Lena Dunham Says She Warned Hillary Clinton's Campaign About Harvey Weinstein
On Tuesday, The New York Times served up a blistering new dive into how disgraced movie exec Harvey Weinstein used his powerful connections and an elaborate web of complicity to hide his history of sexual assault.
The expansive investigation is full of stunning revelations, including allegations from Lena Dunham that she warned Hillary Clinton's aides about Weinstein during the 2016 presidential campaign. Speaking with the Times, Dunham, a vocal Clinton advocate, recalled how she felt uncomfortable with the producer’s very visible support for the candidate. Weinstein hosted a number of high-profile fundraisers and appeared at events throughout the campaign, which allegedly concerned the Girls star.
Dunham said she had heard stories from other actresses about disturbing encounters with him and feared associating with Weinstein would ultimately come back to haunt Clinton.
“I just want you to let you know that Harvey’s a rapist and this is going to come out at some point,” Dunham said she told Kristina Schake, the campaign’s deputy communications director. “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.”
Dunham told the Times that Schake seemed surprised, but she promised to tell Robby Mook, the campaign manager. Dunham also voiced her concerns to Adrienne Elrod, the Clinton spokeswoman leading efforts with celebrity campaigners. According to the actress, that's where it stopped. The campaign never responded to her warning.
Months later, Dunham says she still has “an incredible allegiance to Hillary,” and does not believe the reports ever traveled to Clinton, though she remains troubled by what had happened. “A year and a half ago, on one of the most progressive campaigns in history, this wasn’t a problem,” she said, referring to the allegations about Weinstein.