The Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency was reportedly secretly recorded by an employee who is now accusing him of making sexual advances towards her.
Simone Grimes has accused Watt of sexual harassment, retaliation and pay discrimination, claiming he leveraged his ability to advance her career as he discussed his attraction to her.
"I'm guilty of having an at traction to you, that is true," Watt said on the tape obtained by NPR. "So it makes me more conscious not to leave some impression."
Grimes this week filed a lawsuit against FHFA , alleging it violated the Equal Pay Act as she worked two jobs simultaneously for less money than her male coworkers. She also filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in May, NPR reported.
The FHFA oversees mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
Grimes told NPR that Watts began coming on to her when she needed his signature for a pay raise in 2015.
"That's kind of when Director Watt began his advances," she told NPR. "So he approached me at a few functions that were at work to say he believed there was an attraction between us that needed to be explored."
Grimes said she was being paid 70 cents per dollar compared to her predecessor.
She said she began recording her conversations with Watt in 2016, and that in November 2016 he insisted she meet him at his house, where she secretly used her cellphone to record a conversation with him.
During the meeting, Watt told her he could advance her career.
"Is it better to go through a charade process to get you the job, or is it better for me to just give you the job, because I don't have to go through a bid process, I don't have to go through an application process," Watt is recorded saying, according to NPR.
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