Joe Biden said Friday that the allegations of sexual assault of a former staffer are not true.
Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, released a full statement about the claim, Fox News reports. Former Senate staffer Tara Reade recently came forward, claiming that Biden sexually assaulted her while she worked in his Senate office in 1993.
"They aren’t true. This never happened," Biden said in a written statement.
"While the details of these allegations of sexual harassment and sexual assault are complicated, two things are not complicated. One is that women deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, and when they step forward, they should be heard, not silenced. The second is that their stories should be subject to appropriate inquiry and scrutiny."
Reade came forward in March with the allegation, saying Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993 when she worked as an aide in his Senate office. Earlier this week, a former neighbor of Reade said she remembers Reade confiding to her about the assault. Then a former colleague of Reade’s says she also recalls the incident.
Biden says there is no record that Reade complained to supervisors about the sexual assault, although Reade says she did tell senior staffers at the office. He added that the only place a complaint could be is in the National Archives. He has asked the Secretary of the Senate to search the Archives for “any such document.”
Media members have asked about the University of Delaware files, which includes senatorial papers from his 30 years as a senator, but Biden says those documents do not have any personnel files.
Those documents are not released to the public until two years after Biden retires from public office.
“As a Presidential candidate, I’m accountable to the American people,” he said in his statement. “We have lived long enough with a President who doesn’t think he is accountable to anyone, and takes responsibility for nothing. That’s not me. I believe being accountable means having the difficult conversations, even when they are uncomfortable. People need to hear the truth.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Scott Olsen
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.