Rep. Blake Farenthold representing Texas in the halls of Congress. A former staffer in the congressional office of Representative Blake Farenthold filed suit against his office alleging she was illegally fired after complaining about sexual harassment.
Farenthold settled the sexual harassment claim brought by a former staffer with $84,000 in taxpayer funds, according to a Politico report published Friday.
In her complaint, Farenthold’s former staffer alleges:
“[Farenthold’s exeuctive assistant] informed Plaintiff that Farenthold had admitted to being attracted to Plaintiff and to having “sexual fantasies” and “wet dreams” about Plaintiff… Farenthold regularly made comments designed to gauge whether Plaintiff was interested in a sexual relationship. For example, in addition to the comments specifically mentioned, above, Farenthold would compliment Plaintiff’s appearance, or comment on her wardrobe, and then joke that he hoped his compliments did not constitute sexual harassment.”
Lauren Greene, the Texas Republican’s former communications director, sued her boss in December 2014 over allegations of gender discrimination, sexual harassment and creating a hostile work environment.
When she complained about comments Farenthold and a male staffer made to her, Greene said the congressman improperly fired her. She filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia, but the case was later dropped after both parties reached a private settlement.
Farenthold’s settlement is a small part of a much larger well of money used to settle workplace issues stemming from the U.S. House. On Capitol Hill, more than $17 million in taxpayer funds has been spent since 1997 to settle all kinds of workplace disputes — among them sexual harassment.
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