Wednesday, the National Republican Senate Committee accused U.S. Senator Doug Jones, D-Alabama, of having a double standard about allegation of sexual misconduct by Democrats versus Republicans.
The Presidential campaign of former Vice President Joe Biden (D) has been rocked by allegations made by former Senate staffer Tara Reade that Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993 and that she made a complaint to the Congressional Personnel Office that she was sexually harassed by then Senator Joe Biden, D-Delaware. In a recent Huffington Post article, Biden friend, U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-Alabama) was skeptical of the claims made by Reade against Biden.
“‘The more that comes out, the more and more it, to me, does not have the indicia of credibility that I would be looking to at all,’ Jones said.
Jones called Reade’s account, “totally inconsistent with Biden’s character.”
Reade, along with other women, had made claims that she was sexually harassed by Biden last year. Recently she has made the claim that she was ordered to bring material to Biden’s office and that he shoved her against a wall and put his hand up under her skirt for inappropriate touching. This is the first claim by Reade that she was actually sexually assaulted by Biden.
Senator Jones voted against the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court because of allegations made by Christine Blasey Ford. Ms. Ford made the claim that while they were teenagers at a pool party in the 1980s, a drunken Kavanaugh grabbed her, tossed her on a bed, and tried to remove her swimsuit, before a longtime buddy of Kavanaugh’s broke up the unwanted tryst.
The NRSC’s Nathan Brand shared a Twitter posting by Jones about Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony during Brett Kavanuagh’s nomination hearings.
“The Kavanaugh nomination process has been flawed from the beginning and incomplete at the end,” Sen. Jones wrote. “Dr. Ford was credible and courageous and I am concerned about the message our vote will be sending to our sons and daughters, as well as victims of sexual assault. I will be voting no.”
Claims of past sexual misconduct are nothing unusual in political campaigns.
In Jones’s 2017 special election, he benefitted from widely publicized claims of sexual misconduct against his Republican general election opponent, former Chief Justice Roy Moore (R), dating back to the 1970s.
Moore denied all of the allegations.
“I never sexually mistreated any woman,” Moore said at the time.
Biden similarly denies all of Tara Reade’s allegations.
“No, it is not true,” Biden said. “It never happened.”
Similar complaints were made against then candidate Donald J. Trump (R) during the 2016 presidential campaign. More than a dozen women leveled charges against the billionaire businessman ranging from sexual harassment to sexual assault.
“I have been falsely charged numerous times, and there is such a thing,” Trump said.
There is a long history of politicians ignoring claims of sexual misconduct against their friends and allies; while denouncing their political opponents for similar indiscretions. There are some Republican Senators, who voted for Kavanaugh and Trump, who famously voted to impeach and remove Pres. Bill Clinton (D) for his sexual misconduct in the White House with Monica Lewinsky and then lying about it under oath in depositions for a sexual harassment lawsuit from former Arkansas staffer Paul Jones. Joe Biden voted against Clinton’s removal for proven misconduct (there was DNA evidence); but denounced Kavanaugh and Moore simply for accusations.
The Reade allegation are tricky for Democrats, who need to do very well with women voters if they hope to unseat Trump in November.
Republicans meanwhile are using the accusations as a cudgel against Biden’s campaign as well as against Democratic Senators like Jones, an early Biden endorsee, over the differences in which they are handling the Reade allegations with the Kavanaugh allegations. CNN has produced three people who claim that Reade told them about the incident with Biden at the time. Ms. Ford was unable to produce any corroborating witnesses; while Kavanaugh’s friend, who supposedly witnessed the encounter, denied that it ever happened.
Jones will face the winner of the Republican primary runoff in November. There former Auburn head football coach Tommy Tuberville is running against former Senator Jeff Sessions.
Biden is the presumed Democratic nominee. All the major Democratic candidates have suspended their campaigns and endorsed Biden.
Original reporting by CNN contributed to this report.