Left-wing political operatives and Hillary Clinton backers David Brock and Susie Tompkins Buell bankrolled $700,000 allegedly to find people who would accuse then-candidate Donald Trump of sexual misconduct before Election Day 2016.
Brock’s American Bridge 21st Century Foundation and Buell, a major donor to the foundation, reportedly donated the six-figure sums to Lisa Bloom’s law firm, which specializes in sexual harassment allegations against public figures, according to a report from the New York Times.
Brock gave $200,000, and one of his major donors, Susie Tompkins Buell, gave $500,000.
Bloom’s firm capitalized on the sexual harassment allegations against Trump in the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election, offering to sell alleged victims’ stories to media outlets for a 33 percent commission.
She reportedly solicited money from donors to provide security and a “safe house” for women who were willing to publicly accuse Trump of sexual assault.
Bloom, who is the daughter of feminist lawyer Gloria Allred, admitted to contacting donors in an interview with The Hill in December, but she never released the identities of the donors and denied being in contact with Clinton’s campaign.
However, Bloom did not mention whether her firm was in contact with Clinton-supporting Super PACs. Democrats familiar with Bloom’s operations told the Times that Brock and Buell were behind the donations supporting a last-ditch effort to get women to come forward with their stories to potentially sway the election results.
The efforts failed after only one woman said she was willing to come forward if she got paid $2 million and then never came forward with her story. Bloom claimed that she refunded the donor cash with the exception of some “out-of-pocket expenses” accrued from trying to put cases together, but Democrats familiar with the firm’s financial arrangements said otherwise.
They said Bloom’s firm refunded Buell’s money but pocketed the money from American Bridge.
Brock and Buell declined to comment on their financial relationship with Bloom’s firm.
Brock has funded other left-wing causes, including one that would try and build “the Breitbart of the left.”