The RNC Steve Wynn show closes in record time

It probably seems like only yesterday that John was writing about casino mogul and RNC finance chair Steve Wynn being accused of sexual assault at one of his casinos. That’s because it was only yesterday. But it took barely 24 hours before Wynn informed the RNC that he would be stepping aside. (Politico)

Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn on Saturday stepped down as Republican National Committee finance chairman, according to three senior Republicans briefed on the decision.

The decision followed a Friday report in the Wall Street Journal alleging that Wynn engaged in sexual harassment.

“Today I accepted Steve Wynn’s resignation as Republican National Committee finance chair,” said RNC chair Ronna Romney McDaniel.

This was a marriage of convenience to begin with. (And I’m speaking of Wynn’s position with the RNC, not his wife who he is currently divorcing.) The RNC didn’t need this headline following them around and either Wynn saw the writing on the wall and did this on his own or somebody picked up the phone and “suggested” he might need more free time to take care of his legal affairs.

Are the charges legitimate? Who knows anymore, what with the blizzard of cases swamping the media. Wynn is flatly denying it, rather than giving one of those pseudo-apologies. Also, we’re talking about two accusers, which is more than one, but far less than many of the Hollywood types who had women lining up to make their claims like the sidewalk outside the Apple store the day before the next iPhone comes out. With that in mind, he deserves a chance to present a defense of his name if such can be mustered.

Is it possible that it’s true? We’re talking about a powerful billionaire who was constantly surrounded by half-naked showgirls. Let’s just say I wouldn’t faint from shock if the allegations proved true. But at the same time, I have to pause and consider what John was saying yesterday. The woman who made the allegation drawing all the press right now was paid $7.5M dollars to keep silent and not take him to court. Who paid the money? If it came out of Wynn’s own pocket, while he could clearly afford it, that’s a big check to write in the interest of avoiding some bad PR if he’s innocent. But if his casino paid it? $7.5 million wasn’t even a hiccup in their books.

I don’t give as much weight to John’s question about why a guy that rich couldn’t just ring up a wildly expensive call girl if he was regularly paying out $1K per hour for a massage. I’m sure that’s true, but in the mind of someone who would actually behave that way, there was probably something more “normal” (for lack of a better word) in trying to pursue a working girl and get her to consent to something than just paying a hooker. Of course, by this point, I’m speculating about things which are currently unknowable.

Guilty or innocent, Wynn will be left to sink or swim on his own at this point. The RNC needed him gone and out he went. Fighting with them about it would have only made the situation look worse.