Confessed

 

 

Joe Biden was doing great in that interview until he confessed.

"The Five" weighed in Friday on presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's response to allegations he sexually assaulted former staffer Tara Reade while serving in the Senate.

"I thought his tone was good. Mika was strong, but I don't know if he convinced anybody either way," co-host Jesse Watters said. "Voters are just gonna have to never know the truth and just factor this into their decision in November."

BIDEN DENIES SEXUAL ASSAULT ALLEGATION, IN HIS FIRST COMMENTS ON TARA READE'S CLAIMS

"He left himself vulnerable for sure. When [MSNBC's] Mika [Brzezinski] asked if he remembered Reade, he dodged," Watters added.

Watters also compared Biden's situation to the furor over sexual misconduct allegations against then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

"His [Biden's] obvious 'Kavanaugh standard' about 'Believe all women' has evolved. It's now 'Believe all women at first, and then investigate them,'" Watters said. "Now a lot of people would think, investigate and then believe. I'm not really sure what he [Biden] believes. I just think he knows he needs to say what he needs to say to get out of that question."

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Co-host Greg Gutfeld stated that Biden may have slipped up.

"Look, Biden was doing great in that interview until he confessed," Gutfeld said. "First he had the total denial. I think that was pretty good. The denial was pretty strong. And then he says as a complaint. 'You know, I don't know why all of a sudden 27 years 'this' gets raised.

"What is 'this?' What is 'this'? That's interesting," Gutfeld added.

 

foxnews.com

Joe  |  Hunter  |  Tara

Examining

 

 

Examining Tara Reade's Sexual Assault Allegation Against Joe Biden

Ms. Reade, a former Senate aide, has accused Mr. Biden of assaulting her in 1993 and says she told others about it. A Biden spokeswoman said the allegation is false, and former Senate office staff members do not recall such an incident.

A former Senate aide who last year accused Joseph R. Biden Jr. of inappropriate touching has made an allegation of sexual assault against the former vice president, the Democratic Party's presumptive presidential nominee this fall.

The former aide, Tara Reade, who briefly worked as a staff assistant in Mr. Biden's Senate office, told The New York Times that in 1993, Mr. Biden pinned her to a wall in a Senate building, reached under her clothing and penetrated her with his fingers. A friend said that Tara Reade told her the details of the allegation at the time. Another friend and a brother of Tara Reade's said she told them over the years about a traumatic sexual incident involving Mr. Biden.

A spokeswoman for Mr. Biden said the allegation was false. In interviews, several people who worked in the Senate office with Tara Reade said they did not recall any talk of such an incident or similar behavior by Mr. Biden toward her or any women. Two office interns who worked directly with Tara Reade said they were unaware of the allegation or any treatment that troubled her.

Last year, Tara Reade and seven other women came forward to accuse Mr. Biden of kissing, hugging or touching them in ways that made them feel uncomfortable. Ms. Reade told The Times then that Mr. Biden had publicly stroked her neck, wrapped his fingers in her hair and touched her in ways that made her uncomfortable.

Soon after Tara Reade made the new allegation, in a podcast interview released on March 25, The Times began reporting on her account and seeking corroboration through interviews, documents and other sources. The Times interviewed Ms. Reade on multiple days over hours, as well as those she told about Mr. Biden's behavior and other friends. The Times has also interviewed lawyers who spoke to Ms. Reade about her allegation; nearly two dozen people who worked with Mr. Biden during the early 1990s, including many who worked with Ms. Reade; and the other seven women who criticized Mr. Biden last year, to discuss their experiences with him.

No other allegation about sexual assault surfaced in the course of reporting, nor did any former Biden staff members corroborate any details of Ms. Reade's allegation. The Times found no pattern of sexual misconduct by Mr. Biden.

On Thursday, Tara Reade filed a report with the Washington, D.C., police, saying she was the victim of a sexual assault in 1993; the public incident report, provided to The Times by Ms. Reade and the police, does not mention Mr. Biden by name, but she said the complaint was about him. Tara Reade said she filed the report to give herself an additional degree of safety from potential threats. Filing a false police report may be punishable by a fine and imprisonment.

