Saturday, February 26, 2005


Conservative columnist who took $240k from Bush criticized NAACP for sexual harassment and economic “improprieties” after settling his own sexual harassment suit

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Armstrong Williams lashed out at NAACP for sex harassment after settling harassment suit himself

By John Byrne RAW STORY Editor

The conservative columnist who was fired after accepting $240,000 to promote Bush’s ‘No Child Left Behind’ law rebuked the NAACP for “charges of sexual harassment and economic improprieties” after settling a sexual harassment suit himself, RAW STORY has learned.
Just last month, in an article discussing Kweisi Mfume’s resignation from the nation’s largest civil rights lobby, Williams said the NAACP was “foundering amidst charges of sexual harassment and economic improprieties” when Mfume was hired.

Mfume, he asserted, righted the ship–cleaning up the organization’s debt and concurrently issuing overtures to Republicans. But their veteran leader, Julian Bond, who in Williams’ piece was equated with an organization plagued by harassment, economic scandal and stridently anti-Bush messages–forced him out.

Williams, RAW STORY has discovered, settled accounts for the same misdeeds himself.
In 1997, Williams was sued in a massive $200,000 50-charge sexual harassment suit for repeatedly kissing his once male trainer Stephen Gregory who he had promoted repeatedly into his talk-show staff. Gregory claimed Williams had also grabbed his buttocks and genitals and climbed into bed with him on business trips. After rebuffing him, Gregory alleged, the pundit retaliated by reducing his pay and subsequently firing him.

At the time, the Williams had just teased an explosive quote from then-Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott who said that gays should be treated like those who have a problem with “alcohol … or sex addiction … or kleptomaniacs.”

Williams roundly supported this view.

Gregory’s attorney, Mickey Wheatley, a former lawyer with the Lamda Legal Defense Fund, a gay civil rights group, told the San Francisco Chronicle he thought it “ironic for Trent Lott to be making these offensive pronouncements when he’s sitting across from somebody who’s been accused of the most abusive kind of conduct of a homosexual nature.'’

Wheatley added: Williams “believes that (homosexuality) to be a sin, and so he must be in great pain over it, but he’s inflicting pain on others with his pronouncements. The way he treated my client would be indicative of what happens when you try to repress something as basic about yourself as your sexuality. My advice to him would be to get a boyfriend and leave his employees alone.'’

Williams failed to get the suit dismissed in 1998. His once-trainer presented an affidavit from a man who claimed Armstrong propositioned him in 1996 and also had testimony from an ex-intern who said he had brushed off Williams’ advances his first day on the job.

“The whole thing is an attempt to embarrass and humiliate Mr. Williams,'’ his attorney, Peter Axelrad, told the Chronicle. “We deny it. We deny all of it. We have full confidence that my client will be vindicated.'’

The columnist settled the case out of court in early 1999.


Blogger J. Marquis said...

Sounds like Williams has been working on the No Behind Left Behind campaign.

3:45 PM  
Blogger Damien said...

LOL very classy J.

6:28 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

JM, you aren't a homophobe, are you? (I feel so leftist using such a term.)

Regardless of Williams, NAACP should lose it's tax exempt status. They have clearly engaged in partisan politics.

7:39 PM  
Blogger Snave said...

Good and well as that might be, I prefer to revel and wallow in the moment, which for me is the fact that Williams is not only a pundit getting paid big bucks by POTUS, but he's also been wearing the hypocrite suit when it comes to being gay (or bi, anyway.)

I'll think about the NAACP later, but for now I'll savor this business with Armstrong Williams. These things just don't come along for the left wing that often! 8-)>

7:57 PM  

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