Unraveling Disaster: What’s Next for Biden After Federal Sex Scandal Fallout


A 234-page legal report from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton reveals widespread sexual harassment at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. The report was commissioned in response to a Wall Street Journal article from 2023. It found that close to 1/10 of employees (500) reported sexual harassment, racism, and other interpersonal misconduct. As President Joe Biden struggles with low poll numbers, the scandal could continue to impact him. Mark R. Weaver, a Republican strategist, criticized Biden for his actions. He said that Biden hid behind his Press Secretary, who had forgotten his promise to fire anyone acting in such a way.

Democrats’ opposition to former President Donald Trump’s proposal to cut federal bureaucracy by sweeping amounts further complicates the issue of union protections. The report detailed how the FDIC dealt with reports of discrimination and harassment, and how it administered discipline. The disciplinary process for unionized workers is different. Warning or counseling letters cannot be used to prove progressive discipline. They are usually removed from the employee’s file within one year of their issue date, unless there is a legitimate administrative reason.

Lisa Bloom, a lawyer who specializes in sexual harassment, expressed her dismay over the way the union protected potential bad actors at the FDIC. She said that those who commit sexual harassment and those who cover it up should both be fired. The report also highlighted internal dysfunction within the FDIC that appears to be caused by multiple factors. Maxford Nelsen is the Director of Research and Government Affairs at the Freedom Foundation. He said that the federal collective bargaining laws and the unions that represent FDIC employees play a part in shielding bad actors and preventing them from being held accountable.

The FDIC report puts President Joe Biden in a difficult position, given his support for the #MeToo movement and pro-union stance. Biden supported a law that prohibited confidential agreements being used to prevent individuals from speaking out about workplace sexual harassment. He also signed a bill that banned the use of such agreements to stop people from reporting it. The report found that there were also instances of discrimination, and fear of harassment by higher-ups, when complaints were made. Biden’s wealth, and his association with people in management and finance, shows bias toward those in power. This is evident in Biden’s attitude towards an agency which should treat workers better regardless of whether they are unionized or not.

As evidence of his bias against those in power, the president’s promise to fire anyone who disrespected colleagues was cited. Karine Jean-Pierre, White House Press Secretary, had no prepared remarks to make during a press briefing on May 14, when asked by a reporter about the president’s plan to fire people “on the spot.” Five months after the presidential election, Biden is still trying to overcome polls that show him behind Trump in key swing states. Biden could face more trouble due to the timing of the FDIC’s report. As more incidents are reported and more cases occur, the media will be more likely to cover them negatively.