How the Democrats Running for Re-election in 2022 Spent Their Harvey Weinstein Money

Long before dozens of women accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault at the start of the #MeToo movement, the film producer was known to donate thousands of dollars to Democratic politicians and organizations.

After The New York Times published an investigation that recounted decades of allegations against Weinstein, many of the campaigns Weinstein previously donated money to publicly condemned him and announced plans to either return the money they received or donate it to charity.

Harvey Weinstein
A handful of the Democrats running for re-election in 2022 donated earlier contributions from Harvey Weinstein to charity after The New York Times published an expose in 2017 containing allegations of sexual assault and sexual harassment. In the photo above, Weinstein is photographed arriving at the Manhattan Criminal Court on February 24, 2020 in New York City. JOHANNES EISELE/AFP via Getty Images

The list of politicians and groups that received financial contributions from Weinstein over the years is long, and ranges all the way from the presidency down to congressional representatives and state office holders.

Not all of the politicians Weinstein backed won their elections, but some did, including former President Barack Obama, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Weinstein was convicted in early 2020 of rape and sexual assault. He has been serving his sentence at a prison in New York, but was ordered by a judge in mid-June to return to Los Angeles to face additional charges there, The Associated Press reported.

As Weinstein prepares for his return to the courtroom, a handful of the politicians he once donated to are eligible for re-election in 2022. Here is a look back at how they responded to accusations against Weinstein in 2017 and what they did with the money he donated to their campaigns.

Chuck Schumer
Federal Election Commission records show Weinstein began contributing to Sen. Chuck Schumer's (D-NY) campaigns in the late 1990s, and has donated more than $10,000 during that time. Schumer's office told Newsweek that he would be "donating all of the contributions to several charities supporting women." In this photo, Schumer speaks during a news conference about the Senate vote on methane regulation outside of the U.S. Capitol on April 28, 2021 in Washington, D.C. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images

Chuck Schumer

Now the majority leader in the U.S. Senate, Chuck Schumer was first elected to represent New York in the chamber in 1998, about one year after Federal Election Commission records show Weinstein began contributing to Schumer's campaigns. Weinstein donated more than $10,000 to Schumer's campaigns over the years, with the latest contribution gifted in 2015 during Schumer's most recent bid for re-election.

Matt House, a spokesperson for Schumer's office, told The Hill in early October 2017 that Schumer would be "donating all of the contributions to several charities supporting women." Schumer is expected to run for re-election next fall and, if he wins, will begin his fifth term in early 2023.

Newsweek reached out to Schumer's office to confirm how much of the money was donated and which organizations received it but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Patrick Leahy
Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) questions FBI Director Christopher Wray during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on June 23, 2021. SARAH SILBIGER/AFP via Getty Images

Patrick Leahy

FEC records show Weinstein began contributing to Senator Patrick Leahy's re-election campaigns in 1991, nearly two decades after Leahy began representing Vermont in the chamber. Weinstein's last contribution to Leahy was in 2016.

According to The Daily Beast, Leahy was the first among those who received contributions from Weinstein in 2016 to announce after The New York Times' report that he would give Weinstein's money away. Leahy's office told Newsweek Leahy's campaigns received $5,600 in total from Weinstein over the years, all of which Leahy donated to the Vermont Women's Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation.

Leahy has not yet announced whether he will seek re-election in 2022. He has represented Vermont in the Senate since 1974 and is currently completing his eighth term in office.

Richard Blumenthal
Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) asks questions during a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and the Law, at the U.S. Capitol on April 27, 2021 in Washington, D.C. Tasos Katopodis-Pool/Getty Images

Richard Blumenthal

Like Leahy and Schumer, Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal also received money from Weinstein for his 2016 re-election campaign. Blumenthal was elected to the Senate in 2010, making 2016 his first bid for re-election.

When Newsweek contacted Blumenthal's office to confirm how much of the money his campaign received was donated and which organizations received those donated funds, the senator's office directed Newsweek to a 2017 article by The Associated Press, which quoted Blumenthal as saying he was "deeply disturbed" by the allegations against Weinstein and "aghast at how many and how often these instances of harassment and intimidation were." The AP article reported Blumenthal at the time planned to donate the $2,700 his campaign received from Weinstein in 2016 to the Connecticut Alliance to End Sexual Violence.

Currently in his second term, Blumenthal told Connecticut media outlets last fall that he intends to run for re-election in 2022.

Rosa DeLauro
Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) speaks to reporters as she leaves House Democratic Caucus meeting in the Capitol Visitor Center on June 15, 2021 in Washington, D.C. Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Rosa DeLauro

Rosa DeLauro first ran to represent Connecticut's 3rd District in the House of Representatives in 1990 and has held her seat in the district ever since. She was most recently re-elected last fall with 58.7% of the vote and will be up for re-election again in 2022.

