Hillary Clinton Breaks Silence On Harvey Weinstein Sexual Assault Reports

Hayley Miller
Several Hollywood stars, media personalities and lawmakers have spoken out against film executive Harvey Weinstein following recently published reports accusing him of sexual harassment.

Hillary Clinton is speaking out against film executive Harvey Weinstein days after The New York Times published a bombshell report detailing numerous sexual harassment allegations against him.

“I was shocked and appalled by the revelations about Harvey Weinstein,” Clinton wrote in a statement released Tuesday. “The behavior described by women coming forward cannot be tolerated. Their courage and support of others is critical in helping to stop this kind of behavior.”

Until Tuesday afternoon, Clinton had been notably silent on the matter. She didn’t mention Weinstein, who has donated and helped raise large sums for the Clintons and the Democratic Party, on Monday at a book tour event at the University of California, Davis ― her first public appearance since the news broke.

The former secretary of state and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, benefited from Weinstein’s donations for more than two decades. Weinstein donated in the range of $100,001 to $250,000 to The Clinton Foundation through June 2017, according to the nonprofit’s website.

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Weinstein was a bundler ― someone who collects money from others after donating the maximum legal personal contribution to a candidate ― for both Clinton and Obama. He’s given a total of $1,422,683 to federal candidates, parties and PACs in all election cycles since 1990, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Former President Barack Obama has yet to comment on Weinstein. Obama has appeared at several fundraisers Weinstein hosted, praising the Hollywood bigwig for his “amazing” movies at one such event in 2013. Malia Obama, the former president’s eldest daughter, interned at The Weinstein Company earlier this year.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, an outspoken advocate for victims of sexual assault, also hasn’t addressed the Weinstein scandal.

Representatives for both Obama and Clinton did not immediately return HuffPost’s requests for comment. A representative for Biden declined to comment, as did Sitrick and Company, the high-profile PR crisis firm representing Weinstein.

On Tuesday, The New Yorker published an explosive report that took the accusations against Weinstein even further. Thirteen women interviewed for the story claimed he sexually harassed or assaulted them between the 1990s and 2015. Three of the women allege Weinstein raped them.

One woman, Lucia Evans, told the magazine she was forced to perform oral sex on Weinstein in 2004 at the New York office building for Miramax, the film production company he then ran with his brother.

“I said, over and over, ‘I don’t want to do this, stop, don’t,’ ” Evans told the magazine. “He’s a big guy. He overpowered me. ... I just sort of gave up. That’s the most horrible part of it, and that’s why he’s been able to do this for so long to so many women: People give up, and then they feel like it’s their fault.”

The Times report prompted the board of The Weinstein Company, a film studio Weinstein founded with his brother in 2005, to fire him on Sunday.

Some Democratic lawmakers, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and Sens. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, quickly condemned Weinstein after the initial Times story and said they would be donating to charities campaign contributions from him.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) announced Friday that she would donate the $5,000 she received from Weinstein to a California-based charity that advocates for women’s equality. 

The Times published an editorial Friday asking major Democratic players, including Obama and the Clintons, to weigh in on the Weinstein reports.

“These Democratic leaders, admired by many young women and men, should make clear that Mr. Weinstein also deserves condemnation,” the editorial said. “If such powerful leaders take the money and stay mum, who will speak for women like Mr. Weinstein’s accusers?”

The Democratic National Committee got at least $100,000 from Weinstein over the years, according to the Times. DNC officials have announced they will donate $30,000 ― the amount Weinstein gave the committee during the last campaign cycle ― to various groups that work to elect women to office.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article said Weinstein raised $1,422,683 between 1990 and 2016 for Clinton and $679,275 between 1990 and 2012 for Obama. The former amount reflects how much he gave to all federal candidates, parties and PACs in all election cycles since 1990, according to CRP.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.