Hotel/casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, possibly the biggest contributor to Republican causes this year, is threatening to sue the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) for libel.
Late last month, the DCCC put out a press release claiming that prostitution money tied to Adelson was donated to the campaigns of Republican congressional incumbents, including Reps. Sean Duffy of Wisconsin and Jim Renacci of Ohio.
That allegation came from a lawsuit filed by a former staffer for Adelson, who claimed that Adelson personally sanctioned prostitution at one of his properties. The billionaire, who has given more than $40 million to GOP causes this year, denies the allegation. And PolitiFact rated it as “Pants on Fire.”
The law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison sent the DCCC a letter offering the threat. The letter, dated Monday, was signed by one of the firm's partners Lewis Clayton. It was sent to DCCC Press Secretary Jesse Ferguson.
“I write on behalf of this firm's client Sheldon Adelson to demand that you and the DCCC immediately retract and apologize for defamatory statements falsely accusing Mr. Adelson of encouraging and profiting from prostitution, maliciously branding Mr. Adelson as a pimp who has given ‘Chinese prostitution money’ to your political opponents,” the letter states.
“These false allegations constitute libel per se entitling Mr. Adelson to compensatory and punitive damages.”
The letter noted Adelson’s opposition to prostitution. “Mr. Adelson does not tolerate prostitution, let alone, as you have said, make money from it. The fact is that Mr. Adelson has consistently objected to and maintained a strong policy against prostitution, a commitment that extends to his personal life.”
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