LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Both leading candidates for Michigan’s 7th Congressional District have weighed in on the Michigan State University football coach suspension and investigation.
Both Curtis Hertel, Jr., the leading Democratic candidate; and Tom Barrett, the leading GOP candidate; say Tucker should go.
In a Tweet on Sunday, Barrett called for Tucker to “do the right thing and resign, rather than put the MSU community through more shame and embarrassment.”
Reports of sexual harassment by Michigan State University head football coach Mel Tucker are disturbing, and his own acknowledgement of his actions reveals an incredible lack of judgement, something he also acknowledges.— Tom Barrett (@tombarrettmi7) September 10, 2023
MSU is still healing from the horrific actions of Larry…
Hertel said in a statement to 6 News that Tucker “should never coach again.”
Barrett and Hertel are the likely opponents to replace Elissa Slotkin in the 7th Congressional District, which includes all of Ingham, Clinton, Shiawassee and Livingston counties and parts of Eaton and Oakland counties.
Tucker has been under investigation since December 2022 for sexual harassment. Former contractor to the university, and anti-rape, anti-sexual harassment educator Brenda Tracy alleged he masturbated during a telephone call with her. Tucker admitted to an investigator he had engaged in masturbation while talking to her, but claimed it was consensual phone sex activity. Tracy denies this was a consensual thing.
Both Barrett and Hertel served in the Michigan Senate together when the Nassar scandal was revealed. They both signed onto a bipartisan letter demanding MSU release documents regarding the Nassar scandal and the institution’s handling of it – something MSU continues to reject as recently as last week. Nassar survivors are now suing to get those documents released.
Hertel praised former MSU President Lou Anna Simon’s resignation. He also pushed for in-depth and ongoing investigations of what MSU officials knew and when they knew it during the Nassar scandal.
Slotkin is seeking the Democratic nod to replace retiring Sen. Debbie Stabenow in the Senate. Last week, former Congressman Mike Rogers announced he was seeking to become the Republican nominee for the seat.
Neither Rogers nor Slotkin has so far made a comment about the allegations against Tucker, or the university’s decision to suspend him without pay yesterday.