Chief of staff puts out job queries amid allegations against Ruben Kihuen

Sexual harassment continues to haunt the Hill
Sexual harassment continues to haunt the Hill


    Sexual harassment continues to haunt the Hill


Sexual harassment continues to haunt the Hill 05:26

Story highlights

  • Democratic leaders have called since last week for Rep. Rep. Ruben Kihuen to resign
  • A former staffer alleged in a BuzzFeed report that Kihuen inappropriately touched her

Washington (CNN)The chief of staff for Rep. Ruben Kihuen is searching for job opportunities for his staff following an allegation of sexual harassment against the Democratic congressman from Nevada, which has prompted calls for Kihuen's resignation.

Peter Koltak, Kihuen's chief of staff, sent an email to multiple offices on Capitol Hill with resumes for seven aides who work in Kihuen's Washington office. The email was obtained by CNN and verified with two offices that received it.
"I'm hoping to place them all here pretty quickly in other offices. If you have openings or you hear of any, I would appreciate your help making those connections. I'm happy to talk with anyone at any time about each person. I would highly recommend any of them," he wrote.
    CNN has reached out to Koltak for comment and he has not yet responded to request for comment.
    The email sheds light on the impact that such controversies have on staffers and fueled speculation that Kihuen may be thinking about stepping down. Multiple House Democratic sources, however, say they are unaware of any pending resignation by Kihuen.
    In a BuzzFeed News report that published on Friday, a former staffer alleged Kihuen inappropriately touched her and made advances on her during his 2016 congressional campaign. Since the report, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Ben Ray Luján, the head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, have both called for Kihuen to resign.
    Kihuen apologized in a statement Friday.
    "I sincerely apologize for anything that I may have said or done that made her feel uncomfortable," Kihuen said. "I take this matter seriously as it is not indicative of who I am. I was raised in a strong family that taught me to treat women with the utmost dignity and respect. I have spent my 15 years in public service fighting for women's equality, and I will continue to do so."
    Democratic leaders -- as well as House Speaker Paul Ryan, a Republican -- also called for the resignation of longtime Rep. John Conyers following multiple allegations of sexual harassment. He announced his retirement and said it took effect Tuesday.
    Asked whether Kihuen should step down, Democratic Rep. Jim Clyburn said "I don't know, that's up to him." The number three House Democrat acknowledged that the Nevada Democrat was facing allegations of misconduct and calls for step aside, so was Texas Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold, who said he plans to repay $84,000 in taxpayer money for a settlement reached through a former aide who accused him of improper conduct, but he didn't see the same move to force him out.
    "I'm a little bit interested in why the speaker of the House called for his resignation and has been radio silent on Blake Farenthold," Clyburn, a South Carolina Democrat and the assistant Democratic leader, told reporters Tuesday.
    "He's accused of the same thing as Conyers is accused of ... and the speaker has not said a word," Clyburn said, before asking, "What is the difference?"