WASHINGTON ― Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer says the Republican National Committee should return donations from casino mogul Steve Wynn.
Spicer, who worked as a spokesman for the RNC before joining Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, told MSNBC on Monday that the party should “absolutely” return all the money Wynn contributed during the current campaign cycle.
“I think we need to have a standard that says that if a credible allegation comes, we need to take it absolutely seriously,” Spicer told MSNBC’s Craig Melvin. “I think the right thing to do for the Republican Party is to have the higher moral ground and say we’re going to return the money.”
Wynn, who resigned Saturday as the RNC finance chairman, was accused of sexual harassment and misconduct spanning several decades in a bombshell Wall Street Journal report published Friday. Wynn denies the allegations.
The RNC has been silent on the matter of Wynn’s donations since the WSJ report was published ― opening itself to charges of hypocrisy given that the party called on Democrats to return money that Harvey Weinstein donated to their campaigns over his years of activity in fundraising circles.
Wynn donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican party committees over the years, including the RNC and its congressional counterparts, the National Republican Congressional Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
In his interview on MSNBC, Spicer defended himself when asked by Melvin why he had been silent on the matter of Wynn’s donations but not that of the money Weinstein had contributed to the Democratic Party.
“I think I’ve been pretty outspoken with respect to all the sexual harassment. All allegations should be taken seriously,” the former Trump aide said.
A number of Republicans have said they plan to return or donate funds they received in 2016 from Wynn or groups linked to his companies. Those members of Congress include: House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.).