Tara Reade, who worked as a staff assistant helping manage the office interns, said Tara Reade also filed a complaint with the Senate in 1993 about Mr. Biden; she said she did not have a copy of it, and such paperwork has not been located. The Biden campaign said it did not have a complaint. The Times reviewed an official copy of her employment history from the Senate that she provided showing she was hired in December 1992 and paid by Mr. Biden's office until August 1993.

The seven other women who had complained about Mr. Biden told the Times this month that they did not have any new information about their experiences to add, but several said they believed Ms. Reade's account.

Last year, Mr. Biden, 77, acknowledged the women's complaints about his conduct, saying his intentions were benign and promising to be more mindful and respectful of people's personal space.

In response to Tara Reade's allegation, Kate Bedingfield, a deputy Biden campaign manager, said in a statement: Vice President Biden has dedicated his public life to changing the culture and the laws around violence against women. He authored and fought for the passage and reauthorization of the landmark Violence Against Women Act. He firmly believes that women have a right to be heard and heard respectfully. Such claims should also be diligently reviewed by an independent press. What is clear about this claim: It is untrue. This absolutely did not happen.

Tara Reade made her new allegation public as Mr. Biden was closing in on the Democratic presidential nomination after winning a string of primaries against his chief rival, Senator Bernie Sanders. Ms. Reade, who describes herself as a third-generation Democrat, said she originally favored Marianne Williamson and Senator Elizabeth Warren in the race but voted for Mr. Sanders in the California primary last month. She said her decision to come forward had nothing to do with politics or helping Mr. Sanders, and said neither his campaign nor the Trump campaign had encouraged her to make her allegation.

Ms. Reade's account

Tara Reade, 56, told The Times that the assault happened in the spring of 1993. She said she had tracked down Mr. Biden to deliver an athletic bag when he pushed her against a cold wall, started kissing her neck and hair and propositioned her. He slid his hand up her cream-colored blouse, she said, and used his knee to part her bare legs before reaching under her skirt.

It happened at once. He's talking to me and his hands are everywhere and everything is happening very quickly, she recalled. He was kissing me and he said, very low, Do you want to go somewhere else?

Tara Reade said she pulled away and Mr. Biden stopped.

He looked at me kind of almost puzzled or shocked, she said. He said, Come on, man, I heard you liked me.

At the time, Tara Reade said she worried whether she had done something wrong to encourage his advances.

He pointed his finger at me and he just goes: You're nothing to me. Nothing, she said. Then, he took my shoulders and said, You're OK, you're fine.

Mr. Biden walked down the hallway, Tara Reade said, and she cleaned up in a restroom, made her way home and, sobbing, called her mother, who encouraged her to immediately file a police report.

Instead, Tara Reade said, she complained to Marianne Baker, Mr. Biden's executive assistant, as well as to two top aides, Dennis Toner and Ted Kaufman, about harassment by Mr. Biden not mentioning the alleged assault.

The staff declined to take action, Tara Reade said, after which she filed a written complaint with a Senate personnel office. She said office staff took away most of her duties, including supervising the interns; assigned her a windowless office; and made the work environment uncomfortable for her.

She said Mr. Kaufman later told her she was not a good fit in the office, giving her a month to look for a job. Tara Reade never secured another position in Washington.

In an interview, Mr. Kaufman, a longtime friend of Mr. Biden's who was his chief of staff at the time, said: I did not know her. She did not come to me. If she had, I would have remembered her.

Mr. Toner, who worked for Mr. Biden for over three decades, said the allegation was out of character for Mr. Biden. Other senators and office staffs had reputations for harassing women at work and partying after hours, according to those who worked in the office at the time. Mr. Biden was known for racing to catch the train to get home to Wilmington, Del., every night.

