Joe Biden

Rep. Pressley Speaks Out on Allegations Against Biden

The Massachusetts congresswomen published a personal essay Monday on Tara Reade's allegations against the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee

Pressley at Rally in Iowa
Kerem Yucel/AFP/Getty Images

Rep. Ayanna Pressley is calling out the weaponization of assault victims in politics in light of a former Senate staffer's sexual assault allegations against presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

The Boston Democrat made the comments in a personal essay published Monday, in which she also called for Biden to speak more to the "broken systems" allegations like Tara Reade's demand.

Reade, the former Senate staffer who alleges Joe Biden sexually assaulted her 27 years ago, first went public with allegations against the former vice president in 2019.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, the apparent Democratic presidential nominee, denied an allegation of sexual assault from an aide who worked in his office in the early 1990s.

Herself a survivor of sexual assault, Pressley wrote that Republicans who ignored survivors during the Kavanaugh hearings but are now using Reade's allegations against Democratic women do not care about justice for survivors.

"When deep personal trauma is viewed through the skewed kaleidoscope of public opinion — pundits, commentators, twitter bots — it is difficult to articulate what getting to the other side looks like," Pressley wrote.

She did not just call out Republicans. Pressley said she rejects the notion that the Democratic Party and its nominee cannot address the allegations at hand and still defeat President Donald Trump in November.

She also said Biden's response falls short.

"I’m here to ask the Biden campaign and the nominee to give a response that models the empathy, diligence, and acknowledgement of broken systems that this conversation demands," wrote Pressley, who previously endorsed fellow Massachusetts Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren's campaign for president.

Biden denied that Reade's assault allegations ever happened on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" last week.

The former vice president said he would ask the National Archives to determine whether there is any record of a complaint being filed, as Reade has claimed. The Archives deflected inquiries to Capitol Hill, claiming that records for Senate personnel complaints would have remained under the control of the Senate.

Warren this week has continued to back Biden, her former rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, amid the allegations.

"I saw the reports of what Ms. Reade said, I saw an interview with Vice President Biden. I appreciate that the vice president took a lot of questions, tough questions. And he answered them directly and respectfully," Warren told a CNN reporter on Monday.

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