The secretary of the Senate said Monday evening that her office can’t acknowledge the existence of Tara Reade’s alleged complaint filed against Joe Biden in 1993 without violating disclosure laws.
“The Secretary’s Office was advised by Senate Legal Counsel that disclosing the existence of such specific records would amount to a prohibited disclosure under the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991,” Senate secretary spokeswoman Sydney Butler said in a statement.
Butler added that the office was prohibited from authorizing the release of any records relating to Reade’s complaint, even if Reade were to request its release.
“We are not aware of any exceptions in law authorizing our office to disclose any such records that do exist, if any, even to original participants in a matter,” Butler said.
NEW: The Secretary of the Senate has responded to the Biden campaign’s questions regarding release of any records related to Tara Reade’s complaint
They say disclosing the records existence would amount to a “prohibited disclosure,” under law, even if Biden/Reade requested it pic.twitter.com/yXDaZpc55D
— Johnny Verhovek (@JTHVerhovek) May 5, 2020
Reade has accused Biden of kissing her, touching her and penetrating her without her consent in 1993 when he was serving as a senator.
Biden has denied Reade’s allegations, saying in a statement Friday that they “aren’t true. This never happened.”
Biden initially called on the National Archives on Friday morning to perform a search for his personnel records related to Reade’s alleged complaints, but the National Archives told the Daily Caller News Foundation that any such records would have remained under the control of the Senate. (RELATED: National Archives Debunks Biden’s Claim, Says Senate Docs Related To Tara Reade Are Kept Elsewhere)
Biden then sent a letter to Secretary of the Senate Julie Adams on Friday asking for her to search for and release any records related to Reade’s alleged complaint from 1993.
Adams said in a statement earlier Monday that her office could not comply with the request.
“Based on the law’s strict confidentiality requirements (Section 313) and the Senate’s own direction that disclosure of Senate Records is not authorized if prohibited by law (Senate Resolution 474, 96th Congress, Section 3(a)), Senate Legal Counsel advises that the Secretary has no discretion to disclose any such information as requested in Vice President Biden’s letter of May 1,” Adams said in a statement.
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