Speaking with Dan Bongino on Friday, May 1, President Donald Trump said former Vice President Joe Biden “is a confused man” but not only when it comes to handling accusations of sexual assault.
Under growing pressure to publicly address sexual assault allegations from his former staffer Tara Reade, especially when The Atlantic and The Washington Post this week urged Biden to release records that potentially contain confirmation of any complaint Reade made, Biden on Friday finally appeared on the MSNBC’s “Joe Morning” interview to discuss the issue.
Biden vehemently denied Reade’s claim that he sexually assaulted her when she served as his aide in his Senate office in early 1990s, but also said he would not open records held by the University of Delaware to see if there is a copy of the complaint Reade said she filed. Biden was speechless as he tried to explain why he can’t search Reade’s name in Delaware records when he was asked by host Mika Brzezinski.
“He is a confused man. … He’s confused by not only that question; he’s confused about every other question that he’s asked,” President Trump told Bongino.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 2, 2020
Preisdent Trump acknowledged that he was also frequently the target of sexual assault allegations and offered Biden some advice on how to respond to these allegations.
“I understand where he is, and he’s just got to do what he’s got to do, but he can deny, and then as far as records, if he had any records, that would be a great thing if he could show records and dispose of it with records,” the president said.
Biden argued the papers he donated to the University of Delaware from his time as a senator contain his personnel files and opening them up to the public could impact his political career. He added that the National Archives is only one place that holds the complaint.
“I am requesting that the secretary of the Senate ask the archives to identify any record of the complaint she alleges she filed and make available to the press any such document,” Biden said in a statement. “If there was ever any such complaint, the record will be there.”
However, on the same day, the National Archives disputed Biden’s claim, saying that it does not possess records. Instead, those records are governed by a Senate resolution, which stated that they cannot be made public until 50 years after a complaint has been made, according to the Business Insider.
Instead, a Senate Historical Office staffer said the Fair Employment Practices records are governed by a Senate resolution mandating that “records containing personal privacy, information closed by statute, and records of executive nomination are closed for 50 years.” pic.twitter.com/xUVyfnQP2H
— Nicole Einbinder (@NicoleEinbinder) May 1, 2020