Assembly Democrats in Madison have removed a Green Bay legislator from some of his duties, and are calling for his resignation. A state investigation substantiated a sexual harassment claim made against state Representative Staush Gruszynski this week, according to Assembly Minority Leader Gordon Hintz.
Gruszynski ran unopposed and is in his first term. He’s also been on the Brown County Board of Supervisors for six years, representing a part of Green Bay’s east side.
Gruszynski issued a statement:
“In October I made a terrible mistake after drinking too much in a Madison Bar. That evening, I made inappropriate comments to a female staffer and a sexual harassment claim was filed. I fully cooperated with Human Resources throughout this process. I want to apologize directly to that staffer and everyone that was involved that evening. My conduct was unprofessional and completely unacceptable. I need to be responsible for my actions and following that night I’ve taken steps with my family, and more importantly myself, to rebuild what I’ve broken. Shortly after this incident, I sought out counseling for myself and my family, and I am actively working on my continued sobriety. My concern and focus at this time is my family, and how in the New Year I continue to move forward serving the constituents of the 90th district.”
The investigation into Gruszynski’s actions ended this week. As a result, Hintz says Gruszynsk has been stripped of his committee assignments, will no longer caucus with the Assembly Democrats, and should resign.
The head of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin is also asking Gruszynski to resign, saying the party has ‘zero tolerance for sexual harassment’ and ‘expects elected leaders to hold themselves to the same standard.’
It is unlikely this incident will have any impact on Gruszynski’s county board seat, according to a county official. His term ends in April and he’s already filed papers stating he doesn’t plan to run again.