Half of Minnesota voters think Sen. Al Franken should not resign from his post over sexual harassment allegations, a higher percentage than those who say he should follow through on his intentions to step down, according to a new survey.
Franken, a Democrat, plans to officially leave the Senate Jan. 2, following various allegations from women who say that he groped them or made other unwanted advances. Franken has denied the allegations but fellow Democrats urged him to resign.
That may not have been what his constituents preferred, according to the poll, released by the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling. Of those surveyed, 60 percent said they thought the Senate Ethics Committee should have completed its investigation before any decision was made, while 35 percent believe he should resign immediately. Among voters in Minnesota, 76 percent said they thought their voices should have been more important in determining Franken's fate in the Senate, while 12 percent said they thought it should have been handled by fellow senators in Washington.
Overall, half of voters said he should not resign and 42 percent said he should go through with his plans to resign.
Despite the allegations, the survey shows Franken remains popular in his home state, at 53 percent approval compared to 42 percent disapproval. According to Public Policy Polling, most senators do not score above the halfway mark in popularity in their states.
The popularity was driven by women. Fifty-seven percent of women polled said they liked the job he was doing, compared with 37 percent who don't.
Researchers interviewed 671 Minnesota voters on Dec. 26 and 27 to conduct the poll.