Feinstein Dodges on Whether She’ll Return Weinstein Contributions: ‘I’ll Certainly Take a Look’

• October 8, 2017 11:18 am


Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) hesitated to say she would return money donated to her by movie mogul Harvey Weinstein after decades of sexual harassment complaints against him emerged, saying in an interview airing Sunday she will "take a look."

According to federal records, Weinstein gave Feinstein $375 in 1992 and $1,000 in 1994, the Los Angeles Times reported. Weinstein, an Oscar-winning producer and major Democratic donor, has taken an indefinite leave of absence from his company after lurid details of sexual harassment came to light in a bombshell article by the New York Times.

"Meet The Press" host Chuck Todd asked Feinstein if she planned to return contributions she received from Weinstein. Fellow California Sen. Kamala Harris (D.) already said she will donate money she received from Weinstein to charity.

"I don't know that I've received any. I'll certainly take a look, and then I'll make a decision," Feinstein said.

"They found some about 20-odd years ago on that front, so any of that money you plan on getting rid of or not?" Todd asked.

"I just don't know," Feinstein said. "I mean, any time somebody does something wrong—and he's done mighty wrong—and no one has ever questioned where I stand on any of this stuff, somebody comes to you and says, ‘Oh, they contributed to you, are you giving back the money?' And you sort of look like a startled bird and say, ‘Well, let me look and see.' And that's the best I can do for you today."

Weinstein has donated nearly $600,000 to Democrats and hosted high-priced fundraisers for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Several other Democrats have already announced they are giving away the donations to charities, although the Democratic National Committee was criticized for giving just a portion of the money away, and to Democrat-aligned groups.

Feinstein added at the end of the interview with Todd that she was "close" to announcing a re-election bid for her Senate seat. She hinted she would run again after she told Todd she still had "things to fight for."