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Thu Feb 11, 2021, 12:56 PM

AP: LP knew about Weaver's problems back in June 2020. They & their outside counsel were told.

It seems the Lincoln Project founders lied about what they knew and when they knew it. The LP knew about Weaver's problems back in June 2020. Expect lawsuits. Many lawsuits.

This news article is from the AP, not some conservative blog hit piece.



How a leading anti-Trump group ignored a crisis in its ranks

WASHINGTON (AP) — Last June, the Lincoln Project was on a high.

Led by several prominent former Republican consultants, its slickly produced ads attacking President Donald Trump made it perhaps the best known of the so-called Never Trump organizations. The group tried to claim a higher moral ground in an effort to purge Trump from the GOP. Money flowed in by the tens of millions of dollars from donors eager to help.

But within the organization, a crisis was brewing.

In June 2020, members of the organization’s leadership were informed in writing and in subsequent phone calls of at least 10 specific allegations of harassment against co-founder John Weaver, including two involving Lincoln Project employees, according to multiple people with direct knowledge of the situation. The email and phone calls raise questions about the Lincoln Project’s statement last month that it was “shocked” when accusations surfaced publicly this year. It’s also the first known suggestion that Weaver targeted a Lincoln Project staffer.

Despite the early warning, the group took no action against Weaver and pressed forward with its high-profile work. For the collection of GOP consultants and former officials, being anti-Trump was becoming very good for business. Of the $90 million Lincoln Project has raised, more than $50 million has gone to firms controlled by the group’s leaders.

More: https://apnews.com/article/donald-trump-b14be5f06588b8f1d78125d4141394cb


The other bombshell is the money issue which main stream media has stayed away from until now.

I know that people here love the work the Lincoln Project does. I understand and did as well, but we don't need to ignore the facts as reported in this article.



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Reply AP: LP knew about Weaver's problems back in June 2020. They & their outside counsel were told. (Original post)
MelissaB Feb 2021 OP
MelissaB Feb 2021 #1
DeminPennswoods Feb 2021 #39
soothsayer Feb 2021 #2
MelissaB Feb 2021 #3
demmiblue Feb 2021 #4
MelissaB Feb 2021 #5
demmiblue Feb 2021 #7
Gore1FL Feb 2021 #35
brewens Feb 2021 #6
OnDoutside Feb 2021 #8
MelissaB Feb 2021 #9
OnDoutside Feb 2021 #10
octoberlib Feb 2021 #11
BannonsLiver Feb 2021 #12
Iggo Feb 2021 #13
intheflow Feb 2021 #14
MelissaB Feb 2021 #15
MelissaB Feb 2021 #16
MelissaB Feb 2021 #17
MelissaB Feb 2021 #18
MelissaB Feb 2021 #19
MelissaB Feb 2021 #20
MelissaB Feb 2021 #21
Vivienne235729 Feb 2021 #22
MelissaB Feb 2021 #23
MelissaB Feb 2021 #24
MelissaB Feb 2021 #25
LineReply .
WhiskeyGrinder Feb 2021 #26
MelissaB Feb 2021 #28
MelissaB Feb 2021 #27
spooky3 Feb 2021 #29
MelissaB Feb 2021 #30
MelissaB Feb 2021 #31
Sewa Feb 2021 #32
MelissaB Feb 2021 #33
MelissaB Feb 2021 #34
JI7 Feb 2021 #36
MelissaB Feb 2021 #37
Just_Vote_Dem Feb 2021 #38
MelissaB Feb 2021 #40
MelissaB Feb 2021 #41
MelissaB Feb 2021 #42
MelissaB Feb 2021 #43

Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 12:58 PM

1. About the $$

Since its creation, the Lincoln Project has raised $90 million. But only about a third of the money, roughly $27 million, directly paid for advertisements that aired on broadcast and cable, or appeared online, during the 2020 campaign, according to an analysis of campaign finance disclosures and data from the ad tracking firm Kantar/CMAG.

