Los Angeles Times

Analysis: As corporate America fires alleged sexual harassers, Washington stumbles over how to punish its transgressors

WASHINGTON - American corporations in recent weeks have scythed through the ranks of alleged sexual harassers, dispatching personalities as powerful as movie producer Harvey Weinstein and television anchor Matt Lauer, who was swiftly fired on Wednesday after a credible accusation of sexual misbehavior.

But in Washington, the growing public intolerance for harassment has tied politicians in partisan pretzels, and left them grappling for a way to assess guilt and mete out consequences.

Several factors have slowed the political response.

In the sharply divided Capitol, partisanship inevitably affects how cases are viewed. So does a reluctance to sit in judgment of peers who are longtime friends and allies. Congress also has more than a whiff of entitlement,

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