Former Vice President Joe Biden’s (D) campaign is reportedly sending out talking points to Democrats regarding an allegation that he sexually assaulted a Senate staffer.
Tara Reade, who worked for Biden while he was a senator, accused Biden of sexually assaulting her nearly three decades ago, as IJR previously reported.
Biden’s campaign has refuted the allegation in a statement, “Such claims should also be diligently reviewed by an independent press. What is clear about this claim: it is untrue.”
Reade’s allegation was made public in late-March as Biden started working to unify the Democrats to support him in the general election. Since then, some have noted that Biden has not been asked about the allegation during interviews.
However, in the past week, more attention has been given to the allegation as a new report appeared to provide corroboration for Reade’s story.
Now, the Biden campaign has sent out talking points for Democrats about Reade’s accusation, according to BuzzFeed News which published them on Tuesday night.
According to the report, first, Biden’s campaign notes that The New York Times investigated Reade’s allegation and “all four of the people Mrs. Reade says were notified of an official complaint told the New York Times on the record that they have absolutely no recollection of any such conversation.”
They then shift to Biden’s decades of public service and image as a champion of women’s rights:
“Biden has been a fierce advocate for women, authoring and fighting to pass the Violence Against Women Act and launching a campaign to end sexual assault on college campuses. He has spent his life fighting to end abuses of power against women and using his voice to advocate for women across the country and around the world.”
Additionally, the talking points note that during all of Biden’s previous campaigns, he was not accused of “conduct like this.”
Finally, the last talking point says, “Biden believes that all women have the right to be heard and to have their claims thoroughly reviewed. In this case, a thorough review by the New York Times has led to the truth: this incident did not happen.”
A spokesperson for the Times responded to the Biden’s campaign talking points and said they “inaccurately” state that the paper found the assault “did not happen.” Instead, the Times said, “Our investigation made no conclusion either way.”
After Business Insider reported on April, 27 that Reade’s former neighbor said she remembered hearing about the alleged assault in 1995 or 1996, several Democrats were asked about the accusation.
Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams (D) defended Biden as IJR previously reported. She told CNN on Tuesday, “I know Joe Biden and I think that he is telling the truth and that this did not happen.”
Watch the interview below:
CNN's Don Lemon grills Stacey Abrams on Tara Reade's sexual assault allegation against Joe Biden:— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) April 29, 2020
“I believe Joe Biden… I know Joe Biden and I think that he is telling the truth, and that this did not happen.” pic.twitter.com/3tIjU6hKdh
Additionally, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) said on Tuesday, “I stand by Vice President Biden. He’s devoted his life to supporting women, and he has vehemently denied this allegation.”
Reade, who says she has been a lifelong Democrat, has not been shy about calling out prominent Democratic figures who she feels have not given the proper attention to her allegation.
She accused former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of “enabling a sexual predator” after she endorsed Biden during a virtual event on Tuesday.