It's just so preposterous that Senator Biden would be faced with these allegations, said Mr. Toner, who was deputy chief of staff when Ms. Reade worked in the office. I don't remember her. I don't remember this conversation. And I would remember this conversation.

The Biden campaign issued a statement from Ms. Baker, Mr. Biden's executive assistant from 1982 to 2000.

I never once witnessed, or heard of, or received, any reports of inappropriate conduct, period not from Tara Reade, not from anyone, she said. 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.

Melissa Lefko, a former staff assistant for Mr. Biden from 1992 to 1993, said she did not remember Tara Reade. But she recalled that Mr. Biden's office was a very supportive environment for women and said she had never experienced any kind of harassment there.

When you work on the Hill, everyone knows who the good guys are and who the bad guys are, and Biden was a good guy, she said.

Tara Reade said that she could not remember the exact time, date or location of the assault but that it occurred in a semiprivate place in the Senate office complex.

A friend said that Tara Reade told her about the alleged assault at the time, in 1993. A second friend recalled Ms. Reade telling her in 2008 that Mr. Biden had touched her inappropriately and that she'd had a traumatic experience while working in his office. Both friends agreed to speak to The Times on the condition of anonymity to protect the privacy of their families and their self-owned businesses.

Tara Reade said she also told her brother, who has confirmed parts of her account publicly but who did not speak to The Times, and her mother, who has since died.

Differing recollections

At the time of the alleged assault, Ms. Reade said she was responsible for coordinating the interns in the office. Two former interns who worked with her said they never heard her describe any inappropriate conduct by Mr. Biden or saw her directly interact with him in any capacity but recalled that she abruptly stopped supervising them in April, before the end of their internship. Others who worked in the office at the time said they remembered Tara Reade but not any inappropriate behavior.

Friends and former co-workers describe Ms. Reade as friendly, caring, compassionate and trustworthy, though perhaps a bit naive. A single mother, she changed her name for protection after leaving an abusive marriage in the late 1990s and put herself through law school in Seattle. After leaving Mr. Biden's office, she eventually returned to the West Coast, where she worked for a state senator; as an advocate for domestic violence survivors, testifying as an expert witness in court; and for animal rescue organizations.

During her time in Mr. Biden's office, he was working to pass the Violence Against Women Act, which Mr. Biden has described as his proudest legislative accomplishment. In 2017, Tara Reade retweeted praise for Mr. Biden and his work combating sexual assault. In more recent months, her feed has featured support for Mr. Sanders and criticism of Mr. Biden.

Tara Reade said she did not disclose the sexual assault allegation last year when she spoke out because she was scared. After her initial complaints were reported last year by a local California newspaper, Ms. Reade said she faced a wave of criticism and death threats, as well as accusations that she was a Russian agent because of Medium posts and tweets, several of which are now deleted, she had written praising President Vladimir Putin.

Tara Reade said that she was not working for Russia and did not support Mr. Putin, and that her comments were pulled out of context from a novel she was writing at the time.

It was trying to smear me and distract from what happened, but it won't change the facts of what happened in 1993, she said.

She called her praise for Mr. Putin misguided.

Tara Reade tried to get legal and public relations support from the Time's Up Legal Defense Fund, an initiative established by prominent women in Hollywood to fight sexual harassment. Her outreach to the group was first reported by The Intercept.

As it has for thousands of people who have contacted the group, the Time's Up Legal Defense Fund, which does not represent clients, gave her a list of lawyers with expertise in such cases. She said she contacted every single one but none took her case. Two lawyers confirmed speaking to Ms. Reade but declined to comment on the record about her or the allegation.

The political consulting firm where Mr. Biden's chief strategist, Anita Dunn, works as a managing director, has a contract with the Time's Up legal defense fund. Ms. Dunn has never worked with the fund and her firm was not told of Ms. Reade's request, according to officials at the fund.

Ms. Reade also contacted at least one of the women who spoke out along with her last year about Mr. Biden's penchant for physical contact.

Lucy Flores, a former Nevada state assemblywoman who accused Mr. Biden of making her uncomfortable by kissing and touching her during a 2014 campaign event, exchanged a few emails last year with Tara Reade but said Ms. Reade did not share her full story.

