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As Wynn parts ways with his company, the RNC keeps his donations

Casino mogul Steve Wynn during a news conference in Medford, Mass., Tuesday, March 15, 2016.
Casino mogul Steve Wynn during a news conference in Medford, Mass., Tuesday, March 15, 2016.

It's been nearly two weeks since billionaire casino mogul Steve Wynn, facing misconduct allegations, resigned as the finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. This week, as NBC News reported, he's also parted ways with the company he helped create.

Billionaire casino magnate Steve Wynn stepped down as CEO of Wynn Resorts, the company said Tuesday.Wynn, who has donated millions to the Republican Party, was accused of sexual misconduct by several people who have worked at his Las Vegas casinos, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal in late January. The article detailed a pattern of behavior that spans decades and included accusations by employees that they were coerced by him to perform sex acts.

This would ordinarily be the point at which the RNC announces that it's giving up the money it received from Wynn, but that's apparently not the case.

A Wall Street Journal reporter noted yesterday that an RNC spokesperson said Wynn stepping down as his company's CEO "doesn't change" the party's position on keeping his contributions.

RNC Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel recently said she's willing to return the money -- if an investigation launched by Wynn's company finds compelling evidence of wrongdoing.

As we discussed last week, the RNC had an entirely different approach when Harvey Weinstein faced related allegations last fall. It was just a few months ago that the public first learned about the Harvey Weinstein scandal, and at the time, the RNC seemed eager to exploit the controversy for partisan gain. In fact, the RNC invested considerable energy, not only in trying to tie Weinstein to Democratic candidates he supported, but also in demanding that the DNC return any contributions they received from the Hollywood producer.

When the DNC was slow to respond, the Republican National Committee intensified its focus. It didn’t matter that Weinstein had no formal connection to Democratic politics; he was a Democratic donor and for the RNC, that was enough. “If the DNC truly stands up for women like they say they do, then returning Weinstein’s dirty money should be a no-brainer,” McDaniel said in October.

Complicating matters is the disparate responses within the Republican Party itself. If the Republican Governors Association decided to reject Wynn’s money, why isn’t the Republican National Committee doing the same thing?

For that matter, if McDaniel is inclined to wait to see the results of an investigation from Wynn’s company, why did she accept his resignation?