A fifth accuser has come forward to accuse Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) of touching her inappropriately. Army veteran Stephanie Kemplin claims that the embattled lawmaker fondled her breast in 2003 during a photo-op in Kuwait at the height of the Iraq War.
Kemplin told CNN that she was stationed in the Middle East when she met then-comedian Al Franken, who was taking part in a USO tour that saw him pay visits to multiple American bases throughout the region. She had watched Franken in “Saturday Night Live” while growing up and wanted to take a photo with him.
“When he put his arm around me, he groped my right breast,” she recalled. “He kept his hand all the way over on my breast. I’ve never had a man put their arm around me and then cup my breast. So he was holding my breast on the side.”
Franken allegedly left his hand in the offending position for anywhere from five to ten seconds, in which time Kemplin was able to turn her body in such a way that his hand could no longer reach her breast before the photo was taken.
“I remember clenching up and how you just feel yourself flushed,” she said. “And I remember thinking – is he going to move his hand? Was it just an accident? Was he going to move his hand? He never moved his hand.”
“It was long enough that he should have known if it was an accident,” Kemplin, who was 27 at the time, decided. “I’m very confident saying that.”
At one point during her interview with the outlet, Kemplin grew emotional about the picture, which she claims is an especially potent reminder of her run-in with Franken in light of the other accusers’ stories.
“I was in a war zone,” she sobbed. “You were on a USO tour – are you trying to boost the morale of the troops or are you trying to boost your own? I just feel so sorry for that young girl in the picture.”