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Biden accuser calls his hugging jokes "incredibly disrespectful"

Former Vice President Joe Biden.
Former Vice President Joe Biden. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

It's "incredibly disrespectful" of former Vice President Joe Biden to make light of accusations of inappropriate conduct toward women, one of his accusers, Nevada Democrat Lucy Flores, told "Fox News @ Night" Monday.

"We’re talking about the fact that, as women, we have had to endure this kind of inappropriate behavior on behalf of powerful men certainly for as long as I’ve been alive — you know, forever."

The backdrop: Several women have accused Biden of touching them inappropriately. During his first public appearance this month since the allegations surfaced, he twice joked at an electrical workers conference he had permission to hug people at the event.

What she's saying: "The basis of the behavior that I talked about was something much more serious than just a hug," told Fox News host Shannon Bream, referring to her claim that Biden leaned in to smell her hair at a campaign event and kissed her on the head. "That is unprofessional, inappropriate behavior, no matter who does it."

The big picture: Biden is expected to announce his candidacy in the Democratic 2020 presidential race this month, per Axios' Mike Allen.