Three women accuse Iowa governor candidate of sexual misconduct

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Nate Boulton, Democrat of Des Moines to resign his Senate seat following sexual harassment allegations from three women. The allegations reported in the Des Moines Register are a serious matter for Senator Boulton.

Boulton, a Des Moines attorney who was elected to his first term in the Iowa Senate in 2016, did not deny the accusations in a statement released shortly after the report was published.

Two other women told the Register he rubbed himself against them more than a decade ago.

"I again offer an apology to those whom I have harmed in any way", Boulton said. "Regardless of the difference in my memory or the context of the situation, it is not my place to disqualify what these women felt at the time or in hindsight".

"I think I owe it to those people who have supported me to have that vision tested at the ballot box", he said.

The third accuser was left nameless for fear of workplace retaliation but shared a similar experience Millage's over the same period of time.

After Boulton's suspension, five people remain in the crowded race for the Democratic nomination for governor.

Iowa Republicans also called for Boulton to quit the race and resign as a senator.

Early voting for governor began May 7, and 13,668 Iowans have cast their votes. The victor will take on incumbent Republican governor Kim Reynolds in a key test of whether this Republican-trending state (Donald Trump won Iowa by a shocking 9 percent in 2016) could move back to its recent status as a tightly contested battleground state.

The contest could be decided in a party convention if no candidate secures 35 percent of the vote next month. Standing up for those who have been marginalized, forgotten, or ignored is a core value of the Democratic Party, as such, we as a community have a special obligation to strongly condemn every incident of sexual harassment, particularly when it occurs within our own party.

Woodruff said he thought Boulton should leave the race in a letter to Iowa Starting Line, a left leaning political blog, but he says that he, as an optimist, still believes Nate is truly a good person.

Sexual misconduct has gained national prominence in the past year after the #MeToo movement highlighted alleged inappropriate behavior from powerful men in media, politics and other industries.

Democratic Senate Minority Leader Janet Petersen, who previously endorsed Boulton for governor, released a statement saying sexual harassment and misconduct should not be tolerated. The state later reached a $1.75 million settlement.

In March, GOP Majority Leader Bill Dix, R-Shell Rock, resigned from the Senate after he was captured on video kissing a female lobbyist in a Des Moines bar. The victor will face Republican Governor Kim Reynolds and a Libertarian candidate in November.

Several Democrats in high positions have responded to the allegations. After those details were made public, she announced an independent investigation into the agency.