Democratic candidate for governor Nate Boulton accused of sexual misconduct

Nate Boulton, Democratic candidate for governor.

A Democrat running for governor has been accused of sexual misconduct just two weeks before the June 5 primary.

Three women told the Des Moines Register that Nate Boulton made inappropriate sexual contact with them, dating back to his days in law school at Drake in 2002, with the latest accusation taking place in 2015.

Boulton didn't deny the accusations, but said he had a different memory of the events and how they were described.

“I want to clearly and unmistakably apologize to the women who have come forward,” said Boulton in a released statement. “Regardless of the difference in my memory or the context of the situation, it is not my place to disqualify what these women felt at the time or in hindsight. While this is an embarrassing conversation for me to have today, I think it is important we have it, and I hope young men can learn about gauging conduct in social settings and continue to learn about and engage in the discussion.”

His campaign made a point to differentiate that these accusations took place in a social setting, and not in a workplace scenario.

A recent poll conducted by the Des Moines Register/Mediacom showed Bouton in second place in the Democratic gubernatorial primary, 11 points behind Fred Hubbell.

Boulton's rivals for the Democratic nomination for Governor are now responding to the news.

Fred Hubbell's campaign released a brief statement saying:

"Fred has been very clear that sexual harassment and misconduct has no place in our society and will not be tolerated."

Cathy Glasson released a stronger rebuke saying:

"These reports of sexual misconduct about Senator Boulton in the Des Moines Register today are extremely disturbing. We need a Governor we can trust to stand up and fight for fair treatment for Iowa women. Nate Boulton’s behavior disqualifies him from leading our state government."

Dr. Andy McGuire also called on Boulton to drop out:

John Norris tweeted his praise for the women who came forward:

Ross Wilburn also weighed in saying:

"Sexual or other forms of harassment are unacceptable. While I am learning about these allegations through the media, I have spent my career creating workplace environments that are safe, where all people are educated about proper conduct and where victims feel comfortable coming forward to report. Iowans believe in treating each other respectfully. We need to especially ensure that respectful behavior occurs in the halls of government."
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