Lena Dunham warned Hillary Clinton aides in 2016 that campaign backer Harvey Weinstein was “a rapist” and allegations about him were likely to be made public, according to a New York Times report about the disgraced producer.
The actor and writer, a prominent supporter of Clinton during her presidential run, told the paper that she told two members of the Democratic nominee’s campaign staff about alleged sexual misconduct by Weinstein, who has since been accused of sexual assault and harassment by over 90 women, and expressed concern about the producer’s involvement in Clinton’s campaign.
“I just want you to let you know that Harvey’s a rapist and this is going to come out at some point,” Dunham claims she told the Clinton campaign’s deputy communications director, Kristina Schake. “I think it’s a really bad idea for him to host fundraisers and be involved, because it’s an open secret in Hollywood that he has a problem with sexual assault.”
According to the Times, Dunham also claims she warned Clinton’s campaign spokesperson Adrienne Elrod, who organised events with celebrity campaigners, about Weinstein’s behaviour. She says that, as far as she was aware, the Clinton campaign did not respond to her concerns about Weinstein.
Another prominent Clinton supporter, former Vanity Fair editor Tina Brown warned a member of Clinton’s team about Weinstein as early as 2008, according to the Times. “I was hearing that Harvey’s sleaziness with women had escalated since I left Talk in 2002 and she was unwise to be so closely associated with him,” Brown said.
The Times report claims that Weinstein had a network of enablers who assisted him in covering up allegations of sexual abuse, including agents, personal assistants and tabloid journalists. The report also includes new allegations of sexual misconduct by the producer, including claims that he made “unwelcome advances” towards two women at this year’s Toronto film festival, despite being aware that reporters were working on reports about his behaviour.
Weinstein is the subject of criminal cases in New York, London and Los Angeles. The producer is reportedly the subject of several civil suits made by women in the UK and the US.
A spokesperson for Weinstein says that the producer denies “any allegations of non-consensual sex” made against him.
Credit: The Guardian