Tara Reade, a former Senate aide who accused former Vice President Joe Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993, said she wants him to drop out of the presidential race.
Reade sat down with former Fox News and NBC host Megyn Kelly after pulling out of interviews with Fox News’ Chris Wallace and CNN’s Don Lemon.
“I want to say: You and I were there, Joe Biden. Please, step forward and be held accountable,” Reade said in an excerpt of the interview posted by Kelly. “You should not be running on character for the president of the United States.”
Asked if she wanted Biden to drop out, Reade replied, “I wish he would. But he won’t.”
She added that she did not want an apology from Biden.
“I think it’s a little late,” she said.
Biden denied the allegation for the first time last week and reiterated his denial on Thursday.
“Nothing ever happened with Tara Reade,” he said. “Women have a right to be heard and the press should rigorously investigate claims like these. I’ll always uphold that principle. But in the end, in every case, the truth is what matters. And in this case, the truth is these claims are flat-out false. False.”
Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield also issued a statement saying “more and more inconsistencies keep emerging,” pointing to an Associated Press interview in which Reade said, “I wasn’t scared of him, that he was going to take me in a room or anything. It wasn’t that kind of vibe.”
“Women must receive the benefit of the doubt,” Bedingfield said. “They must be able to come forward and share their stories without fear of retribution or harm — and we all have a responsibility to ensure that. At the same time, we can never sacrifice the truth. And the truth is that these allegations are false and that the material that has been presented to back them up, under scrutiny, keeps proving their falsity.”
New doc corroborates timeline:
A 1996 court document obtained by The San Luis Obispo Tribune shows that Reade’s ex-husband declared that she told him she was sexually harassed when she worked at Biden’s office.
The document does not say she was harassed by Biden nor does it say she was sexually assaulted.
Theodore Dronen, responding to Reade seeking a restraining order against him after their divorce, told the court about “a problem she was having at work regarding sexual harassment, in U.S. Senator Joe Biden’s office.”
He said that Reade told him she “eventually struck a deal with the chief of staff of the Senator’s office and left her position.”
“It was obvious that this event had a very traumatic effect on (Reade), and that she is still sensitive and effected (sic) by it today,” he added.