks from Farenthold, including him telling one of the “sexual fantasies” he envisioned.
The aide alleging these claims says her higher ups fired her in retaliation when she complained.
“There were a lot of inappropriate things that happened in that office that I don’t think would have happened if the congressman hadn’t already set the tone,” former aide Elizabeth Peace said in an interview.
In another interivew, Kristin Nicholson, director of the Government Affairs Institute at Georgetown University with 20 years’ experience as a House aide, said offices in the Capitol tend to mirror the attitudes of their head lawmaker or chief of staff.
“I don’t think that’s the norm, but it’s certainly not unusual for staffers to be subjected to inappropriate comments or sexist remarks.” Nicholson said.
Farenthold continues to deny any wrongdoing, and a spokesperson for his office told the Times he underwent the requisite sexual harassment and sensitivity training after the accusations came out against him.
“I’ve done nothing wrong. I’m happy to visit with anybody who has a concern and explain the facts to the extent that I am allowed to under the settlement agreement,” Farenthold provided in an interview.