Former State Assemblywoman Lucy Flores (D-Nev.) questioned former Vice President Joe Biden’s sincerity after he claimed that he would take the complaints about his creepy behavior seriously.
Flores was the first woman to publically tell her story about an uncomfortable encounter with the former vice president. As IJR previously reported, Flores claimed that Biden invaded her personal space by kissing the back of her head and sniffing her hair. It didn’t take long for several other women to come forward with similar stories of Biden’s creepy, invasive behavior.
When Biden addressed the controversy, he claimed that he never intended to make anyone uncomfortable.
Watch Biden’s apology:
Social norms are changing. I understand that, and I’ve heard what these women are saying. Politics to me has always been about making connections, but I will be more mindful about respecting personal space in the future. That’s my responsibility and I will meet it. pic.twitter.com/Ya2mf5ODts
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) April 3, 2019
“I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort. And not once — never — did I believe I acted inappropriately,” Biden said in the statement. “If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully. But it was never my intention.”
Despite claiming he would “listen respectfully,” he cracked a joke about his hugging habit at his first public appearance following the allegations.
During an interview with Fox News, Flores said Biden’s joke is proof that he is not going to change his behavior.
“[Biden’s joke] was so incredibly disrespectful and frankly, to me, demonstrated that the words that he said — that he was going to take this very seriously, that he was going to listen and he was going to learn — to me, that indicated that he didn’t mean that at all if literally the next day he was joking about it.”
Although Flores claimed she called out Biden publically because she wanted him to address his behavior, there have been people who believe she is only aiming to damage the former vice president to benefit Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) — who Flores backed Sanders in 2016.
Flores said her past support for Sanders is “inapplicable” to the situation and damages other women who may be afraid to come forward because of the doubt Flores faced.
“We need to have this conversation about vice president Joe Biden’s entire history,” said Flores.
Biden is currently leading the pack, despite not being an official candidate. If he does enter the race — which he is expected to do Thursday morning — he will be one of 20 Democrats running for the chance to take on President Donald Trump.