Billionaire Democrat financier, George Soros, lashed out at one of the Democrats’ top 2020 contenders — and Hillary Clinton’s heir apparent — Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), for her role in Sen. Al Franken’s fall from grace.
In a Huffington Post article clearly aimed at rehabilitating Franken’s public image — something that seems to be a cause celebre among progressives at the moment — writer Amanda Terkel notes that some of Franken’s most prominent critics have fallen out of favor with the party’s godfather, including Gillibrand.
Soros reportedly accused Gillibrand of going after Franken, “whom I admire,” to “improve her chances” at becoming the party’s 2020 presidential contender.
He’s not wrong. Gillibrand was an early adopter of the #MeToo movement and saw a way to curry favor with the same feminists who backed her mentor and predecessor Hillary Clinton, in embracing a call to rid Congress, and not just Hollywood, of sexists. She was the first to call on Franken to resign, and has touted that fact repeatedly in speeches she believes will endear her to the progressive left.
She said as much to the Huffington Post.
“If standing up for women who have been wronged makes George Soros mad, that’s on him,” Gillibrand said in a statement. “But I won’t hesitate to always do what I think is right. For nearly a year, we have seen countless acts of courage as women and men have spoken hard truths about sexual assault and sexual harassment and demanded accountability.”
“I stand with them in this new watershed moment of important change in our society on what we deem as acceptable,” she continued. “It is clear that we must put our morals and the valuing of women ahead of party loyalty. When someone does something wrong, you have to speak up and be counted, whether it’s President Trump, or a Democratic colleague.”
Gillibrand also called on President Donald Trump to resign over sexual harassment allegations that became public well before he was elected to office.
But as with her cynical embrace of the “Abolish ICE” movement, Gillibrand’s motive in calling for Franken’s resignation was clear, not just because she’s obviously calculating, but because the progressive left was well aboard the bandwagon — and the position publicly favored — before Gillibrand piled on. Gillibrand touts “zero tolerance” but waited until at least half a dozen women had come forward with claims against Franken before she spoke out.
That said, a feud with Soros could harm Gillibrand’s long-term chances at holding an office higher than her current one, but only if she was taking money from Soros to begin with. Soros and his organizations prefer more authentic progressives, which explains why he’s bankrolling a public relations campaign for Franken, but also why Gillibrand — who likely has Clinton’s donor list on file — is pushing back.