FEC records show Weinstein donated to DeLauro's re-election campaign once, during her third bid for re-election in 1996. Shortly after news of the Weinstein allegations surfaced, a spokesperson for DeLauro's office told The Hartford Courant DeLauro would donate that $1,000 campaign contribution to Domestic Violence Services of Greater New Haven, a treatment center located in her district.

Newsweek reached out to DeLauro's office to confirm that donation was made but did not receive a response in time for publication.

John Garamendi
Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif., walks through the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017. Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

John Garamendi

Congressman John Garamendi first ran to represent California's 10th District during a special election he won in 2009, and went on to represent the state's 3rd District after some redistricting took place. State election records obtained by the Center for Responsive Politics' website OpenSecrets shows Weinstein donated $1,000 to Garamendi's campaign once, in early 2008. Garamendi will be up for re-election in 2022.

A Garamendi spokesperson told Newsweek the campaign to which Weinstein contributed that money has been closed for more than 10 years.

"Congressman Garamendi hasn't solicited or received a contribution from Harvey Weinstein at any point during his tenure in Congress," the spokesperson said in a statement. "He's never solicited a contribution from him. Weinstein did contribute an unsolicited donation when Garamendi was serving as Lt. Governor in 2008 and represented nearly 40 million people in California. That campaign account has been closed for well over a decade, and Mr. Garamendi condemns Harvey Weinstein and his abhorrent actions in the strongest possible terms."

Andrew Cuomo
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a press conference at One World Trade Center on June 15, 2021 in New York City. David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Andrew Cuomo

Weinstein began contributing to Andrew Cuomo's campaigns in 2006, when the New York Democrat was running to become his state's attorney general. Cuomo went on to become New York's governor after winning the gubernatorial election in 2010, and is expected to run for re-election next fall.

Over 11 years, Weinstein contributed more than 100,000 to Cuomo's campaigns, the latest of which was $25,000 given in April 2017, according to records obtained by OpenSecrets. Cuomo received a similar $25,000 contribution from Weinstein one year earlier, the records show.

As The New York Times reported in mid-October 2017, Cuomo first said he would give $50,000 of what his campaigns received from Weinstein to a woman's advocacy organization. The governor's campaign later told reporters Cuomo decided to donate the full amount Weinstein donated to all of his campaigns to charity.

Newsweek reached out to Cuomo's office to confirm how much of the money was donated and which organizations received it but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Ned Lamont
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont speaks at a COVID-19 community vaccination clinic on March 14, 2021 in Stamford, Connecticut. John Moore/Getty Images

Ned Lamont

Twelve years before Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont won his 2018 gubernatorial election, FEC records show Weinstein donated $1,000 to a campaign Lamont was running at the time to represent Connecticut in the U.S. Senate. Though Lamont defeated his rival, Joe Lieberman, in the 2006 primary election, he lost in the fall after Lieberman began campaigning against him as a third-party candidate.

An October 2017 article by The Connecticut Mirror reported Lamont closed his 2006 campaign fund before the expose on Weinstein was published.

A representative with Lamont's office told Newsweek the governor self-funded much of his 2018 campaign. The representative reiterated the 2018 campaign was run at a different time and for a different office than Lamont's senatorial campaign, which by that point had been closed. While Lamont will be eligible for re-election in 2022, his office said he has not yet decided if he will run.

Terry McAuliffe
Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA) speaks to supporters while campaigning June 4, 2021 in Charlottesville, Virginia. Win McNamee/Getty Images

Terry McAuliffe

Terry McAuliffe served as the governor of Virginia between 2014 and 2018. McAuliffe is running as a candidate in Virginia's next gubernatorial election, which is to take place this November.

Records obtained through the Virginia Public Access Project show Weinstein in November 2013 made an in-kind travel donation to McAuliffe's earlier gubernatorial campaign worth $32,535. The Weinstein Company separately made a direct contribution to McAuliffe's campaign in October 2013 worth $25,000.

McAuliffe's 2021 campaign directed Newsweek to a statement a McAuliffe spokesperson made at the time to The Richmond Times-Dispatch, which said Weinstein's actions were "indefensible."

"Governor McAuliffe offers his support to all who have suffered as a result of this abuse and misuse of power, and is grateful to everyone who has come forward," the McAuliffe spokesperson said. "He will continue to fight against sexual assault, harassment and violence against women. No woman should have to tolerate these types of disgraceful offenses."

The full $57,535 was donated to the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance in October 2017, McAuliffe's 2021 campaign told Newsweek.

Updated 6/29 at 12:35 p.m. ET: This article has been updated to reflect that representatives for New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo did not respond to Newsweek's requests for confirmation regarding how much of the money their campaigns received from Harvey Weinstein was donated to charity and which organizations received those donations.