Texas Rep. Blake Farenthold (R) used taxpayer dollars to help settle a sexual harassment suit according to his former spokesman.
According to Politico, Farenthold’s former communications director Lauren Greene sued the congressman in 2014 over gender discrimination, sexual harassment and creating a hostile work environment:
“Farenthold regularly drank to excess, and because of his tendency to flirt, the staffers who accompanied him to Capitol Hill functions would joke that they had to be on ‘red head patrol to keep him out of trouble,’” Greene’s complaint alleged. “On one occasion, prior to February 2014, during a staff meeting at which [Greene] was in attendance, Farenthold disclosed that a female lobbyist had propositioned him for a ‘threesome.’”
The complaint added: “On June 10, 2014, in response to Haueter’s complaint about [Greene’s] shirt … which Haueter claimed was transparent and showed [Greene’s] nipples, Farenthold told [another woman staffer] that [Greene] could show her nipples whenever she wanted to,” Greene’s complaint asserted.
Greene claims she was “improperly fired” by the congressman after she had complained about her treatment. She filed a lawsuit in a D.C. District Court, but a private settlement caused the case to be dropped.
According to House Administration Committee Chairman Gregg Harper (R-Miss.), the Office of Compliance account had only been used once in the last five years to settle a sexual harassment complaint, and that settlement totaled $84,000.
CBS News reported that Farenthold has refused to confirm or deny that Greene was the recipient of the settlement, and issued a statement.
MORE: Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, says in statement that he can neither confirm nor deny 2014 sexual harassment settlement involved his office pic.twitter.com/FjGbKTGRCF
— CBS News (@CBSNews) December 1, 2017
Politico reported that likewise, Greene’s lawyer, Les Alderman of Alderman, Devorsetz & Hora PLLC, also would not confirm whether or not his client has received the settlement payout.