So far, seven women have come forward with accounts of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner's sexual harassment. Allegations of the 70-year-old mayor's harassment include forcible kissing and groping, as well as explicit sexual comments — Filner, for example, allegedly asked his former communications director to "work without her panties on."
In response to recent calls for his resignation, Filner made a statement Friday, but not without some technical difficulties.
Breaking news indeed.
After the audio issues were fixed, Filner issued an apology and said his behavior was "inexcusable" — but did not heed the multiple calls to resign. Instead, he said he will enter two weeks of intensive therapy in August as an important first step to addressing his issues. "I must become a better person," he said.
Because two weeks of therapy should do it.
Until the remarks, his response to the allegations — which he has admitted are true, though he has not delved into specifics — has been to insist he is "a hugger, of both men and women" and to refuse to step down.
The San Diego County Democratic Party seemed okay with that plan until Thursday night, when four of the seven women Filner harassed came forward for the first time. The central committee voted 34 to 6 to ask him to resign Thursday, three weeks after he had admitted to harassment.
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz also called on Filner to resign Friday.
“I am personally offended by his actions and I firmly believe no employee should face a hostile environment or harassment at their place of employment,” Wasserman Schultz said in a statement. “There is no place for this type of conduct in the workplace and certainly not in our city halls and public offices.”
(Image via the Port of San Diego on Flickr)