Former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign is strongly denying allegations he sexually assaulted a former female staffer — and is asking the media to “rigorously vet” his accuser.
This week, Tara Reade, a staff assistant for Biden when he was in the Senate, accused the presumptive Democratic nominee of sexually assaulting her while the two were alone in 1993.
His campaign responded aggressively to the allegations.
“We encourage them to do so, because these accusations are false,” Bedingfield said.
After the allegation went public this week, Twitter users unearthed a video of Biden explaining why women have a difficult time reporting cases of rape and sexual assault.
— Mattie Washburn (@MattieWashburn) March 26, 2020
“What should happen is the woman should be given the benefit of the doubt and not be, you know, abused again by the system,” Biden said of Ford’s testimony during the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings.
He also said that “some of the questions she was asked and the way the right went after her on national television and question her integrity and question her, not just her honesty, questioned her behavior. I mean, that’s just not appropriate. You shouldn’t have to be twice put through the same exact thing.”
Reade worked for Biden from 1992 to 1993, and said during a recent podcast that Biden had kissed, groped and penetrated her during an unwanted sexual advance more than 25 years ago.
In her interview, Reade said she had run a gym bag to Biden when he forced himself on her.
“We were alone and it was the strangest thing,” she said. “There was no, like, exchange really. He just had me up against the wall.”
“He went down my skirt but then up inside it and he penetrated me with his fingers.”
Reade also told Halper that Biden began kissing her and then said, “‘Do you want to go somewhere else?’”
“And then him saying to me when I pulled away, he got finished doing what he was doing, and I kind of just pulled back and he said, ‘Come on, man, I heard you liked me.'”
“He just looked at me, he goes, ‘You’re nothing. Nothing,” she said.
Reade said she did not tell her story of alleged sexual assault until this year because she faced a campaign of intimidation after accusing Biden of sexual harassment last year.
The woman had previously told the northern California newspaper The Union in April 2019 that Biden inappropriately touched her on more than one occasion during her tenure as a Senate staffer.
“He used to put his hand on my shoulder and run his finger up my neck,” Reade told The Union. “I would just kind of freeze and wait for him to stop doing that.”
Marianne Baker, a former executive assistant to Biden when he was a senator, is defending her former boss against Reade’s allegations.
“In all my years working for Senator Biden, I never once witnessed, or heard of, or received, any reports of inappropriate conduct, period — not from Ms. Reade, not from anyone,” Baker told Fox News.
“I have absolutely no knowledge or memory of Ms. Reade’s accounting of events, which would have left a searing impression on me as a woman professional, and as a manager,” she said.
Baker went on to describe Reade’s allegations as “false.”
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