The Iowa Senate’s Republican leaders have just released the internal review of sexual harassment allegations in the Senate GOP Caucus staff.
The report is dated August 15 (here’s a link to it). Senate GOP Leader Bill Dix had planned to keep the report secret, but Republican Governor Kim Reynolds and House Speaker Linda Upmeyer, also a Republican, publicly pushed him to release it.
Dix has been saying the review didn’t find new cases of harassment beyond those disclosed after the Senate GOP’s former communications director’s sued to protest the harassment she experienced through 2013. The report concludes there are no “provable” instances of sexual harassment in the past four and a half years. However, according to the report, staffers who were interviewed said “there is an environment on the senate floor with Senators making sexually suggestive comments or (talking about their) sexual preference.”
The report indicated most staffers interviewed declined to name names, fearing retaliation. Senator Dix sought legal advice about the public release of this report. The lawyer he hired said the names of senators cited in the report should not be made public, nor should staff be identified.
The report concludes both current and past anti-harassment training for senators and GOP staff “is ineffective” with some “confusion” about the concept of a “zero tolerance policy” when it comes to harassment. The Senate’s GOP leader said last week that it’s time for better training for his staff and his fellow senators.