Yesterday, The New York Times reported that The Lincoln Project (Republican anti-Trump group) co-founder, John Weaver, 61, has been accused by 21 young men of unsolicited online sexual messages over the years. One was only 14-years-old when Weaver first sent him messages, asking the boy about his body. The questions became more pointed after the boy turned 18.
Although none of the young men consider what Walker did to be illegal, "many of them described feeling preyed upon by an influential older man in the field in which they wanted to work, and believing they had to engage with his repeated messaging or lose a professional opportunity," according to The New York Times.
Mr. Weaver sent overt sexual solicitations to at least 10 of the men and, in the most explicit messages, offered professional and personal assistance in exchange for sex. He told one man he would "spoil you when we see each other," according to a message reviewed by The New York Times. "Help you other times. Give advice, counsel, help with bills. You help me … sensually."
Interviews with the 21 young men, as well as a review of screenshots of dozens of messages he sent them over the last five years, show that his online behavior was in many cases aggressive and unwanted.
Cole Trickle Miele was 14 when he followed Mr. Weaver on Twitter in 2015 and quickly received a direct message from him. At first, he did not think anything was amiss.
"I remember being a 14-year-old kid interested in politics and being semi-starstruck by John Weaver engaging in a conversation with me," said Mr. Trickle Miele, now 19. At the time, he supported the Republican Party and was a fan of Mr. Kasich, the Ohio governor whom Mr. Weaver was helping prepare to join the presidential race.
But as the messages kept coming, he became uncomfortable.
The Lincoln Project put out a statement, calling Weaver "a predator, a liar, and an abuser," and said they are "absolutely shocked and sickened by it."