Opinion The Democrats cannot ignore their Harvey Weinstein problem

20:41  11 october  2017
20:41  11 october  2017 Source:   The Week

Harvey Weinstein Lawyers Up for Bombshell New York Times, New Yorker Stories

  Harvey Weinstein Lawyers Up for Bombshell New York Times, New Yorker Stories Harvey Weinstein has hired a high-powered team of attorneys to push back on soon-to-be-published bombshell stories from the New York Times and the New Yorker detailing sexual allegations and improper workplace behavior against him. Some women making the charges are believed to be on the record. Weinstein, the indie mogul and founder of the Weinstein Company, has retained star litigator David Boies, as well as attorneys Lisa Bloom and Charles Harder in an effort to rebut the claims.

For more than 25 years, Harvey Weinstein was a prolific fundraiser for the Democratic Party leadership. Weinstein backed Democrats with significant national profiles, who rushed to embrace his wealth and star power.

The late night shows, dedicated to their special brand of Trump Derangement Syndrome, went dark on Weinstein ’s sexual predation. Over at the progressive outlet the Daily Beast, in an article entitled “Yes, Hillary—and the Democrats —Do Have a Harvey Weinstein Problem ,” they determine that

Hillary Clinton and Harvey Weinstein attend the Time 100 Gala in 2012.© Larry Busacca/Getty Images for TIME Hillary Clinton and Harvey Weinstein attend the Time 100 Gala in 2012. Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

For more than 25 years, Harvey Weinstein was a prolific fundraiser for the Democratic Party leadership. When the time came for that leadership to respond to a flurry of allegations of sexual assault and harassment by Weinstein, it became apparent that either Weinstein had invested poorly — or all too well.

The New York Times ran its first exposé on the disgraced Hollywood mogul at the end of a $2.2 million run of personal and bundled political donations, which made Weinstein a very familiar and popular figure among Democrats. Weinstein backed Democrats with significant national profiles, who rushed to embrace his wealth and star power. He put his mark on the DNC with over $300,000 in donations over a quarter-century, hoping to shape the party's leadership. Weinstein put a special emphasis on the Senate, providing over $193,000 in funds to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Former Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) benefited most, with over $36,000 in overall donations, but Weinstein also gave more than $25,000 each to the two current senators from New York: Democrats Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.

Which politicians accepted donations from Harvey Weinstein?

  Which politicians accepted donations from Harvey Weinstein? The Hollywood producer is accused of sexually harassing women for decades.Weinstein, who is taking a leave of absence from his company after an explosive New York Times story Thursday detailed stories of women accusing him of sexual harassment, quickly became a lightning rod for politicians. By the end of Friday, most Democrats who received contributions from him had pledged to donate funds to charity. Weinstein has donated virtually exclusively to Democrats, according to Federal Elections Commission (FEC) records compiled by CQ Roll Call's Political MoneyLine site and reviewed by CBS News.

You can name the names — Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, you name it — and these people cannot hold a candle to Harvey Weinstein , and you look at the efforts to destroy them compared to the Democrat Party’s overwhelming (and Hollywood’s overwhelming) talent of ignoring Harvey Weinstein and

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Weinstein paid even more special attention to the very top. He donated to both Bill and Hillary Clinton repeatedly during the Clinton presidency, helping to launch the first lady's political career in her first run for office. He maxed out to Hillary's 2006 Senate re-election campaign and put $5,000 into her HILLPAC, and then maxed out again during her run for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination. By the end of the 2016 cycle, Weinstein had donated more than $26,000 to Hillary Clinton, and put another $15,000 total into HILLPAC over 17 years of her political career.

Weinstein also strongly backed Barack Obama's re-election campaign, helping to rally Hollywood again to Obama's side in 2012. Obama eventually gained over $45,000 from Weinstein.

Harvey Weinstein Forced Out of His Own Company

  Harvey Weinstein Forced Out of His Own Company Harvey Weinstein has been forced out of the independent film company he co-founded and catapulted to Oscar glory, felled by a mushrooming sexual harassment scandal that has hobbled his status as a media mogul and left his future in Hollywood in jeopardy. The Weinstein Company’s board of directors has voted to remove Weinstein from the studio, leaving control of the company in the hands of Weinstein’s brother, Bob Weinstein, and chief operating officer David Glasser, it was announced in a statement from the company Sunday.

Returning his cash doesn’t solve Democrats ’ Harvey Weinstein problem . Reuters via Washington Post. Chuck Schumer, Cory Booker (NJ) and Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) rapidly followed in re-gifting their Weinstein largesse to women’s charities.

Not everyone who has a problem with the Democratic Party is right wing, though I'm very familiar with the way Democrats "try to paint" their critics as right wing. Let's just put it this way; Harvey Weinstein is not the right wing's problem .

