Joe Biden’s presidential campaign has announced it is returning a $2,800 donation made by comedian and actor Louis C.K., who openly admitted to sexual misconduct in November 2017. According to Time magazine, C.K. made a donation to the Biden campaign on March 4 after the candidate won more than a dozen Super Tuesday ballots. A Biden campaign spokesman confirmed with Time that C.K.’s donation has since been refunded.
C.K. was accused of sexual misconduct by five women in a report published by The New York Times in November 2017. The women, many of them fellow comedians, said C.K. openly masturbated in front of them or requested to do. The comedian said in a statement the allegations made against him were true and that he was “remorseful” over his actions. C.K. quickly lost his development deal with FX Networks and the distribution deal for his feature film “I Love You, Daddy” as a result.
Over the last couple years, C.K. has slowly gotten back to performing on the stand-up comedy circuit and launched an official comeback tour that started last fall. The comedian said he has lost up to $35 million since admitting to sexual misconduct. C.K.’s return has been criticized by many in the industry, most recently by ex-girlfriend and musician Fiona Apple.
“The fact that he’s complaining about the money he lost, and that tired joke of, ‘Hey, how’s everybody’s 2020? Did everybody have a great year?’ That was a bad joke when it was done the first time, but it’s not even a joke,” Apple told Vulture this month. “The one thing I will say about that situation is that the women he harassed continue to be harassed by his little bros. By the little Louis bros. Fuck you, Louis bros. And fuck him for not even just acknowledging that. And for the record, he didn’t apologize.”
The C.K. donation is the first one the Biden campaign has so publicly refused to accept. The Biden campaign spokesman told Time magazine the donation return “will be reflected in the campaign’s next report filed in May.” Biden is the presumed Democratic nominee for president and is expected to face off against President Donald Trump in November’s 2020 election.