Colorado House votes to expel Rep. Steve Lebsock - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Colorado House votes to expel Rep. Steve Lebsock

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The Colorado House of Representatives has voted to expel Thornton Democratic Rep. Steve Lebsock following sexual harassment accusations from five women.

The final vote was 52-9 with 4 votes excused. A two-thirds majority was needed to expel Lebsock from the House. 

Gov. Hickenlooper released a statement following the vote, which read: 

“Today’s vote by Colorado’s House of Representatives was important and necessary to address well-documented instances of sexual harassment in the workplace. This has been a painful chapter and it is our sincere hope that we all learn from the bravery of the women who came forward.”

It was the first time a member of the Colorado House of Representatives has been expelled from office in 103 years.

Results of an independent investigation discovered 11 different allegations from five different women were credible.  On Friday, Lebsock asked for a formal investigation, saying that the previous review was flawed. He has continually denied the claims.

Lebsock said the independent investigator hired by House leaders was "of the lowest standard."

A Colorado lawmaker accused of sexual misconduct is asking his colleagues for a formal investigation, saying a previous outside review was flawed.

However, one of the women who accused Lebsock of harassment, Rep. Faith Winter, said the vote to expel Lebsock was about punishing an abuse of power, and not a vendetta.

However, house Republicans said earlier Friday they want to convene a bipartisan committee with subpoena powers to look into the allegations. They said the Legislature's investigative process is fraught with problems. 
They complain they're being asked to expel Lebsock on the basis of a redacted report by the investigator that was provided by Democratic leaders.

An Arizona state representative is the only state lawmaker to have been expelled over sexual misconduct allegations since the rise of the #MeToo movement. A California state senator resigned just moments before his colleagues sought to formally expel him.

(The Associated Press contributed to this story.)

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