Presidential hopeful Joe Biden said he has a proud history of campaigning against sexual violence, as he faces mounting pressure to respond to a fresh assault allegation made by a former aide.
The presumptive Democratic nominee has been accused by Tara Reade of assaulting her in 1993, when she was a 29-year-old staff assistant in the office of Biden, then a US senator from Delaware.
Biden’s campaign has denied the claims, but he himself has not responded directly to the allegations by Reade, now 56.
Earlier, days before Joe Biden sealed his place as the Democratic nominee to take on Donald Trump in the 2020 US presidential election, a woman told the host of a niche podcast that the former vice-president once sexually assaulted her.
However he touted his record of supporting abuse victims when asked a question about military prosecutions for felonies including rape at a virtual town hall late Wednesday.
“As you know, I wrote and championed the Violence Against Women Act, transformed how this country gets justice and support to survivors and led the ‘It’s On Us’ campaign to fight sexual assault on campuses. As VP, I fought to provide a special victims counsel for sexual assault cases in the military,” the 77-year-old said.
He promised that “all options are on the table” when it came to assaults in the military.
Biden spoke as the furor surrounding the claim by Reade continues to grow, despite a statement issued by his campaign on April 13 which said the incident “absolutely did not happen.”