WASHINGTON — In the aftermath of Kathy Griffin’s photo scandal, Minnesota Sen. Al Franken has told CNN that he will continue with an appearance he has scheduled with Griffin in July.
As reported by Alpha News, Republican Party of Minnesota Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan called on Franken to cancel his scheduled event with Griffin on July 7, in Beverly Hills, California.
“The Republican Party of Minnesota calls on Senator Al Franken to cancel the event with Kathy Griffin due to this crass and disrespectful act of perceived violence,” MNGOP Chair Jennifer Carnahan said in a press release. “Surely, Senator Franken values the physical well-being of our democratically-elected President over promoting his book. While we value political discourse and the freedom to express your opinion, this act of perceived violence against the elected leader of the United States of America is disgraceful and disgusting.”
Photos of Griffin holding a severed head depicted as President Donald Trump surfaced via TMZ Tuesday. Griffin, who initially tried to play the photos off as a joke, later posted a video apologizing to fans.
“I’m a comic,” Griffin stated. “I went way too far. The image is too disturbing. I understand how it offends people. It wasn’t funny. I get it.”
I am sorry. I went too far. I was wrong. pic.twitter.com/LBKvqf9xFB
— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin) May 30, 2017
On Wednesday morning, Franken made the rounds to the morning show, where he was inevitably asked about the Griffin controversy.
Franken confirmed to CNN Wednesday morning that he plans to appear with Griffin in part to promote his latest book, Giant of the Senate.
“Kathy’s [Griffin] a friend and she’s a terrific comedian, but this has no business being in our public discourse,” Franken told Alisyn Camerota on CNN’s “New Day.”
“It’s disappointing that Senator Franken is choosing to continue with this event given the offensive nature of Ms. Griffin’s post,” Carnahan told Alpha News.
Franken also spoke with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell, telling her about his personal conversation with Griffin. “I said that we can’t be showing images of a president who has been decapitated,” Franken said. “I don’t even know what to say it was…This was just so wrongheaded and I told her it was.”
“I am disgusted by Kathy Griffin’s recent actions making light of the death and beheading of President Trump. Celebrities have a platform and power, whether they want it or not, and these beyond distasteful photos from Kathy Griffin unfortunately could lead other Americans to think these thoughts, or acting on these thoughts, are okay. Which they are obviously not,” Rep. Tom Emmer told Alpha News. “Over the years, there have been countless beheadings, including those of Americans, at the hands of terror groups like ISIS and to make light of this very real atrocity is absolutely reprehensible.”
CNN confirmed late Wednesday afternoon that they had terminated Griffin’s contract with their news agency.
Alpha News reached out to Franken’s office for comment. They did not respond in time for publication.