Biden is not just a hugger, Ms. Flores said. Biden very clearly was invading women's spaces without their consent in a way that made them feel uncomfortable. Does he potentially have the capacity to go beyond that? That's the answer everyone is trying to get at.

 

nytimes.com

 

Joe  |  Hunter  |  Tara

Hypocrisy

 

 

The Hypocrisy on Tara Reade Is a National Disgrace.

We do not know whether the accusations that Tara Reade has leveled against Joe Biden are true or false. That is a question of evidence and of inquiry that might be answered as time rolls on. We do know, by contrast, that the double standard that has been exhibited by Baden's campaign and by the political press in tandem is a national disgrace. Both culturally and legally, due process must be habitually applied to nobody or to everyone. If, upon the most frivolous and protean of pretexts, it is routinely accorded to one faction while being denied to another, it is effectively lost.

Though he has not deigned to address it directly, Joe Biden insists that he is innocent of the charge that he digitally penetrated an intern back in 1993. It is untrue, his communications director says. This absolutely did not happen. If so, we hope that this incident has taught Biden that his previous approach toward accusations of sexual assault was dangerous, illiberal, and ultimately untenable. During the summer of 2018, with Brett Kavanaugh under the national spotlight, Biden was unequivocal in his demand that Americans must believe women as a matter of unwavering reflex. For a woman to come forward in the glaring lights of focus, nationally, Biden argued, you've got to start off with the presumption that at least the essence of what she's talking about is real, whether or not she forgets facts, whether or not it's been made worse or better over time.

Biden took a similar line when, as Barack Obama's vice president, he was tasked with overhauling the manner in which sexual assault cases were evaluated on college campuses. Per the Chronicle of Higher Education, the sweeping Title IX changes that have transformed higher education would not have happened without Biden's support. By transformed, the Chronicle and means that Biden was responsible for lowering the standard of evidence so drastically and expanding the definition of sexual misconduct so dramatically that accused students were left with no realistic chance of clearing their names. Summing up the approach he had taken toward Title IX in a 2017 conversation, Biden put it simply: I believe you. Why, we must ask, should his own accuser not be granted the same privilege?

Similar questions must be posed to the media, which have displayed an extraordinary and unjustifiable double standard in this case, and which, despite the best attempts of the em New York Times editor Dean Baquet, have failed spectacularly to account for it. Two years ago, when Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was accused of teenage sexual misconduct, the press focused breathlessly on the charges, reporting without caveat anything that came across the transom. Nothing was too ridiculous to repeat including the claim that Justice Kavanaugh had been involved in a gang-rape ring and what little hard evidence was available was willfully supplemented by wisely opinion pieces in which it was insinuated that the experiences of other people confirmed the specific accusations against Kavanaugh himself. Worse still were the presumptions that undergirded the media's focus. For some writers, the mere fact that Kavanaugh had been accused was sufficient to tank his nomination, given the cloud that it would allegedly create around his tenure. For others, the vehemence of his denial was an indication of his guilt and unsuitability. Yet more took the view that there was no need to presume innocence at all, because Kavanaugh was engaged not in a criminal trial but in a job interview. The affair represented a nadir of American journalism.

Given that the evidence is stronger in this case than it was in Kavanaugh's we know, at least, that the accuser and accused have met we must ask why the same rules are not being applied in this instance. Joe Biden is hoping to be president of the United States. Might not a cloud follow him around, too? Biden has not only denied the charges categorically, but he has demanded that the press diligently review and rigorously vet them. What, when compared to his I believe you mantra, should this tell us about his character? Is a presidential election not a job interview, too? And if, as was the case in 2018, the venue of the alleged assault tells us a great deal about the likelihood of its veracity, might we expect to read a slate of pieces outlining what it was like to be a female intern in the Senate in the early 1990s?

