UK defense minister quits over indiscretions
British defense minister Michael Fallon quit on Nov. 1 saying his conduct had fallen below the high standards demanded of his position, the first resignation in a sexual harassment scandal in parliament.
Prime Minister Theresa May, weakened after losing her parliamentary majority in a June election, loses a loyalist at a time when she is trying to break a deadlock in talks to leave the European Union. Fallon was described by sources in her ruling Conservative Party as a political “Rottweiler”.
His was the first high-profile resignation after a growing number of allegations of inappropriate behavior have been made against ministers and lawmakers, fueled by sex abuse allegations against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein.
Fallon apologized earlier this week for touching a radio presenter’s knee in 2002 - something the woman in question described on social media as “mildly amusing”.
In his letter of resignation to May, he said there had been many allegations about lawmakers in recent days, including “some about my previous conduct”.
“Many of these have been false but I accept that in the past I have fallen below the high standards that we require of the armed forces that I have the honor to represent,” he said.