Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said a sexual assault allegation levied at former Vice President Joe Biden by Tara Reade, a former staffer is “legitimate to talk about” as Biden becomes the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee.
“What you’re voicing is so legitimate and real. That’s why I find this kind of silencing of all dissent to be a form of gaslighting,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a conversation Tuesday night with The Wing, according to CBS.
Reade has accused the former vice president of assaulting her when she worked in his senate office in 1993, and has filed a complaint with Washington, D.C. police. Biden has denied the accusations. (RELATED: ‘Has Anyone Seen Joe?:’ Glenn Greenwald, Others Wonder Why Biden Appears To Be Avoiding The Media)
“I think it’s legitimate to talk about these things,” Ocasio-Cortez said. And if we want, if we again want to have integrity, you can’t say, you know — both believe women, support all of this, until it inconveniences you, until it inconveniences us.”
Reade thanked the congresswoman on Twitter, saying she was the first member of congress to mention her case.
“Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is literally the first member of Congress to address publicly what happened to me when I worked for Joe Biden,” she wrote.
— taratweets ( Alexandra Tara Reade) (@ReadeAlexandra) April 15, 2020
Left-leaning activist groups have been accused of a double standard in their response to the allegations against Biden. Organizations such as Planned Parenthood and Emily’s List supported sexual assault allegations against Justice Brett Kavanaugh, but have largely remained silent since Reade came forward with her allegations.
Ocasio-Cortez has not officially endorsed Biden’s presidential campaign, but told The New York Times this week that she plans to support her party’s likely nominee.