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Congresswoman Says Two Current Members of Congress Sexually Harassed Staffers

14 November 2017

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) said she knows of two current members of Congress who "have engaged in sexual harassment", while another congresswoman, Rep. He then exposed himself.

On Nov. 3, former GOP Rep. Mary Bono of California disclosed that she had been sexually harassed by a male colleague in Congress for years before confronting him. It's unclear whether either of the members is the same person mentioned by Comstock; neither Speier nor Comstock named them.

The lawmakers, Rep. Barbara Comstock and Rep. Jackie Speier, are advocating for reforming the House's sexual harassment policies.

She continued, "These harasser propositions such as, 'Are you going to be a good girl?' To perpetrators exposing their genitals, to victims having their private parts grabbed on the House floor".

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Comstock told the story involving the unidentified congressman at a hearing on preventing sexual harassment in Congress, saying she doesn't know who the member is but heard the story from a trustworthy source. "They want the system fixed and the perpetrators held accountable".

On Tuesday, the committee also heard from House administration officials regarding existing procedures to deal with sexual harassment on Capitol Hill.

"I have had numerous meetings with phone calls with staffers, both present and former, women and men who have been subjected to this inexcusable and often illegal behavior", she said. Then, she said, they are required to sign a non-disclosure agreement before moving on to mediation.

"But that kind of situation - what are we doing here for women right now who are dealing with somebody like that?" Comstock asked the panel, which included representatives from the Office of Compliance and the Office of House Employment Counsel, which deal with congressional sexual misconduct allegations.

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Speier shared her own experience of sexual harassment earlier this month in a video in which she described a chief of staff forcibly kissing her when she was a congressional staffer.

Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-Va.), a member on the committee, also said she had heard of a congressman who is now serving who had exposed himself to a young female staffer. Democratic Rep. Linda Sanchez and former Democratic Rep. Hilda Solis of California also disclosed that they had been sexually harassed by fellow lawmakers, AP reports.

The lawmakers spoke at a House Administration Committee hearing on sexual harassment on Capitol Hill, and about pending legislation to require training for all members and their staffs, and whether further actions are necessary to establish uniform policies.

"I think it's important we name names", Comstock said.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan have now called on him to drop out of the race, while the editorial board of the Alabama Media Group branded him "grossly unfit for office".

Congresswoman Says Two Current Members of Congress Sexually Harassed Staffers