District 36 Rep. Luke Simons is being asked to step down following an angry confrontation at the Capitol earlier this week, and revelations of accusations of harassment dating back to 2018.
In one account, a council employee described Simons’s behavior as “really creepy,” stating Simons talked about shopping for underwear and even gave her a shoulder massage.
In a statement released by House Majority Leader Chet Pollert, he says, “The actions of Representative Simons this week were wrong, and in investigating the incident, many more instances of troubling and inappropriate behavior was brought to our attention, sexual harassment in any form is unacceptable and accusing staff and fellow legislators of lying about harassment is inexcusable. Information provided to us by Legislative Council this week, as well as Representative Simons’ subsequent actions, show a pattern of behavior that we do not tolerate, and that violates our rules against workplace harassment,”
The press release continues:
“Assistant Leader Louser and I have always encouraged anyone with concerns about inappropriate behavior to come talk to us and to file a complaint if they so choose. While we have previously worked with various individuals to resolve issues with Representative Simons’ inappropriate behavior, it is clear further action must be taken. Therefore, as of today, we are calling on Representative Simons to resign from his seat. Should he refuse, the legislature will weigh all the information and options, including expulsion, and make a determination when we reconvene after crossover. We want to make clear that this behavior will not be accepted at the Legislature.
We will also be establishing a more formal reporting process between Leadership and Legislative Council that will increase awareness of instances involving legislators while also preserving victim confidentiality.”
This is a developing story.