We are of the same view today as we were in 2018, and as we were before that. We believe that sexual assault is a hideous crime and that we should punish only people who are guilty of it. It is monstrous when the perpetrators of evil get away with their acts. But it is also monstrous when the innocent lose their good names. Our preference for due process derives from a desire to avoid either outcome.

More practically, we believe that our political system itself benefits strongly from the presumption of innocence. If the mere introduction of an accusation is sufficient to prompt a candidate's withdrawal, the incentives for false charges will grow legion. Joe Biden is a hypocrite and an opportunist, but that is no reason to treat him any differently than we would treat anybody else. If he has truly changed his mind on this most important of questions, we welcome him into the fold. As Biden now argues, Tara Reade's accusations should be respectfully heard and rigorously vetted. And, if the evidence does not rise to the level, the man at whom they are aimed should be assumed not guilty. But we will not get to that point with one side throwing a blanket over the story and muttering, well, this time he's one of ours.

 

nationalreview.com

Joe  |  Hunter  |  Tara

Who Is

 

 

Who is Tara Reade and what are her allegations against Joe Biden?

On Friday, the former vice-president Joe Biden flatly denied an accusation from Tara Reade, a former staffer, that he sexually assaulted her in 1993, when he was a senator from Delaware.

Here is what you need to know about Reade's allegation and Biden's response:

Who is Tara Reade?

A former aide to Biden from his years in the Senate, Reade, now 56, says that in 1993, in a corridor in a Senate office building, he pushed her against a wall and assaulted her, penetrating her with his fingers.

According to the New York Times, a friend of Reade said she described an incident at the time, involving Biden. Two more people, another friend and Reade's brother, have said she mentioned a traumatic sexual incident involving Biden.

Reade has said she went to top Biden aides in the Senate office to report being harassed by the senator but did not mention the alleged assault. Reade says the aides did not take action and she filed a formal complaint with the Senate personnel office.

In 2019, Reade and seven other women publicly accused Biden of gestures that made them uncomfortable, included unwanted touching or kissing. Reade first made the allegation of assault in a podcast episode in March.

What has Biden said?

Biden and spokespeople for the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee have flatly denied the claim. On Friday, in a Medium post, Biden said the allegations aren't true. This never happened.

Biden said that although Reade says she went to top staffers in his Senate office, none of them have confirmed that she did so.

Reade said she does not have a copy of the complaint she filed in 1993. In his Medium post, Biden said the only place where there could be a record of the complaint would be with the National Archives Office of Fair Employment Practices. He wants the secretary of the Senate to ask the archives to find any record of the complaint Reade says she filed.

On Saturday, the National Archives told reporters it did not hold such records, which would be held by the Senate.

Biden has also faced questions about his Senate papers which are held, without being open to the public, at the University of Delaware. He has said any such complaint would not be kept there.

What are Republicans and the Trump campaign saying?

Donald Trump has said he thinks Biden should respond to the allegations. On Saturday he compared his own situation he has been accused of sexual misconduct or assault by numerous women, claims he denies with Biden's.

Spokespeople for the National Republican Congressional Committee have publicly questioned whether Democrats who back Biden believe Reade or will call for Biden to take further steps.

On Saturday, the Trump campaign accused senior Democrats of a double standard, comparing their defense of Biden with their approach to a sexual assault claim against Trump supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in late 2018.

What have prominent Democrats said?

Democratic-aligned women's groups have moved slowly. But before Biden's statement and interview on Friday, they began urging him to address the allegation head-on.

The House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, the highest ranking Democrat in Congress, said she was satisfied with Biden's response. She also said the allegations would be taken seriously.

Former Georgia house minority leader Stacey Abrams, a potential running mate for Biden, said in an interview with CNN that women deserve to be heard and I believe they need to be listened to, but I also believe that those allegations have to be investigated by credible sources.

She also said: The New York Times did a deep investigation and they found that the accusation was not credible. I believe Joe Biden.

The Times has not said the accusation was not credible. It said it made no conclusion either way.

 

 

theguardian.com

Joe  |  Hunter  |  Tara