Monday, May 11, 2020

Tara Reade Tells Megyn Kelly That Joe Biden 'Should Not Be Running on Character'

By Robby Soave - May 11, 2020 at 09:30AM

Tara Reade, who has accused Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993, spoke with former Fox News host Megyn Kelly in a lengthy interview that appeared on various social media channels Friday.

Reade went over the details of the alleged assault, offered an explanation for why she waited so long to come forward, demanded that Biden withdraw from the race, and criticized Biden's supporters for mistreating her.

"His campaign is taking this position that they want all women to be able to speak safely," said Reade. "I have not experienced that."

Toward the end of the interview, Kelly brought up the sexual assault accusation against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. She asked Reade whether she thought it hypocritical for #MeToo politicians and pundits to deny her the automatic belief that they showed Christine Blasey Ford.

"It makes me upset, it makes me angry because those were people I respected," said Reade. "I supported Elizabeth Warren, who basically said she believed Joe Biden, and dismissed me."

It was not a softball interview, though: Kelly asked Reade tough questions about why she had seemed to acquit Biden of wrongdoing when she told The Washington Post last year that the problem was not Biden himself. In the interview, Reade—who was a Biden staffer at the time of the alleged assault—claimed that she had only intended to acquit Biden of responsibility for her firing: She believes this was retaliatory but that Biden likely didn't even know she was terminated.

Reade gave several explanations for why it look her so long to come forward. She said that Biden's aides shut her down when she attempted to open up about it in 1993, and that then she felt she had no way to tell the story afterward. Reade claims that she has been trying to tell her story for some time now but met with unwillingness or unfriendliness from the journalists and campaign staffers to whom she reached out.

Kelly also questioned Reade about social media comments she had made that were favorable toward Biden and his record on fighting sexual assault. Reade said those remarks were made in a professional capacity, as an advocate for feminist causes that Biden had purported to support.

Anyone looking for a reason to automatically dismiss Reade must have been disappointed by the interview. She is just as clear, concise, and sympathetic as Ford, whose composure was widely treated by the media as evidence that she must be telling the truth. The reality is that a notable accuser's eloquence is basically just fodder for cable news punditry: It doesn't actually elucidate matters.

Reade, like Ford, doesn't possess any hard evidence. That's hardly surprising—indeed, it would be surprising if she did have a way to prove her accusation—but it puts the public in a difficult position. Of course, the toughest spot is reserved for everyone who said said we should believe victims no matter the circumstance, a club of slogan-loving idiots that includes Biden himself.

Watch the full interview below.


PANDEMIC UPDATE

Mother's Day marked a milestone as U.S. officials reported just 793 deaths and 20,693 new cases of COVID-19. Both numbers represent record lows, though coronavirus reporting typically lags over the weekends and the true numbers could be somewhat higher.

Still, several virus hotspots—including New York City—have managed to slow the spread of the disease, and are now in better shape than some other areas of the country, where the number of cases is still rising. Some states have begun to relax their government-ordered lockdowns. While it's widely expected that this will cause a surge in new cases, it's too early to tell whether the data will confirm such a suspicion.

Meanwhile, several government officials involved in pandemic response planning—including Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases—are self-quarantining after being exposed to a staffer who has tested positive for the virus.


QUICK HITS

  • COVID-19 claims another victim: D.C.'s Street Sense newspaper.
  • The American Civil Liberties Union is not happy about Education Secretary Betsy DeVos's move to strengthen civil liberties for college students accused of sexual assault.
  • Additional video footage of jogger and shooting victim Ahmaud Arbery does nothing to change the underlying facts of the case.
  • Elon Musk says he's breaking up with the state of California.
  • CNN is annoyed that conservatives keep talking about the Michael Flynn story:


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