Hitchhiker’s Guide to how the Santos expulsion will amplify pressure on Democrats to deal with men

accused of abuse

The expulsion of Colorado State Senator Randy Baumgardner from the legislature after an investigation found he had sexually harassed at least four female staff members is likely to amplify pressure on Democrats to take more decisive action against elected leaders who have been accused of abuse. This will be especially relevant in the current political climate, when sexual harassment and assault allegations have roiled the contemporary political landscape. To that end, it is important for Democrats to demonstrate that they take allegations of abuse and harassment seriously.


The party should do more than simply expelling an individual accused of abuse: they should also act to address related systemic issues. This may include introducing additional legislation to combat sexual harassment and assault, or conducting oversight hearings on related allegations. Doing so will both send a message of zero-tolerance on the issue and help to ensure that victims are afforded the justice and support they deserve. In essence, a strong response to Baumgardner’s expulsion should be a signal that Democrats are taking a no-nonsense approach to cases of alleged sexual harassment and assault in politics.

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