Redacted report involving state lawmaker creating controversy released ahead of expulsion vote

DENVER -- A redacted report regarding 11 allegations of sexual harassment by Democratic State Rep. Steve Lebsock toward five women was released Wednesday.

The report was made available by the  women alleging wrongdoing.

RELATED: Redacted report

While many of the comments in the report are graphic, some of the statements involve Lebsock allegedly saying  “If you came with me right now I can make you happy” and “Don’t you need a F*** buddy? I need a F*** buddy.”

Lebsock is facing an expulsion vote on Friday morning. However, the redacted report is creating controversy for lawmakers.

“I think it’s unfair for our members to even make a decision based on the redacted report because you can’t logically understand it,” said Rep. Patrick Neville, the Republican leader in the House.

“Without having a thorough thoughtful process, I can’t support that at this time."

Neville’s comments are significant because in order to expel Lebsock, Democrats need 44 votes. That means Democrats and Republicans will have together if the expulsion is going to happen.

Many Democrats brushed off the criticism, including Rep. Faith Winter, a lawmaker alleging wrongdoing by Lebsock.

“How much do they want victims to go through in order to seek justice,” Winter said.

Winter also said if leadership released an unredacted version, they would be violating current rules.

“That confidentially is designed to protect the survivors,” Winter said.

On Wednesday, the Democratic majority leadership introduced a measure to expel Lebsock from the House body.

It is the first time an expulsion hearing will take place in the Colorado State Capitol since 1915.

Lebsock is accused of sexually harassing a fellow legislator and four other women. He denies the allegations.

Holly Tarry, a former lobbyist who now runs a consulting firm, Winter, and Cassie Tanner, a former legislative aide have filed formal complaints against Lebsock.

Winter alleges Lebsock acted aggressively toward her when she turned down his sexual advances during an end-of-session party in 2016.

She said he grabbed her elbow and that she felt threatened.

Lebsock insisted Tuesday that his party was lining up behind Winter in her bid to win a state Senate seat in November that could challenge the narrow Republican majority in that chamber.

"The last thing I was thinking of when I came forward was politics," Winter said. "My whole goal in coming forward was to make sure this behavior stopped and that women in this building felt safe and felt like their voices were heard."

House Majority Leader K.C. Becker introduced an expulsion resolution late Tuesday, saying an outside investigator had judged 11 harassment allegations against Lebsock to be credible.

Becker called the claims "serious and egregious in nature."

Complaints and investigations into alleged misconduct are considered confidential under the Colorado Legislature's workplace harassment policy.

Debate on the measure was scheduled for Friday.

Lebsock, a Democrat, is running for state treasurer and said he will fight expulsion.

"I'm willing to speak with any of my colleagues," Lebsock said, referring to a 28-page defense he presented to lawmakers about his conduct before the legislative session began in January. "I don't think I'll be expelled."

Colorado House lawmakers from both parties will caucus Thursday to consider the case before taking up the expulsion resolution.

A two-thirds vote of the 65-member chamber is needed. Democrats hold 37 seats, including Lebsock's.