Freedom Fund Demands Gretchen Whitmer Apologize, Return $3,400 Check from Accused Sexual Harasser 

Whitmer Campaign Profits from Victimizer as Sexual Harassment Scandals Engulf Her Party


LANSING, MI, December 8, 2017 –The Michigan Freedom Fund today demanded that Gretchen Whitmer return a $3,400 contribution to her campaign from Brian Banks, the disgraced former state Representative who was forced to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit brought by a former state employee.  Banks resigned earlier this year as part of a plea deal to avoid prison time in connection with unrelated felony charges.

Whitmer accepted the $3,400 contribution from Banks on April 1, 2017, months after his resignation from the state House, and more than a year after Banks settled a lawsuit brought by a former employee who alleged he was fired for refusing the lawmaker’s sexual advances – after Banks sexually molested him in a Lansing hotel room.  The lawsuit left Michigan taxpayers on the hook for nearly $100,000 in legal fees and settlement costs.

 Source: Michigan Campaign Finance Records, Accessed December 7, 2017

“Gretchen Whitmer’s silence has created a party where women and Democratic staffers aren’t safe, but their attackers are,” asked Terri Reid, President of the Michigan Freedom Fund.  “Instead of standing up for the victims of sexual violence and harassment, Whitmer is cashing campaign checks from their attackers.  She should be ashamed, she should denounce her friends’ disgusting behavior, and she should return Brian Banks’s check immediately.”

On Tuesday, former Congressman John Conyers resigned amid a flurry of sexual harassment allegations brought by former staff members.  Whitmer similarly refused to call for Conyers’ resignation or to stand up for the many women he is alleged to have victimized. 

Michigan Freedom Fund is a nonprofit organization run by Michiganders for Michiganders, working to advance, promote, and protect Michigan workers’ Constitutional rights. For more information on the Freedom Fund, please visit