Cases like this are usually, “He said,” and “She said.”
But the preponderance of evidence shows that, if nothing else, Tara Reade was going around complaining about sexual harassment by Biden. Between this and the Larry King episode, this looks to be two contemporary pieces of her unhappiness at the time.
That’s not proof that anything happened, but it is evidence that this wasn’t made up last week.
When Senator Dianne Feinstein snaps, “where has she been all these years”, the answer is pretty clear.
A court document from 1996 shows former Senate staffer Tara Reade told her ex-husband she was sexually harassed while working for Joe Biden in 1993.
The declaration — exclusively obtained by The Tribune in San Luis Obispo, California — does not say Biden committed the harassment nor does it mention Reade’s more recent allegations of sexual assault.
Reade’s then-husband Theodore Dronen wrote the court declaration. Dronen at the time was contesting a restraining order Reade filed against him days after he filed for divorce, Superior Court records show.
In it, he writes Reade told him about “a problem she was having at work regarding sexual harassment, in U.S. Senator Joe Biden’s office.”
I think it’s fair to say that Reade had been complaining about this for quite a while.
That doesn’t mean it happened. It does mean that Reade didn’t come up with this story now because Biden is running for office. And that brings us right back to the, “What does she have to gain” test that Democrats have used to defend accusers.
In real life, tests like that are complicated.
But if Reade had wanted to roll out a campaign, it was a slow roll. Again, that doesn’t mean it happened. The lack of any meaningful evidentiary standard in cases like this is a huge problem.
But Reade is at this point a whole lot more credible than any of Kavanaugh’s accusers.