These facts are inescapable. Weinstein was a very real part of the political life of the two families most identified with Democratic Party leadership. The Clintons held social events and fundraisers with the Hollywood executive for years; one bash in June 2016 raised more than $1.8 million for her presidential run. The Obamas sent their daughter Malia to intern for Weinstein's company last year.

Weinstein had indisputably ingratiated himself into the highest levels of Democratic power.

Perhaps that's why, when it all came crashing down, the two most prominent leaders of the Democratic Party over the last decade froze like deer in the headlights.

Obama has mostly retired from day-to-day politics, but still keeps active on issues close to his heart. He has occasionally broken the protocol followed by most former presidents of refraining from criticism of a successor by publicly rebuking President Trump. Obama defended his Affordable Care Act when Trump pushed for its repeal, and he specifically scolded Trump for his plan to phase out the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program that Obama started under executive order.

Here's how much the Clintons and Obama received from Harvey Weinstein

  Here's how much the Clintons and Obama received from Harvey Weinstein Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein has given the three biggest names in Democratic politics more than $75,000 directly since the mid-1990s. Weinstein contributed $3,000 to former President Bill Clinton's reelection campaignHollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein has given the three biggest names in Democratic politics more than $75,000 directly since the mid-1990s.

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However, Democratic donor and Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein has been caught sexually harassing a large number of women and Democrats don’t Everyone believes that sexual harassment is a problem . “SNL” Creator Is Asked Why They Are Ignoring Harvey Weinstein Scandal, His

And yet, when the news broke about Weinstein, Obama suddenly couldn't be found. For five days, the former president offered no response to the scandal. By Tuesday, media outlets such as CNN began making his silence a story in itself, with Dana Bash asking on the air, "Where are the Obamas?" Obama subsequently issued a statement that "Michelle and I have been disgusted by the recent reports about Harvey Weinstein," without ever noting his own relationship to his bundler and Hollywood liaison.

Clinton's response was even worse. While Obama has mainly retired from public appearances, the 2016 runner-up has been hitting the speaking and media circuit for her campaign memoir, What Happened. She has been far more vocal and involved in politics than Obama, routinely attacking Trump on policy and performance.

And yet, for five days, Hillary went AWOL on a scandal that clearly relates to her claim in What Happened that endemic misogyny and sexism cost her the election. On Monday, despite four days to prepare to speak about the Weinstein scandal and 90 minutes of time on stage, Clinton talked to UC Davis students about Trump, global warming, and the NFL protests — without ever mentioning Weinstein. Finally, on Tuesday, she managed to beat Obama to the punch by issuing her own statement through a spokesperson expressing her status as "shocked and appalled."

Weinstein ties to Clinton, Obama run deep

  Weinstein ties to Clinton, Obama run deep As Democratic lawmakers begin to distance themselves from disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, the break-up might be a bit tougher for the Clintons and Obamas – whose ties to the mega-producer and Democratic donor run deep. Hillary Clinton, after facing mounting pressure to speak out, broke her silence on the allegations Tuesday. Five days after the Weinstein accusations emerged, Clinton released a statement saying she was "shocked and appalled."A deep and tangled history with Weinstein could help explain the delay.

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Activists want Democrats to return Weinstein donations. Yet the entire Democratic Party still has a big Harvey Weinstein problem : By many accounts, his behavior was an open secret long before it was exposed by The New York Times. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email.

And … that's it. No mention of donations, previous relationships, or any explanation as to how they missed Weinstein's behavior over a number of years. It took the two most dominant Democrats of the past 17 years five days to cook up responses that could have been written in 10 minutes after the first New York Times bombshell appeared.

It's a demonstration of stunning political incompetence. More than that, it's a failure of leadership from the two top leaders in which the Democratic Party invested itself over the last generation. It appears that both Obama and Clinton hoped to skate past a moment of outrage without alienating a formerly powerful Hollywood ally, which demonstrates just how beholden the entire party has become to the entertainment industry for their cash and star power.

That is a big problem for the Democratic Party. If this scandal expands past Weinstein — and there are already suggestions it might — then the next generation of leadership may have to figure out how to compete without the baggage Hollywood carries. Given the party's competitive collapse over the last eight years, it's a crisis that requires more alacrity and skill than either Clinton or Obama showed over the last week.

Kellyanne Conway blasts Hillary Clinton over slow condemnation of Harvey Weinstein .
Pool/Getty ImagesWhite House counselor Kellyanne Conway took to Twitter on Tuesday afternoon to blast Hillary Clinton over her slow pace to condemn Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein's alleged sexual abuses. "It took Hillary abt 5White House counselor Kellyanne Conway took to Twitter on Tuesday afternoon to blast Hillary Clinton over her slow pace to condemn Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein's alleged sexual abuses.

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