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Tennessee Republican kicked out of state House for sexually harassing 22 women

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A Tennessee lawmaker was expelled from the state’s House of Representatives on Tuesday following accusations of widespread sexual harassment, media reported.

Republican state Representative Jeremy Durham was ousted by a vote of 70-2, according to the Tennessean newspaper, which said this was the state’s first legislative expulsion since 1980.

Durham did not immediately respond to request for comment. The Tennessean reported that Durham said no formal complaint had been filed against him and that he has not been charged with a crime.

“I’m very pleased that the House made the decision it did today. This was good for the taxpayers of the state. It was good for the victims of the state,” the newspaper quoted House Speaker Beth Harwell as saying.

A spokeswoman for Harwell’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A report released by Tennessee’s attorney general in July accused Durham of inappropriate sexual conduct with 22 women over a four-year period. The report said Durham repeatedly made unwelcome sexual advances toward female legislative staff, interns and lobbyists.

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Durham declined to be interviewed by investigators, the report said. His lawyer, Bill Harbison, said at the time that the report was politically motivated and unfair.

Harbison could not be immediately reached for comment on Tuesday.

The chairman of Tennessee’s Republican Party, Ryan Haynes, said on Tuesday: “I am saddened that all of my former colleagues, both Republicans and Democrats, have been placed in this terrible position by the reprehensible misbehavior of one individual.”

(Reporting by Tim Ghianni in Nashville and Timothy Mclaughlin in Chicago; Writing by Timothy Mclaughlin; Editing by Matthew Lewis)

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New York Times admits they ‘downplayed’ the rape allegation against Trump

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On Monday, The New York Times issued a mea culpa for the nature of their coverage of the allegation by advice columnist E. Jean Carroll that President Donald Trump raped her in a department store in the 1990s.

"After an article last week reported the advice columnist E. Jean Carroll's rape allegations against President Trump, some readers accused The Times of downplaying the story," wrote staff editor Laura Takenaga. "Many have written to ask us why we didn't give the allegations more attention on our website and in print ... Some questioned whether the lack of prominence showed too much deference to the president's denials, or whether it even suggested misogyny or an unwillingness to believe a victim's account."

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2020 Election

Joe Sestak is the 24th Democratic candidate to enter the 2020 race

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Former Pennsylvania Representative and 3-star general in the US Navy, Joe Sestak, 67, has made history - as the 24th candidate to seek the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

The field is already saturated with candidates young, old, black, white, gay, straight, and every descriptor in between. Diversity - it's a thing - and we embrace it. But 24?

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LGBTQ pride ‘forces’ people to accept ‘a perverted and non-biblical view of sexuality’: West Virginia Republican

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West Virginia state Sen. Mike Azinger penned an angry op-ed for the Parkersburg News and Sentinel, scorning the idea of LGBTQ acceptance and warning that it is a massive plot to indoctrinate people against Christian values.

"Tolerance, in the face of the violation of the commandments of God, is no virtue at all," said Azinger, a manager of a contracting firm with a master's degree in pastoral theology. He ripped into the local newspaper for covering an LGBTQ pride event the previous Saturday, thundering that, "Sexual deviancy is going mainstream."

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