California State Sen. Mendoza Resigns over Sexual Harassment Investigation

California State Sen. Tony Mendoza

California State Sen. Tony Mendoza resigned amid the increasing investigation into the sexual harassment allegations against him. His decision comes before a possible vote for his expulsion.

In a post on Facebook, Mendoza said, “It is with great pain that I resign today from the Senate. The secretive investigation, with no Due Process and Disparate Treatment, left me with no other choice…”

He is the third lawmaker in California who decided to resign because of sexual harassment allegations. Mendoza denied the accusations against him. However, he apologized if his actions made anyone uncomfortable.

In his letter to his fellow lawmakers, Mendoza called the investigation against him “farcical.” According to him, he does not want to participate any further in the inquiry that ignores the Senate rules, due processes, and constitutional rights to self-defense.

Additionally, Mendoza claimed that the investigation is just “all for the purpose of playing to election year politicking.”

Furthermore, Mendoza emphasized that Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de Leon will not stop until his head is on a platter. According to him, the Senate leader wants to prove his sincerity to the MeToo movement that he supports its cause.

Mendoza intends to sue California Senate

Mendoza argued that de Leon secretly ordered the investigation against him without any due process. He did not receive any information about the specific charges. He did not have access to witnesses, evidence, or any opportunity to defend himself.

Moreover, he noted that report regarding the results of the investigation used the “lowest standard of proof—more likely than not—but asking for the highest penalty, expulsion.”

Mendoza concluded his letter by expressing his intention to file a lawsuit against the California Senate. He argued that it violated his constitutional rights because he was treated differently compared with others facing more serious allegations.  He believed the state Senate also violated the constitutional rights of voters in his district because they are left without representation.

On Wednesday, de Leon introduced a resolution to expel Mendoza from the Senate. A formal vote on the matter is expected Thursday.

On Tuesday, the report from outside investigators indicated that Mendoza “more likely than not” engaged in “unwanted flirtatious or sexually suggestive behavior” with the women.