The national wave of sexual misconduct and harassment accusations cost the Marcus JCC its biggest Book Festival event ever when a Los Angeles radio host accused Sen. Al Franken of improprieties during a USO tour in 2006.
Franken, a Minnesota Democrat, was a radio talk-show host and comic two years away from his first political campaign when he forcibly kissed and groped Leeann Tweeden, she said Thursday, Nov. 16. She released a photo that appears to show Franken fondling her in her sleep.
Franken acknowledged improper actions and apologized to Tweeden. Within hours of the news breaking, he canceled his appearance at the Atlanta JCC for the Book Festival’s closing night Monday, Nov. 20.
That talk, in support of Franken’s “Giant of the Senate,” sold out more than a month in advance. Over 1,400 people were expected to attend, making it the Book Festival’s biggest event.
The JCC has not said how or whether ticketholders will be compensated.
On the day Franken had been scheduled to appear at the JCC, a second woman, Lindsay Menz of Texas, accused Franken of grabbing her buttocks at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010, while he was in office.