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Katko says politicians accused of sexual harassment should resign

WRVO Public Media
WRVO News (file photo)
Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus)

Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) said members of Congress accused of sexual harassment allegations should resign. But Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is calling for investigations first.

Katko said he is outraged by the sexual allegations against congressional members. 

“Anyone who tries to rationalize it in any way, shape or form is ridiculous," Katko said. "I was a federal prosecutor for 20 years, our office routinely did child exploitation cases and all kinds of stuff. I prosecuted the mayor of Oswego who was trying to have sex with underage women. I put my money where my mouth is. There’s no way under God’s green earth we should ever stand for it.”

That mayor Katko prosecuted was former Oswego Mayor John Gosek, who pleaded guilty in 2006 to trying to arrange a sexual encounter with teenage girls. Gosek’s son is Oswego Councilor John Gosek Jr., who was recently accused of sexual harassment by a constituent.

Katko said he also had no idea that taxpayer money was being used in a settlement of sexual allegations against Michigan Democratic Rep. John Conyers.

“That should end," Katko said. "I’m going to do everything I can to make sure it does end.”

Credit Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News
Sen. Charles Schumer (right) talks with Syracuse Mayor-elect Ben Walsh.

On the Senate side, Schumer said he was one of the first to say Democratic Sen. Al Franken should be investigated by the ethics committee for sexual allegations. But last week, Schumer stopped short of saying Franken should resign.

“I think we should let the investigation go forward first,” Schumer said.

More women have accused Franken of sexual harassment since Schumer made the comments.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.