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Former Vice President Joe Biden. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images

Another 2 women have come forward with accusations of inappropriate touching against Joe Biden according to the New York Times in a report Tuesday evening, intensifying the scrutiny against the former vice president as he edges closer to announcing a 2020 presidential run.

Details: Like the Lucy Flores and Amy Lappos, who leveled accusations of inappropriate physical contact, the Times reports that none of the women have accused Biden of sexual harassment or assault. Biden had denied the accusations in a statement Sunday, saying: "Not once — never — did I believe I acted inappropriately. If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully. But it was never my intention."

What they're saying:

  • Caitlyn Caruso, who the Times described as a sexual assault survivor, told the outlet that Biden put his hand on her thigh and hugged her “just a little bit too long” during an event at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. Caruso was 19 years old at the time, and she "squirmed in her seat to show her discomfort," per the Times.
  • D. J. Hill, 59, reportedly said Biden put his hand on her shoulder and then started to drop it down her back, when she and her husband asked him for a photo at a fundraising event in Minneapolis in 2012. She said Biden made her "very uncomfortable." Per the Times: "Her husband, seeing the movement, put his hand on Mr. Biden’s shoulder and interrupted with a joke."

The backdrop: Following the 2 first accusations, Democrats — including those who worked with Biden in the Obama administration — have been coming to his defense, describing him as a warm, grandfatherly figure who would never be intentionally malicious.

  • But Flores and Lappos had said Democrats cannot condone his behavior while condemning President Trump's treatment of women.

Go deeper: Biden spokesman condemns mischaracterizations of former VP's behavior

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Driving the news: One of the most striking moves from the Biden administration thus far was a show of continuity — concurring with the Trump administration's last-minute determination that China had committed "genocide" against Uyghur Muslims.

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