Lincoln Project Unsparing in Denunciation of Co-Founder Weaver
The Lincoln Project does not mince words when pointing out and condemning wrongdoing and hypocrisy. The former Republicans have been brutal, but brutally honest, in videos and statements about Donald Trump, his family and other Republicans who put party over country during Trump’s time in power.
It should come as no surprise then that the group was equally unsparing Sunday in its denunciation of one of its own, co-founder John Weaver. The New York Times published an in-depth report that alleges that Weaver for years sent unsolicited and sexually provocative messages young men while suggesting that he could help them launch their careers in politics.
The Lincoln Project’s statement on the Times report cannot be misinterpreted.
The Lincoln Project today released the following statement. pic.twitter.com/k9QkUsiFO5
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) January 31, 2021
The Times report is based on interviews it conducted with 21 men. It reports that Weaver’s solicitations included sending messages to a 14-year-old, asking questions about his body while he was still in high school and then more pointed ones after he turned 18. According the report, none of the men accused Weaver of unlawful conduct. Instead they described feeling preyed upon by an influential older man in the field in which they wanted to work. They said they believed they had to engage with his repeated messaging or lose a professional opportunity.
Another of the Lincoln Project’s co-founders, Steve Schmidt, said its leaders had learned last summer from social media posts that Weaver, who has a wife and two children, might be involved in relationships with men. “There was no awareness or insinuations of any type of inappropriate behavior when we became aware of the chatter at the time,” Schmidt told the Times in an interview.
When the allegations surfaced again in mid-January Weaver issued a statement saying he did not believe he had done anything wrong but said he would not be returning to the Lincoln Project from a medical leave that he had taken beginning in the summer of 2020.