The Republican National Committee is refusing to return money donated by Steve Wynn, a casino magnate and major political donor who is facing dozens of accusations of sexual misconduct and assault.
Wynn resigned from his casino business this week amid the allegations, having already resigned from the RNC.
"In the last couple of weeks, I have found myself the focus of an avalanche of negative publicity," Wynn said in a statement after his resignation. "As I have reflected upon the environment this has created — one in which a rush to judgment takes precedence over everything else, including the facts — I have reached the conclusion I cannot continue to be effective in my current roles."
Ronna Romney McDaniel, the chair of the RNC, was quick to urge Democrats to return any funds received from Harvey Weinstein, a major supporter of liberal political causes, as the New York Times broke its bombshell story about his alleged decades of abuse. But now, with a major Republican donor facing scrutiny, McDaniel appears to find the matter much less urgent.
"Steve has denied these allegations," she said after the accusations came out in a Fox News interview. "Unlike Harvey Weinstein and Al Franken and others, Steve has denied them."
It's true that Wynn has denied the allegations. But in the Wall Street Journal story that broke the news of the allegations against Wynn, literally dozens accused him of misconduct. At this point, many other Republicans have already abandoned Wynn. The Republican Governors Association, House Speaker Paul Ryan, Republican Sens. Jeff Flake and Rob Portman, along with many others, have all returned or donated the money they received from Wynn, CNN reports.
But McDaniel? She thinks there's plenty of time before she has to decide what to do with the $325,000 Wynn donated to the party.
Who we partner with and count as our friends, are moral choices. These choices don't need to wait for the judgments of courts and legal systems. Sometimes, the seriousness and extent of accusations should be enough for political leaders to make tough calls and distance themselves from former allies.