Hillary Clinton defended her past association with disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein in an interview released Tuesday, suggesting she would not have taken the thousands in donations to her 2016 campaign if she had “known what we know now.”
“How could we have known? He raised money for me, for the Obamas, for Democrats in general,” Clinton told The Hollywood Reporter when asked if she had any regrets about her association with Weinstein. “And that at the time was something that everybody thought made sense. And of course, if all of us had known what we know now, it would have affected our behavior.”
Weinstein donated the maximum amount possible for an individual contributor to Clinton in both the 2016 Democratic primary and the general election, which Clinton said in 2017 that she would donate to charity after allegations of sexual misconduct broke against the Hollywood producer. FEC records show that Weinstein has raised over $2.3 million for Democratic causes in his career.
Actress Lena Dunham and journalist Tina Brown have both said they informed Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign of Weinstein’s sexual misconduct and warned them not to associate with him or accept his donations.
“I just want you to let you know that Harvey’s a rapist and this is going to come out at some point,” Dunham recalled telling deputy director of communications Kristina Schake.
Clinton apparently ignored the warnings, having dinner with Weinstein just weeks after her electoral defeat.
Investigative journalist Ronan Farrow revealed in October that his work to expose Weinstein made Clinton and her staff “nervous,” and that she canceled an in-person interview after she found out he was working to expose Weinstein.
“Harvey Weinstein was one of Hillary Clinton’s big Hollywood bundlers, he brought in a lot of money for her, they were friends, and it was a personal moment of gut punch to me, like so many of these plot twists in this book, where people that I thought would report that kind of reporting, actually were very leery of it,” Farrow said.