When former Vice President Joe Biden was vetted by the Obama team during the VP search in 2008, a “deep-dive” investigation didn’t turn up a shred of evidence to support Tara Reade’s new allegation against the former VP.
In a piece for CNN, former Obama strategist David Axelrod wrote, “The comprehensive vet certainly would have turned up any formal complaints filed against Biden during his 36-year career in the Senate. It did not. The team would have investigated any salacious rumors of the sort that travel far and wide in Washington. There were none.”
As former Obama campaign manager David Plouffe said on Friday, “Not a whisper.”
Had there been any hint of truth to Reade’s allegations, Axelrod said that Biden wouldn’t have been chosen as Barack Obama’s running mate.
Through that entire process, the name Tara Reade never came up. No formal complaint. No informal chatter. Certainly, no intimation of sexual harassment or assault from her or anyone else. The team of investigators, expert in their work, would not have missed it.
Reade did not surface her allegations of a criminal sexual assault when Biden was a candidate for president in 2008, nor did she offer them confidentially to the Obama vetting team when Biden emerged as a principal contender for vice president later that year.
Had any credible issue been raised, you can be sure Biden would not have been the nominee. Obama would not have tolerated it, even if he and Biden were close then, which they were not. Their friendship grew only after Biden joined the ticket and through their eight-year partnership in the White House. At that time, they were distant Senate colleagues and most recently rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Joe Biden was right to respond to the allegation, but it’s time to get back on offense
Joe Biden was right to go on the record this week and respond to Tara Reade’s allegation. In an interview on Friday, he unequivocally denied it and even called for her claim to be fully investigated.
By demanding the release of documents related to Reade’s claim – and not trying to smear her – Biden is acting like someone who knows the allegation is false and isn’t afraid to clear the air.
But now that he has addressed this issue head on, Biden’s campaign would be smart to get back on offense and remember that this election must be a referendum on Donald Trump.
Joe Biden – and the same media that stirred itself into a frenzy over Tara Reade’s false claim – should call for an investigation of the more than 25 credible sexual assault allegations against Donald Trump.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.