RNC accepts $248K from Steve Wynn

Casino mogul accused of sexual misconduct

By Fredreka Schouten, CNN
Charles Krupa/AP via CNN

Steve Wynn

Billionaire Steve Wynn left his casino empire and a top Republican National Committee spot last year, after allegations of sexual harassment and assault emerged.

But that has not stopped the Republican National Committee from accepting a large check from the mogul. Wynn donated $248,500 to the RNC last month, a person familiar with the donation confirmed. The contribution was first reported by Politico.

Wynn donated an additional $150,000 last month to the Republicans' Senate campaign arm, according to a filing Monday with the Federal Election Commission.

Wynn resigned his post as the RNC's finance chairman last year, following allegations in The Wall Street Journal of sexual misconduct that spanned decades. Wynn, who has denied any wrongdoing, also resigned in February 2018 as chairman and chief executive of Wynn Resorts. He said the "avalanche" of bad publicity made it impossible for him to remain at the helm of the company.

"While we must take any allegations like these seriously, everyone is entitled to the presumption of innocence and due process," RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement. "Over the last year and a half, multiple investigations into the allegations against Steve Wynn have concluded."

The decision to take the money comes after top Republican officials criticized Democrats over past donations from Harvey Weinstein, the former film executive who has been charged in New York with rape and sexual assault. Weinstein has denied the charges.

In a 2017 news release that detailed Weinstein's contributions to Democratic party figures over the years, McDaniel urged Democrats to return his "dirty money."

In her statement this week, McDaniel noted that Wynn "has not been charged with or found guilty of any crimes."

"At this point, there is no reason for refusing his support," she added.

State gaming commissions in Nevada and Massachusetts both levied multimillion-dollar fines on Wynn Resorts, following regulators' investigations into the sexual misconduct allegations.

The Republican National Committee and other national party committees must file reports by midnight Monday, detailing their donations and spending in April.

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