Politics

Corporate Media Said Biden’s Accuser Lied About Her Background. Records Show It’s Not That Simple

Photo courtesy of Tara Reade.

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Mary Margaret Olohan Social Issues Reporter
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  • Corporate media reported that President Joe Biden’s accuser Tara Reade lied about her academic background, but records provided by Reade show that the situation is not so black and white. 
  • Reade obtained documents from both her college and law school to correct stories that cast doubt on her credibility.
  • The documents are consistent with Reade’s story that her graduation from Antioch University was handled in a unique and discreet manner tied to her legal name change due to domestic violence. 

Corporate media reported that President Joe Biden’s accuser Tara Reade lied about her academic background, but records provided by Reade to the Intercept show that the situation is not so black and white.

Reade obtained documents from both her college and law school that she has provided to a number of outlets in attempts to clear her name and correct stories that had cast doubt on her credibility.

The documents are consistent with Reade’s story, the Intercept reported Monday, that her graduation from Antioch University was handled in a unique and discreet manner tied to her legal name change due to domestic violence. The documentation also complicates the New York Times’ assertion that Reade deliberately lied about her undergraduate degree.

The Media’s Claim: Reade Lied About Her Degree

Reade accused Biden last spring of sexually assaulting her when she worked for him as a senate staffer in 1993. Biden has repeatedly denied that this happened.

Her accusations garnered national attention in late April and early May, but subsequent reporting on her academic credentials cast doubts on her credibility by claiming she did not graduate from college at Antioch University and that she was not a member of the faculty at Antioch University. (RELATED: ‘I Want The Same Equal Treatment’: Biden Accuser Tara Reade Tears Into Media, Women’s Groups, Democratic Politicians)

The university itself has complicated reporting on Reade’s claims. Antioch spokesperson Karen Hamilton told CNN in May that “[Reade] attended but did not graduate from Antioch University,” adding that “she was never a faculty member” but “did provide several hours of administrative work.”

However, the university acknowledged in a recent statement to Reade’s attorney that Reade “worked for Antioch University as a Prior Learning Evaluator in 2008, 2009, and 2010,” according to the Intercept.

The publication noted that the “Prior Learning Evaluator” position is a faculty position at Antioch.

Confusion Around Reade’s Time At Antioch University

Reade told both CNN and the New York Times in May 2020 that she got her bachelor’s of arts degree from Antioch under a “protected program,” which was related to the domestic violence charges against her ex-husband, and personally worked with the school’s president to make sure her identity was protected while she was obtaining the credits for her degree.

CNN reported at the time that an Antioch official said such a “protected program” never existed. (RELATED: Tara Reade, Rose McGowan Believe Cuomo Accuser Lindsey Boylan)

The New York Times painted Reade’s time in law school in dramatic terms, describing how “she was so poor she had to borrow law books and occasionally brought her daughter to class when she couldn’t find child care.”

The Times accused Reade of not only failing to graduate Antioch, but also of keeping it a secret — despite her explanation that her college and law-school had an arrangement involving the protected program for victims of domestic violence, as the Intercept reported.

“She also harbored a secret,” the Times reported. “She had never obtained the undergraduate degree required for law school admission.” (RELATED: The Daily Caller News Foundation Is Suing The University Of Delaware For Access To Joe Biden’s Senate Library)

Antioch spokeswoman Rebecca Todd told the Intercept that Reade was not conferred an undergraduate degree from the university. Todd told the Daily Caller News Foundation Monday evening that the university “stands by its previous statements.”

The Intercept reported that Reade enrolled in Antioch University Seattle’s bachelor’s degree completion program in September 2000 under the name Alexandra McCabe after receiving warnings from police in 1998 that she and her daughter were in danger. Reade’s transcripts show that she had earned a total of 96 credits at previous colleges that were qualified to transfer to Antioch, the Intercept reported.

To graduate, she would have had to complete a life experience project and two other courses, the Intercept reported. Reade claims she did finish the project but that Antioch’s records are flawed.

The Intercept noted that though neither Reade nor Antioch can produce a record that she completed the project, her claims are supported by the fact that Antioch hired her to help evaluate the projects of other students.

Emails From Seattle University School of Law Shed Some Light

Emails from officials at the Seattle University School of Law examined by the Intercept demonstrate that the school did not have her official transcript but had come to an agreement that she did not need to provide one. This agreement was tied to her domestic-violence related name change, the Intercept reported.

In March 2001, University of California official Delores O’Brien sent the Seattle University School of Law’s Alternative Admission Program a letter noting that Reade’s records were “not available” due to “the consequences of domestic violence and the related fear.”

“Thank you for keeping her safety at the forefront of your rules and expectations,” O’Brien wrote in an affidavit and letter of recommendation, according to The Intercept. (RELATED: Advocacy Groups That Pushed ‘Believe All Women’ Silent On Cuomo #METOO Accusers)

The affidavit confirms Reade’s claim that her name change was involved in the process but testifies that Reade had already graduated, which the Intercept notes was not true — Reade told the publication that she was set to graduate later that spring and that she understood Antioch to have let the law school know this privately.

After starting classes that summer, Reade received a letter noting that the law school did not have her final transcript from Antioch on file. But the associate dean for student affairs, Donna Deming, emailed the law school’s associate registrar and let him know that “we waived the requirement that Ms. McCabe furnish us with an official transcript,” according to the Intercept.

Deming’s email not only confirmed that the school’s dean had been consulted in the matter but also noted that she would write a memo “explaining the circumstances as to why we will not receive an official transcript.”

“I should tell you that in making this decision, Dean [Rudolph] Hasl was consulted,” the email said, according to the Intercept. “Would you please take whatever steps are necessary to clear her record regarding the receipt of a transcript.”

The law school associate registrar Deann Ketchum reportedly replied, “I did not see a memo in Ms. McCabe’s file to this effect, but will be sure to include a copy of this e-mail for future reference.”

“She should not receive any additional correspondence regarding this matter, nor will she be at risk for having a hold placed on her account,” Ketchum wrote, according to the Intercept. “I will be sure to flag her record with the appropriate code.”

Reade told the Intercept that she believes her name changes and Social Security number change complicated the ability to link her credits from the different schools, which prevented her from having a normal file.

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