×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Grilled Over Interest in Wife’s Production Company

WASHINGTON — Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was asked in a Senate hearing about a continued potential interest in Stormchaser Films, the production company founded by his wife, Louise Linton.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, said at a hearing on Thursday that the concern is that “there has been an exchange of an asset for a loan instead of a divestment.” He was citing a report from the Center for Public Integrity that Mnuchin sold his interest in Stormchaser Partners for between $1 million and $2 million in May 2017, but his latest financial disclosure showed that he is still owed around that same amount from the production company.

Wyden also told Mnuchin that he was “trying to make sense of your 2017 uncertified ethics form, and the government has been not able to certify it yet.”

But Mnuchin, who was a prolific film financier before being confirmed as treasury secretary in 2017, said he had gotten clearance from an ethics official in the Treasury Department.

“My forms were filed timely and they were certified by the career-designated ethics official in Treasury, who is the person I consult with on a regular basis,” Mnuchin told the committee.

But a separate entity in the executive branch, the Office of Government Ethics, has not yet certified Mnuchin’s disclosure of his 2017 personal finances. As he was facing confirmation, Mnuchin agreed to divest his industry holdings, including his stake in RatPac-Dune Entertainment, which helped finance a long list of Warner Bros. titles, including “Lego Batman,” “Suicide Squad,” and “Wonder Woman.”

According to its website, Stormchaser was founded in 2012 as an all-female company, and its projects have included “The Midnight Man,” “6 Below,” and “Intruder.” The action comedy “Me, You, Madness” is in production, and is written and directed by Linton, who also stars.

Mnuchin said the Treasury Department is working with the Office of Government Ethics on finalizing their certification.

“I have been advised by people in Treasury that I am fully in compliance and I have no ethical issue,” he said.

Popular on Variety

More Politics

  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Burning Image Debate Ad

    ABC Runs Debate Ad Showing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Burning Image

    ABC aired an ad during Thursday’s Democratic debate that depicted a burning image of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and likened her politics to those that caused the Cambodian genocide. New Faces GOP funded the ad, which features Elizabeth Heng, a Republican who lost a bid for a Fresno-area congressional seat last year. Ocasio-Cortez responded on Twitter, [...]

  • Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris.

    ABC News' Democratic Debate Lacked Energy and Purpose

    At long last, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Elizabeth Warren were on the same stage. And the result was a long and fairly dull evening. After two Democratic Party debate stages in which the field of candidates had been bifurcated — splitting, in both cases, the perceived frontrunners from the establishment and insurgent [...]

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden responds

    Protesters Interrupt Joe Biden During Democratic Debate

    Protesters interrupted presidential candidate Joe Biden during Thursday’s democratic debate. The chants came nearly two and a half hours in as moderator George Stephanopoulos asked the former vice president about any professional setbacks he’s faced and how he recovered from them. “We’re going to clear the protesters,” Stephanopoulos said as the chants began. “We’re sorry.” [...]

  • Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren,

    Dems Debate in Houston: Moderates Push Back on Medicare for All

    The third Democratic debate on Thursday was billed as the first showdown between the top contenders: Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders. Biden did challenge the liberal senators on health care early in the debate, which was broadcast on ABC. He asked repeatedly how they would pay for their multi-trillion [...]

  • Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth WarrenSecond 2020

    How to Watch the Third Democratic Primary Debate

    The leading Democratic candidates will once again go head to head tonight in Houston, Tex. for the party’s third debate ahead of the primaries. The anticipated debate, which will include the 10 Democratic candidates currently leading in the polls, will kick off at 8 p.m. ET and will broadcast live on ABC and Univision. ABC [...]

  • Gen Z Climate Activism

    How Generation Z Is Embracing Bold Action in the Face of Climate Crisis

    Of all the dire forecasts she’s heard about the climate crisis, there is one that Arielle Martinez Cohen can’t get out of her mind. The report, from an Australian think tank, projected that if nothing is done, civilization could collapse by 2050. “I will be 49 in that year,” says the 17-year-old activist. “It makes [...]

  • Edward Norton Climate Change

    'Vote the Environment': Edward Norton on How to Be an Effective Climate Activist

    Edward Norton found activism at an early age. He also directs and stars in detective story “Motherless Brooklyn,” opening Nov. 1. Variety caught up with him as he prepared to hit the festival circuit with the adaptation of the Jonathan Lethem novel. Where did your interest in environmental issues spring from? All of the roots [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content