MEL WATT: ‘I’m guilty of having an attraction to you, that is true…’
(Michael Barnes, Liberty Headlines) On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hear testimony from Christine Blasey Ford and President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh.
Ford has accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her in 1982 at a high school party, although she’s offered no evidence to support the allegation.
The same day, the House Financial Services Committee will hear testimony from a Federal Housing Finance Agency employee who has accused former Rep. Mel Watt, a North Carolina Democrat and the agency’s current director, of sexual harassment.
But Watt’s accuser, Simone Grimes, has plenty of evidence to bear.
Grimes secretly recorded conversations with Watt that not only bolster her harassment accusations, but also purport to show equal-pay violations and workplace retaliation.
In 2015, Grimes was working both her regular FHFA job and another job that she had been promoted to. Except, the promotion wasn’t finalized and she never got the requisite pay increase.
The hold-up fell squarely on Watt, as the promotion required his approval.
“That’s kind of when director Watt began his advances,” Grimes says. “So he approached me at a few functions that were at work to say he believed there was an attraction between us that needed to be explored.”
Watt is one of the few top holdovers left in the federal government from the Obama administration. Grimes says secret recordings on her cell phone show her pay raise hinged on a “relationship” with him.
On one occasion, Grimes recorded Watt after reluctantly meeting him at his house.
“I’m guilty of having an attraction to you, that is true,” Watt says in a recording.
“Is it better to go through a charade process to get you the job, or is it better for me to just give you the job? Because I don’t have to go through a bid process, I don’t have to go through an application process,” Watt says.
In her complaint, Grimes said that she still reports to the same people she’s accusing of mistreatment and that they have retaliated against her.
In July, Watt issued a statement saying he had not “done anything contrary to law.”