The Joe Biden campaign is circulating talking points regarding the sexual assault allegations made by Tara Reade, BuzzFeed reported on Tuesday.
The report stated that while Biden has not addressed the allegations publicly, his campaign “has sought to coordinate and unify Democratic messaging on the matter, advising surrogates earlier this month to say that the allegation ‘did not happen.’”
The report stated that aides were “coordinating messaging” to appear as if the allegations had been “thoroughly vetted and determined to be unfounded.”
“Biden believes that all women have the right to be heard and to have their claims thoroughly reviewed,” the talking points read, according to BuzzFeed. “In this case, a thorough review by the New York Times has led to the truth: this incident did not happen.”
“Vice President Joe Biden has spent over 40 years in public life: 36 years in the Senate; 7 Senate campaigns, 2 previous presidential runs, two vice presidential campaigns, and 8 years in the White House,” they went on.
“There has never been a complaint, allegation, hint or rumor of any impropriety or inappropriate conduct like this regarding him — ever.”
While Biden has not personally denied the allegations, BuzzFeed reported that his campaign referred the news site to a previous statement from April 13:
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.
When Bernie Sanders dropped out of the presidential race, Reade took to Twitter to lament the news:
Many of you that supported different Dem candidates are struggling right now.
I will still fight to have my history with Joe Biden known that he sexually harassed & assaulted me when I was his staffer in 1993.
You all need to vote for who you wish. For me there is no democracy. pic.twitter.com/RzfupaDAqu
— taratweets ( Alexandra Tara Reade) (@ReadeAlexandra) April 8, 2020
In late March, Reade detailed the attack she said took place near the U.S. Capitol:
And then he went down my skirt and then up inside it. And he penetrated me with his fingers, whatever. And he was kissing me at the same time and he was saying something to me. He said several things and I can’t remember everything [that] he said. I remember a couple of things. I remember his saying, first, like as he was doing it, ‘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, how I was pulled back and he said, ‘Come on man, I heard you liked me.’ That phrase stayed with me because I kept thinking what I might have said. And I can’t remember exactly if he said ‘I thought’ or if ‘I heard.’ It’s like he implied that I had done this.
“For me, everything shattered in that moment,” she added. “He wasn’t trying to do anything more. But I looked up to him. He was my father’s age. He was this champion of women’s rights in my eyes and I couldn’t believe it was happening.”