Apr 29, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Washington Post editorial board calls on Biden to address sexual assault allegation

Joe Biden at the 11th Democratic presidential debate in Washington, D.C., on March 15. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The Washington Post editorial board published an article on Wednesday calling for former Vice President Joe Biden to publicly address a sexual assault allegation made against him by Tara Reade, a former Senate staffer.

Driving the news: Business Insider this week published accounts from two on-the-record sources corroborating parts of allegations by Reade, who alleges Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993.

  • Biden's campaign has told Axios that the alleged assault "absolutely did not happen." Top Democrats like Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Stacey Abrams have stood behind Biden, while others have remained silent.
  • Biden himself has not publicly spoken about the allegation.

What they're saying: The Post's editorial board called on Biden to release old Senate records stored at the University of Delaware. Reade has said she filed a written complaint with a "Senate personnel office" in 1993, but the university said it cannot release the records until Biden "retires from public life."

"President Trump has been credibly accused of sexual assault, including rape, by dozens of women. He has responded by brushing them off, once claiming repulsively, 'She’s not my type.' It may seem unfair to hold Mr. Trump’s likely rival in the 2020 race to a standard that Mr. Trump has failed to meet again and again. But Mr. Trump shouldn’t be allowed to set that standard. A better man could."
— Washington Post editorial board

Worth noting: After multiple women came forward to accuse Biden of inappropriate touching last year, the former vice president responded by saying he understands "social norms are changing" and that "the boundaries of protecting personal space have been reset."

Go deeper ... Timeline: Tara Reade's sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden

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Why it matters: The failure to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) comes as Trump continues to attack the intelligence community, which he claims abused the law to surveil his 2016 campaign and Trump administration officials.

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Data: Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

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Why it matters: It's the worst quarterly decline since 2008 and shows a huge hit as the economy was just beginning to shut down because of the coronavirus. Economists are bracing for the second quarter's figures to be the worst ever — with some projecting an annualized decline of around 40%.

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