Kingston Hits Elizabeth Warren Over Ties To Ousted New York Attorney General

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A Republican challenger is calling on U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren to return campaign donations raised for her by Eric Schneiderman, the New York attorney general who is resigning after a report that he physically abused four romantic partners.

John Kingston, one of three candidates seeking the Republican nomination to run against Warren in the fall, called on Warren to distance herself from Schneiderman, who co-hosted a fund-raising dinner in New York City for Warren in October 2011 during her first campaign.

“Sen. Warren must immediately do the right thing and return, or donate to an appropriate non-profit, all the donations raised for her campaign by Eric Schneiderman,” Kingston said in a written statement Tuesday.

Schneiderman also spoke just before Warren at a political event in Manhattan in January 2014, and he introduced Warren at an event in Manhattan during her book tour in June 2017.

Kingston questioned Warren’s commitment to fighting for women, noting that Warren did not publicly call on former Democratic senator Al Franken of Minnesota to resign amid allegations of sexual harassment until long after many of her fellow Democrats did.

“Unfortunately, Sen. Warren has a history of hesitating or refusing to stand up for women when the culprits are Democrats,” Kingston said in the statement. “Sen. Warren waited until the very last moment to call for sexual harasser Al Franken to resign and refused to condemn Democratic Senate Leader Stan Rosenberg when he was embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal.”

A spokesman for Warren could not immediately be reached for comment.

Schneiderman, 63, is leaving office today. On Monday, The New Yorker published a story reporting that four women say Schneiderman engaged in “nonconsensual physical violence against them.” Two of the women did so on the record, allowing the magazine to use their names. The story describes the accusers as “articulate, progressive Democratic feminists in their forties who live in Manhattan.”

Schneiderman, who turned up the heat legally on former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and who has championed the MeToo movement, has denied committing assault but acknowledged unusual behavior. In a written statement to the magazine, he said:  “In the privacy of intimate relationships, I have engaged in role-playing and other consensual sexual activity. I have not assaulted anyone. I have never engaged in nonconsensual sex, which is a line I would not cross.”

A few hours after The New Yorker published the story yesterday, he announced he would leave office “at the close of business” Tuesday.

“In the last several hours, serious allegations, which I strongly contest, have been made against me. While these allegations are unrelated to my professional conduct or the operations of the office, they will effectively prevent me from leading the office’s work at this critical time,” Schneiderman said in a statement posted Monday on the New York Attorney General’s web site.

Kingston is running in the September GOP primary in Massachusetts. The other Republican candidates are state Representative Geoff Diehl (R-Whitman) and former Mitt Romney aide and political consultant Beth Lindstrom.


Editor’s Note:  This story will be updated if a spokesman for Senator Warren provides a comment.