That leaves tens of millions of dollars that went toward expenses like production costs, overhead — and exorbitant consulting fees collected by members of the group.

“It raises questions about where the rest of the money ultimately went,” said Brendan Fischer, an attorney with the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center in Washington. “Generally speaking, you’d expect to see a major super PAC spend a majority or more of their money on advertisements and that’s not what happened here.”

The vast majority of the cash was split among consulting firms controlled by its founders, including about $27 million paid to a small firm controlled by Galen and another $21 million paid to a boutique firm run by former Lincoln Project member Ron Steslow, campaign finance disclosures show.

But in many cases it’s difficult to tell how much members of the group were paid. That’s because the Lincoln Project adopted a strategy, much like the Trump campaign they criticized, to mask how much money they earned.

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 13, 2021, 09:33 AM

39. The bulk of the LP was made up of people

who did campaign ads, were campaign consultants and strategists. Why wouldn't they use the expertise of their own firms or themselves? I would've expected them to raise money to pay for themselves and their work.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 12:59 PM

2. Well they're republicans

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Response to soothsayer (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:00 PM

3. On top of that they are Republican consultants.

It's dirty.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:07 PM

4. I remember Yashar Ali commenting on this when it broke in Jan...

he basically intimated that there was no way that they didn't know as it was common knowledge. Welp, he was proven right.

They certainly are raking it in!

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Response to demmiblue (Reply #4)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:12 PM

5. When I posted the article I expected to sink fast because of confirmation bias. People don't like to

read things they don't like. Liberals (like me) really like LP and don't like reading negative things about them.

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #5)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:34 PM

7. I liked their videos/TV appearances, but I have no allegiance to them.

I prefer truth and transparency, even if it means I could potentially be disappointed.

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Response to demmiblue (Reply #7)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:52 PM

35. Exactly.

Ride the wave of facts. They take you where you need going.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:33 PM

6. Any group of peers like the Lincoln Project, House, Senate, athletic department or whatever,

knows who the crooks and and perverts are. Weaver, Hastert, Larry Craig, Gym Jordan and numerous others. They always know.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 01:52 PM

8. So, from the article, two points

There is no evidence that the Lincoln Project buried the allegations against Weaver for business reasons.


While the AP has not seen the email, its contents were confirmed by four people who had directly seen it.


So this hit piece is based on something the reporter has not seen, where as normally a reporter would at least have sight of, but not get a copy. Dodgy ground.

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Response to OnDoutside (Reply #8)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 02:09 PM

9. 1. "for business reasons". Just spitballing here, but why else would they bury it?

2. If the email proves to be wrong I'd expect the AP to post a statement saying as much. I doubt the AP would have gone to print with an article like this unless their sources are solid.

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #9)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 02:34 PM

10. They've been getting hits from the far right and the far left, in an effort to take them down.

The reporter hasn't seen the email, only relying on hearsay. Who was it sent from, who was it sent to ? What proof do they have that it was shown to a wider audience ? It doesn't fit with what TLP came out and said last week, if they knew this email was out there. That's why this has a whiff about it. It's reminiscent of a John Soloman hit piece and a guy in the Washington Post (Erik something).

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 02:40 PM

11. Weaver had a heart attack and quit the Lincoln Project last June or July.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 03:21 PM

12. LOL

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 03:24 PM

13. "Republicans Lied Again" is not a bombshell.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 03:55 PM

14. Republicans gonna Republican.

The Lincoln Project is the "leftist" arm of the GOP (Generators of Propaganda). Advertising is their thing, they've just evolved since Gingrich's direct mail campaigns. This shocks so many on the left because when it came to Trump (and Trumpers), they were actually telling the truth. But I'm sure it's a one-off because these guys are the party of Reagan and the Bushes.* And that party is toxic and conservative AF.








*Reagan and the Bushes would be my punk band name, if I were ever to start one.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 08:42 PM

15. From George Conway:

This report is disturbing and appalling. The Lincoln Project should hire an independent counsel to investigate these circumstances thoroughly and provide a full accounting of the facts to everyone who worked at the organization, as well as all those who contributed to it.


