A spokesman for Joe Biden said the former vice president does not recall an incident in 2014 when a female activist said he inappropriately kissed her, but some of his potential rivals for the Democratic nomination said on Saturday they believe his accuser.
The allegation was made in an online essay published on Friday by Lucy Flores, a party activist who was running to be Nevada’s lieutenant governor. Flores said Biden also touched her shoulders and smelled her hair when they appeared at an event together, making her feel uncomfortable.
“He proceeded to plant a big slow kiss on the back of my head,” Flores wrote in the essay published in The Cut, an outlet of New York Magazine. “I couldn’t move and I couldn’t say anything. I wanted nothing more than to get Biden away from me.”
Responding to the accusation, Biden spokesman Bill Russo said the vice president had been happy to support Flores and to speak on her behalf at the event.
“Neither then, nor in the years since, did he or the staff with him at the time have an inkling that Ms. Flores had been at any time uncomfortable, nor do they recall what she describes,” Russo said on Friday in a statement.
Biden believes Flores has every right to share her own recollection, Russo added, and that it is a positive change for U.S. society that she has the opportunity.
In a separate statement on Saturday, Russo said: “People know Joe Biden and they know his character, his integrity and his values,” adding that he was a champion for women.
Biden served eight years as vice president under former President Barack Obama and 36 years in the U.S. Senate. He has not yet said whether he will run for president in 2020, but has been expected to throw his hat into the ring soon.
Some of his potential rivals for the Democratic party’s nomination to take on Republican Donald Trump addressed the allegation on Saturday.
Elizabeth Warren, a U.S. senator from Massachusetts, told reporters in Iowa that she believed Flores.
“Joe Biden needs to give an answer,” Warren said.
Julian Castro, a former U.S. secretary of housing and urban development from Texas who is also running for president, said he also found Flores credible, according to news reports.
Flores supported Bernie Sanders in his losing 2016 bid for the Democratic nomination. Although the U.S. Senator from Vermont is running again, Flores has said on Twitter that she has not endorsed any of the candidates in this race.
Should Biden decide to run in 2020, after failed bids to be the party’s nominee in 1988 and 2008, he will be a key figure in the Democratic debate over whether a liberal political newcomer or a centrist veteran is needed to win back the White House.
‘He looks like a florescent green helium balloon’: CNN panel breaks into hysterics at Sean Spicer on #DWTS
A CNN panel couldn't stop laughing as Republican Scott Jennings rushed to the side of former press secretary Sean Spicer, who debuted on "Dancing With the Stars" Monday night dressed in a bright-green ruffled shirt and dancing the Salsa.
"No way. What the Hell?" Rye asked the second she saw the video of Spicer.
"So, you’ve seen it," Lemon asked Jennings. "So, is this the guy you remember?"
But Rye, blindsided by the chartreuse, cut in.
‘Not a single Republican reached out to ask what can we do’: Trump’s ‘my African-American’ fan blasts GOP
President Donald Trump once called Gregory Cheadle "My African-American" during a California campaign rally in 2016, but now Trump's champion is out and he says it's due to the GOP's white supremacy.
In an interview with CNN's Don Lemon, Cheadle asked how any person of color could be part of a party that doesn't want them.
"Well, he and the party have just shown that they have no interest in any of group but white," said Cheadle. "Whites are the primary group. Everyone else may get crumbs. But his agenda is targeted towards benefitting whites. For the GOP as well. The GOP is they want to slash Social Security. They want to slash welfare. They don't say diddly-squat about cutting subsidies, loan guarantees, government contracts and whatever else for the wealthy. So they're all about themselves."
The real reason Trump is so jealous of Obama is that he might win an Emmy: Trump biographer
A CNN panel broke out into laughter talking about President Donald Trump's pathetic jealousy of his predecessor, President Barack Obama.
Obama's new book is slated to score major profits, so he was given a substantial advance for the book. Former first lady Michelle Obama has already enjoyed considerable success from the release of her book and tour. The couple has since made a production deal with Netflix for their company that will focus on fiction and non-fiction stories with a positive social message. Meanwhile, Trump is struggling to win reelection.
"Why is this president so fixated on the former president?" wondered Lemon. "Whether it is North Korea, federal judges, a racist birther lie about the former president not being born here, that’s the one that got him into the political scene. It seems like this president has an obsession with former President Obama. What’s going on?"