May 8th, 2008
Clinton supporter pressures Pelosi over White House battle
WASHINGTON — In a heated phone call with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi late last month, Hillary Clinton supporter Harvey Weinstein threatened to cut off campaign money to congressional Democrats unless Pelosi embraced a new plan by the movie mogul to finance a revote of the Democratic presidential primaries in Florida and Michigan, according to three officials who were briefed on the contents of the conversation.
The three officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk publicly about the private phone conversation, said Weinstein, a top supporter of Clinton’s presidential campaign, appeared determined to buy Clinton more time in her battle against Sen. Barack Obama by pushing for the revote and pressing Pelosi to back off her previous comments that superdelegates should support the candidate who’s leading in pledged delegates in early June.
Weinstein, a co-founder of Miramax Films who now runs the Weinstein Company, called CNN Thursday to vehemently deny that he issued any threats. “Never, ever was the thought about denying funding to Democrats,” he said.
Weinstein said the phone call focused on his offer to put together a team of people to help finance a revote in Florida and Michigan. “I told her people felt there would be a disenfranchisement of voters” unless Democrats came up with a remedy, he said.
–By CNN White House Correspondent Ed Henry