A former staffer to Joe Biden is finally telling her account of what she says was a “sexual assault” by the then-U.S. senator.
Former Biden staffer Tara Reade tells her story to Rolling Stone’s Katie Halper in a podcast.
Reade says she was told to deliver a gym bag to the senator, who was “down by the capitol.”
She says he handed him the bag, and he thanked her by name.
“We were alone and it was the strangest thing. There was no, like, exchange, really. He just had me up against the wall,” Reade says.
She says she was wearing a business skirt, and “His hands were on me and underneath my clothes.”
Reade began to choke up and continues, “He went down my skirt then up inside it and he, uh, penetrated me with his fingers.”
According to Reade, Biden was kissing her at the same time.
She says she can’t remember everything Biden was saying, but one was, “Do you want to go somewhere else?”
She says when she pulled away, she says Biden reacted, “Come on, man, I heard you liked me.”
“That phrase stayed with me because I kept thinking what I might have said,” she continues.
She adds he pointed his finger at her and said, “You’re nothing to me. You’re nothing.”
Choking up, Reade said, “For me, everything shattered in that moment because I knew we were alone, it was over, he wasn’t trying to do anything more, but I looked up to him, he was like my father’s age, he was this champion of women’s rights in my eyes, and I couldn’t believe it was happening.”
Reade says Biden pulled back and “looked annoyed,” and put his hands on her shoulders and repeatedly said, “You’re okay, you’re fine.”
Reade says she tried to recover in the Russell Senate Office Building.
“I was shaking, just everywhere, and I was trying to grasp what had just happened,” she says.
“But I knew it was bad because he was so angry.”
She says Biden’s office treated her like “nothing.”
“If people want to know why women don’t come forward, that’s why.”