National Archives Admin Refutes Joe Biden: Tara Reade’s Alleged Complaint Wouldn’t Go to Our Records

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MSNBC

The National Archives and Records Administration on Friday disputed former Vice President Joe Biden’s claim that the record of a sexual harassment complaint allegedly made by former staffer Tara Reade would be in its possession.

Biden, who faces growing pressure on the topic from both allies and the media, told MSNBC’s Morning Joe that there was no truth to claims he either harassed or sexually assaulted Reade while she worked for his Senate office in the early 1990s.

“No, it is not true,” Biden told the show hosts. “I’m saying unequivocally it never, never happened and it didn’t. It never happened.”

The MSNBC appearance marked the first time that Biden has addressed the accusations directly since Reade reemerged last month.

Reade, who worked for Biden’s congressional office between 1992 and 1993, had initially come forward last April to accuse the former vice president of unwanted touching. At the time, she told a local California news outlet that she had filed a complaint noting the misconduct with the Senate’s personnel office when it purportedly occurred. In March, however, she claimed there was more to the story, asserting that Biden had pushed her up against a wall, forcibly kissed her, and digitally penetrated her sometime in 1993.

Reade’s accusation of sexual assault has been difficult to corroborate given, that nearly 30 years have passed since the supposed incident. As such, Reade has sought to make public the sexual harassment complaint she allegedly filed in 1993, especially as former Biden staffers claim no such document exists. Reade, for her part, has contended that not only does the complaint exist, but it is likely within the thousands of Senate documents the former vice president donated to the University of Delaware in 2011. Investigative reporter Rich McHugh, Ronan Farrow’s partner on his Harvey Weinstein exposé, says the Biden Papers are likely to contain such a complaint if it exists.

In recent days, pressure has mounted from both progressives and the media for Biden to make those papers public. Most notably, the calls grew on Thursday after it became known that Biden’s campaign staff had accessed the papers for some unknown purpose since he jumped into the 2020 race.

On Friday, in a lengthy statement released ahead of his MSNBC appearance, the former vice president insisted his Senate papers did not hold the key to Reade’s allegation.

“There is a clear, critical part of this story that can be verified. The former staffer has said she filed a complaint back in 1993. But she does not have a record of this alleged complaint,” the statement reads. “The papers from my Senate years that I donated to the University of Delaware do not contain personnel files.”

Biden asserted that it was the “practice of Senators to establish a library of personal papers that document their public record,” including speeches, policy proposals, and legislative text, the former vice president claimed personnel files would not be among the trove of documents.

“There is only one place a complaint of this kind could be — the National Archives,” Biden said, adding that “the National Archives is where the records are kept” from the Senate Office of Fair Employment Practices, where Reade would have filed her complaint to while working on his staff.

“I am requesting that the secretary of the Senate ask the Archives to identify any record of the complaint she alleges she filed and make available to the press any such document,” the former vice president said. “If there was ever any such complaint, the record will be there.”

The National Archives did not respond to requests from Breitbart News before press time. The organization, however, did inform Business Insider that it does not possess records from the Senate Fair Employment Practices offices. Instead, those records are governed by rules crafted by the Senate, which state that they cannot be made public until 50 years after a complaint has been made in order to ensure the privacy of individuals impacted.

The rules ensure that, unless the Senate acts to release the information, any documents from Reade’s 1993 employment will not be made public until at least 2043.

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