Secretary of State Tom Schelder, currently facing sexual harassment allegations, speaks during a press conference, Wednesday, March 14, 2018, at his office in Baton Rouge, La.

Republican Senator John Kennedy has issued a renewed call for the resignation of Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler, after sexually suggestive emails and messages emerged Tuesday, directed toward a subordinate. 

Copies of unredacted emails obtained by The Advocate offer the first glimpse of Schedler's on-the-clock exchanges with Dawn Ross, a longtime employee who recently sued him for sexual harassment, claiming the secretary of state sent her love letters and then retaliated when she rebuffed his repeated advances.

Kennedy issued a statement Friday morning, citing the new revelations as cause for him to resign. 

“Secretary Schedler has claimed the truth about the sexual harassment allegations against him by his employee ‘can be found somewhere in the middle.’ The emails published today tell a different story. They show that he crossed the line and abused his position,” Kennedy said in the statement. “It saddens me to say this, but Tom needs to resign. There is no place in Louisiana for sexual harassment in the workplace.”

Schedler, 68, has claimed he had a "consensual sexual relationship" with Ross — an assertion the woman denies. He has refused to step down in the wake of the allegations but said last month he will not seek re-election to a third term in 2019.  

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