Sen. Whitehouse Denies Membership To an All-White Beach Club By Saying He's a Member of a Sailing Club That 'Lacks Diversity'

Brittany M. Hughes | June 24, 2021
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Democrat Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse pushed back this week against allegations that he’s a member of an elite all-white beach club in Rhode Island by saying he’s actually a member of an all-white sailing club.

Which, apparently, is somehow…better?

Whitehouse came under fire this week for defending the Spouting Rock Beach Association, a swanky 500-member club in Newport that allegedly boasts a membership list whiter than the blow on Hunter Biden's coffee table. When asked why he still belongs to the club despite its overt racist policies, Whitehouse told a reporter that it’s simply a “long tradition” in Rhode Island.

“I think the people who are running the place are still working on that and I’m sorry it hasn't happened yet,” Whitehouse said at the time, adding that “it would be nice if they changed a little bit.”

Whitehouse, who’s got a history of supporting left-wing social justice efforts in Congress, has since denied being a member of the club himself, but admitted his wife owns shares there and that he has other family members who attend.

“There have been calls for me to resign from the club, which I understand. However, I have no membership to resign, nor will I ask my wife or any other family members to do so," Whitehouse said in a statement. "First, they are on the right side of pushing for improvements. Second, and more importantly, my relationship with my family is not one in which I tell them what to do."

Bailey’s Beach Club has since denied having an all-white membership policy, claiming that their rolls include “people of many racial, religious, and ethnic backgrounds.” However, WPRI reports that “The club provided no statistics or other data showing the number of non-white members who belong” and declined to comment further.

But while he might not be a current member of an all-white beach club, Whitehouse did admitted to being a member of a predominantly, if not all, white sailing club.

"While I am not a member of the beach club, I do own a boat and belong to a sailing club in Newport," he said in his statement. "While this club does not have exclusionary rules for membership, it does lack diversity. Failing to address the sailing club’s lack of diversity is squarely on me, and something for which I am sorry.”

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