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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 10:42 PM

16. Steve Schmidt confirmed that Project Lincoln will be hiring an outside professional to "figure out

SteveSchmidtSES has just now confirmed to me that @ProjectLincoln will be hiring an outside professional to “figure out all of this and who knew what when,” following my reporting.




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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Thu Feb 11, 2021, 10:47 PM

17. Statement from Project Lincoln co-founder Jennifer Horn:

1/ New statement from @ProjectLincoln co-founder Jennifer Horn: "When the New York Times report on Weaver came out recently, I started getting phone calls from some victims who shared very disturbing stories about their interactions with him..."








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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:28 AM

18. Statement from The Lincoln Project:

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:33 AM

19. Posted and deleted by TLP tonight

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #19)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:34 AM

20. Lincoln Project seems to have taken down photos it posted of Jennifer Horn's Twitter account that it

Lincoln Project seems to have taken down photos it posted of Jennifer Horn’s Twitter account that it seems rather unlikely she gave her former colleagues permission to access, screenshot and post.


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Response to MelissaB (Reply #19)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:40 AM

21. George Conway's response to this tweet:

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:43 AM

22. It sounds like TLP is doing the right thing by getting 3rd party involved. I tend to be weary

Of stuff like this bc it makes me think this is a hit job. TLP is exceptionally talented and successful in what they do. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out bannon or stone’s fingerprints on this. But again, they ARE republicans and I can’t imagine anyone confusing them for angels.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:49 AM

23. LP tweeted out a thread that appeared to contain screenshots from their former partner's account

Lincoln Project tweeted out a thread that appeared to contain screenshots from their former partner @NHJennifer's account







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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 12:55 AM

24. Letter from the six former employees and associates.

Here is the letter from the six former employees and associates. They are anonymous in the letter, but I have verified their identities.




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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:20 AM

25. Co-founder of LP says she did NOT give consent

to tweet private DMs



Don't be surprised if they lose their twitter account because of this.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:21 AM

26. .

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Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #26)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:54 AM

28. Love that gif

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:53 AM

27. Yashir Ali told @NHJennifer did not have a laptop or phone issued by the Lincoln Project.

9. Important....

I’m told that @NHJennifer did not have a laptop or phone issued by the Lincoln Project.

It is unclear how they accessed her direct messages in order to tweet them.

It wouldn’t have been through a company issued phone or laptop and she did not give them consent





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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 11:09 AM

29. I'm going to wait to hear about the results of

A full investigation.

My pre-judgment is that I suspect LP turned a blind eye to sexual harassment allegations, because that’s sadly too common.

But the allegations of mishandling $? The details are too vague in the article. This is a PAC, right? Aren’t rules different for them? And what does it mean to say LP spent $x on “advertising”? Is that just for placing ads? The videos they produce cost time and money to create, and these guys’ consulting firms may do the design and production, because they make their living in PR. So if a lot of the $ flowed through for that, and there aren’t other problematic expenses, I have no problems with Steve et al collecting big $.

Here’s a NYTimes story: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2021/02/11/us/politics/lincoln-project-john-weaver.amp.html

There is no info in the NYTimes article about the spending allegations. There is info about LP’s knowing earlier about Weaver’s alleged misconduct and lying about Horn.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 07:36 PM

30. Lincoln Project co-founder Steve Schmidt abandons ship

Scoop: Lincoln Project co-founder Steve Schmidt is resigning from the group's board, he told staff on an all-hands call this evening





Scoop: Lincoln Project co-founder resigns

Lincoln Project co-founder Steve Schmidt is resigning from the group's board amid a series of scandals that has rocked the high-dollar anti-Trump super PAC, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Schmidt, a veteran Republican operative, is the latest and most high-profile departure from the group, which is reeling from revelations that another co-founder, John Weaver, used offers of professional advancement in a series of attempts to solicit sex from young men.

https://www.axios.com/lincoln-project-co-founder-resigns-ad554687-f2d1-4b7c-ac0c-5aa555fb312f.html

