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Roy Moore, Sen. Al Franken Photo: Brynn Anderson, Jacquelyn Martin / AP

Two Democratic lawmakers accused of sexual misconduct were pushed out of Congress this week, while Republican Trent Franks announced his resignation Thursday night after being advised to step down by House Speaker Paul Ryan. However, Republicans have yet to apply similar pressure in two of their most prominent cases of alleged misconduct: Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore and President Trump.

The bottom line: There's a clear difference in how each party is handling sexual misconduct. Republicans — especially if Roy Moore becomes a U.S. senator — will have to decide whether to impose the same standards on members of their own party. And of course, there's the irony Franken mentioned in his farewell speech — the Republican president was caught on tape boasting about sexual assault.

Democrats accused:
  • Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.): Stepped down from Congress Tuesday after being called to resign by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Rep. James Clyburn, among others.
  • Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.): Announced he will resign from the Senate on Thursday after more than 30 Democratic senators called for his resignation.
  • Rep. Ruben Kihuen (D-Nev.): Pelosi and other leading Democrats in the House have called for Kihuen to resign, but he told ABC News earlier this week that he won't.
Republicans accused:
  • Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas): Only one of his House GOP colleagues, Barbara Comstock, is calling on him to resign.
  • Senate candidate Roy Moore (R-Ala.): Senior Republicans initially called on him to step aside, though many softened their stances over time. Trump eventually gave Moore his full endorsement, and the RNC reinstated their financial support this week. (Sen. Cory Gardner, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, told the Weekly Standard today that the group will “never" endorse Moore.)
  • President Trump: No Republicans recently have called for him to resign over allegations of sexual misconduct, although Sen. Jeff Flake and Sen. Bob Corker have been far more critical of the president recently. After the Access Hollywood tape was released toward the end of the 2016 campaign, some condemned Trump's words, but few Republicans withdrew support for his campaign.
What they're saying:
  • White House press secretary Sarah Sanders: "We feel strongly the people of this country addressed [the allegations] when they elected Donald Trump as president."
  • RNC vs. DNC: On the same day, the DNC called for Franken to resign and the RNC reinitiated their financial support for Moore's campaign.
  • Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.): "I think it's not a good time for the U.S. Senate," he told Axios' Caitlin Owens. "Every time I turn around there's some new information. This is very different from last week and next week will be very different ... I don't think Roy Moore should be a member of the U.S. Senate, I've said that from the beginning."
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.): "We have a president who acknowledged on tape that he assaulted women. I would hope that he pays attention to what's going on and think about resigning."
  • Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa.): "The electorate took care of [President Trump]," he told Owens. "And I don't know enough about [Rep. Farenthold] to comment."
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska): "When you say there's different consequences in the two partes, I don't know that I concur," Murkowski told Owens, noting that Moore has not been elected yet, but refusing to speculate about what would be done if he was. "I don't think it is a party issue," she said. "I think that you when you have had a series of accusations that impacted a member's ability to represent their state it demands that action be taken," referring to Al Franken.
  • Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said that it is "entirely in the hands of Republicans at this point to decide whether or not they are going to take this issue seriously." He praised Flake for denouncing Moore. On Trump, Durbin said the president's reaction to the many allegations against him has been irresponsible ... He has a responsibility to address these issues more forthrightly and not to ignore them."
  • A spokesman for Ryan pointed to The Office of Congressional Ethics, saying the independent group "investigated this claim and voted unanimously to dismiss the complaint against the member. ... We clearly need to reform this entire system and process, and that is the purpose of the House Committee on Administration hearing this week." Ryan also reiterated his position that Moore should bow out of the race to reporters on Thursday.

This story has been updated with Rep. Trent Franks' resignation.

Go deeper

Off the Rails

Episode 4: Trump turns on Barr

Photo illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photos: Drew Angerer, Pool/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 4: Trump torches what is arguably the most consequential relationship in his Cabinet.

Attorney General Bill Barr stood behind a chair in the private dining room next to the Oval Office, looming over Donald Trump. The president sat at the head of the table. It was Dec. 1, nearly a month after the election, and Barr had some sharp advice to get off his chest. The president's theories about a stolen election, Barr told Trump, were "bullshit."

In photos: Protests outside fortified capitols draw only small groups

Armed members of the far-right extremist group the Boogaloo Bois near the Michigan Capitol Building in Lansing on Jan. 17. About 20 protesters showed up, AP notes. Photo: Seth Herald/AFP via Getty Images

Small groups of protesters gathered outside fortified statehouses across the U.S. over the weekend ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

The big picture: Some protests attracted armed members of far-right extremist groups but there were no reports of clashes, as had been feared. The National Guard and law enforcement outnumbered demonstrators, as security was heightened around the U.S. to avoid a repeat of the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots, per AP.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
8 hours ago - World

China's economy grows 6.5% in Q4 as country rebounds from coronavirus

A technician installs and checks service robots to be be used for food and medicine delivery in Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, China, on Sunday. Photo: Hu Xuejun/VCG via Getty Images

China's economy grew at a 6.5% pace in the final quarter of 2020, the national statistics bureau announced Monday local time, topping off a year in which it grew in three of four quarters and by 2.3% in total.

Why it matters: No other major economy managed positive growth in 2020. Although the COVID-19 pandemic was first detected in China, the country got the virus under control and became one of the main positive drivers of the global economy even as the rest of the world was largely under lockdown.