Tara Reade worked on Joe Biden’s Senate staff in the early 1990s. She claims that in 1993, Biden sexually assaulted her.
In an interview with journalist Katie Halper, Reade alleges that on one occasion, Biden began kissing her without her permission, pushed her against a wall, reached under her skirt, and penetrated her with his fingers. According to Reade, he said “come on man, I heard you liked me.”
The “come on man” would be pure Biden. At least he didn’t say, “look, here’s the deal.”
I view Reade’s allegation the same way I view other ancient claims of sexual assault — with skepticism at the outset. The alleged assault occurred 27 years ago. Why are we just hearing about it now? And why haven’t we heard other allegations of sexual assault against Biden?
Biden has taken the opposite approach. When Christine Blasey Ford brought ancient allegations of attempted rape against Brett Kavanaugh, Biden said, “for a woman to come forward in the glaring lights of focus, nationally, you’ve got to start off with the presumption that at least the essence of what she’s talking about is real.”
Applying this principle to Reade’s claim, would mean presuming that the essence of her claim that Biden sexually assaulted her is real. As discussed below, Reade has been willing to come forward with her claim against the former vice president in the “glare” of a presidential campaign.
But just because Biden is a knee-jerk panderer to feminists doesn’t mean the rest of us have to be.
Reade says she complained at the time about Biden’s behavior to an office supervisor, but this person shut her down before she could tell the whole story. She also says she filled out an official form detailing her assault, but does not know what became of it.
If Reade can provide evidence of this, other than her say-so, it would, of course, strengthen her claim. But even in that event, we would want to know why Reade didn’t raise the claim again for more than 25 years (as I understand it).
Reade says that a year ago she reached out to Time’s Up, a project of the National Women’s Law Center that provides support to alleged #MeToo victims. Time’s Up declined to assist Reade. It said that involving itself in a dispute regarding a national political candidate could jeopardize its status as a 501(c)(3) non-partisan group.
It’s worth noting, however, that the public relations firm that works on behalf of the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund is SKDKnickerbocker. Its managing director, Anita Dunn, is a top adviser to Biden’s presidential campaign.
By the same token, it’s worth noting that Reade reportedly has supported the campaigns of Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
Will the mainstream media dig into Reade’s allegation to try to find out whether Biden engaged in sexual assault? Will it apply the “believe all women” standard that was so widely invoked during the Kavanaugh-Blasey Ford dispute? Will it remind us that Biden has embraced a version of that standard?
No, no, and no.