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #30)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 08:27 PM

31. Steve Schmidt's full statement, given to me:

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 09:57 PM

32. Thank you MelissaB

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Response to Sewa (Reply #32)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:05 PM

33. You're welcome!

I don't make the news, I just thread it.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:09 PM

34. Meghan McCain weighs in on Steve Schmidt and John Weaver





1. I've been very hesitant to comment but since my deceased father keeps getting invoked I will say this:

John Weaver and Steve Schmidt were so despised by my Dad he made it a point to ban them from his funeral. Since 2008, no McCain would have spit on them if they were on fire.

2. My heart goes out to the victims of John Weaver, it's abhorrent and evil - everyone who knew that this was going on deserves to be held accountable. I hope that anyone who covered up for this never works in politics ever again.

3. What disgusts me so much is that anyone who would engage in such awful and potentially illegal behavior would use their media associations with my father to gain opportunities. My dad was betrayed by you, hated you for it, and we all know it.

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Response to MelissaB (Reply #34)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 10:57 PM

36. lol, Meghan upset at use of her father to gain opportunities

She should look in the mirror.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Fri Feb 12, 2021, 11:40 PM

37. Lincoln Project co-founder Ron Steslow was denied a request to be released from his NDA today,

Lincoln Project co-founder Ron Steslow was denied a request to be released from his NDA today, his spokesperson tells me.

This comes a day after the PAC issued a statement saying anyone who wished to be released to talk freely about Weaver “should contact” them “for a release”


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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Sat Feb 13, 2021, 07:49 AM

38. Thank you for your work on this

It is most appreciated

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Response to Just_Vote_Dem (Reply #38)

Sat Feb 13, 2021, 11:06 AM

40. Thanks! It's interesting to me to see how things develop over time,

and things are usually spread out on different threads on DU. I'm not sure that would have been the case here this time because it wasn't really being posted about this time.

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Sat Feb 13, 2021, 02:43 PM

41. Lincoln Project's donation page is no longer working

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Sun Feb 14, 2021, 01:30 PM

42. Probably the last article I'll add here:

Inside the Lincoln Project’s ‘toxic’ workplace

Interviews with nearly two dozen people with knowledge of the group’s workings reveal a culture of infighting, sexist language and disparate treatment.


... snip

The accusations have roiled the organization, and as its current and former employees and contractors began coming forward to discuss them, they described a workplace where women in key positions were sidelined and where sexist and homophobic language was used by those in leadership posts.

... snip

A three-person board — Galen, Madrid and Steslow — was created without input from some of the other co-founders. Eventually, disputes over that board, and its scope, led to bitter infighting that involved individual co-founders lawyering up and threatening one another with “oppo” research, Washington speak for the type of negative information amassed by a political campaign or organization to use against a rival.

... snip

A frequent quip from Schmidt overheard by multiple people was that the Lincoln Project was his vehicle to achieve “generational wealth.”

... snip

Young men were “wizards” while young women were “girls.” Political rivals were “pussies” or “cocksuckers” or “faggots.” By the time the staff convened in Park City, the situation had become so “toxic,” according to more than a dozen accounts, that at least two co-founders, neither of whom remain at the project, had tried unsuccessfully to intervene to improve working conditions.

More: https://19thnews.org/2021/02/lincoln-project-toxic-workplace/



They threatened EACH OTHER with oppo research. But keep in mind that they really had NO IDEA that a person in their main group was a notorious twink chaser and maybe even a pedophile. Spare me...

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Response to MelissaB (Original post)

Tue Feb 16, 2021, 01:35 PM

43. George Conway calls for investigation, says clear they knew last *March*, calls to waive NDA's &

come clean.

An investigation is necessary. But it has to be thorough, and not a whitewash. And—THE LYING HAS TO STOP. It's clear now that, as early last *MARCH*, the people who were in operational control of the Lincoln Project ...

... were told of Weaver's predations. Enough is enough. LP needs to waive the NDAs and come clean.


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