The chairman of the Democratic National Committee shrugged off any need to investigate sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden, noting he went through a vetting process when he became vice president and saying, “I trust Joe Biden.”
Tom Perez on Sunday was asked about a New York Times editorial that called for the DNC to conduct an unbiased, non-political panel to review Biden’s papers to try to find a complaint Tara Reade, a former Biden Senate staffer, filed in 1993.
“There’s been so many investigations of the vice-president. The most comprehensive investigation of the vice-president was when he was vetted by Barack Obama in 2008. I’m very familiar with the vice-presidential vetting process. They look at everything about you,” Perez said on ABC News’ “This Week.”
“They looked at the entire history of Joe Biden, his entire career. And I’ll tell you, if Barack Obama had any indication that there was an issue, Barack Obama would not have had him as his vice-president. Barack Obama trusted Joe Biden. I trust Joe Biden. And those investigations have been done.”
Perez also compared the accusations against Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, to the email controversy that dogged Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election.
“This is like the Hillary emails, because there was nothing there,” he said.
Biden, in an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” last Friday, said Reade’s claims that he assaulted her in 1993 while she was working in his office are untrue.
“I am saying unequivocally it never, never happened, and it didn’t. It never happened,” the former veep said, adding that he doesn’t remember any complaint made by Reade or anyone on his staff informing him of it.
Reade told the Associated Press that the complaint she filed to the Congressional Personnel Office 27 years ago did not include explicit accusations of sexual assault.
Enlarge ImageTom Perez (left) with Joe Biden during an Obama administration cabinet member meeting in 2014
Tom Perez (left) with Joe Biden during an Obama administration cabinet member meeting in 2014Getty Images
“I remember talking about him wanting me to serve drinks because he liked my legs and thought I was pretty and it made me uncomfortable,” Reade told the wire service in an interview Friday. “I know that I was too scared to write about the sexual assault.”
But his counterpart on the Republican National Committee, Ronna McDaniel, criticized the double standard Democrats are showing in their reaction to the Biden accusations in comparison to the claims leveled at Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
“It has been appalling the hypocrisy as to how Brett Kavanaugh was treated versus Joe Biden,” McDaniel said during an appearance on “This Week.” “Brett Kavanaugh — every accuser was put on TV, it was wall-to-wall coverage, they went into his high school yearbook, they said they needed an FBI investigation.”
“It went from ‘me too,’ ‘me too,’ ‘me too,’ to ‘move on,’ ‘move on,’ ‘move on’ in a nanosecond because he’s a Democrat and the hypocrisy is appalling,” the chairwoman added.
McDaniel said President Trump, who has also denied sexual assault allegations again him, was “sticking up” for Biden when the president encouraged him to “go out and fight it.”
“Because due process and the presumption of innocence has no longer been the standard in this country when it comes to Republicans, and now Democrats are suddenly embracing those legal standards that we have made the cornerstone of our — of our country when it comes to Joe Biden, but they threw it out the window when it came to Brett Kavanaugh,” she said.