Tara Reade's case just got stronger with a newly discovered legal document
Because Tara Reade challenges a Democrat, the media have been doing their utmost to undercut her allegation that Joe Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993. What's helped is that Reade's story has changed over the years, morphing from describing Joe's usual grabby behavior to describing a brutal sexual assault.
These changes, coupled with the fact that Reade recently praised Biden and seems to be a Bernie-supporter, have led many people to conclude that she's lying. Even the fact that several people are stating today that Reade told them in the 1990s about the assault has not changed this suspicion. On Thursday, though, Reade's version of events got a big boost when a San Luis Obispo newspaper went rooting through court files from Reade's 1996 divorce.
The divorce can't have been a very civil affair, for Reade sought a restraining order against Theodore Dronen, her then-husband. In response to the request for the restraining order, Dronen filed a declaration in which he stated under oath that Reade had told him about being sexually harassed in 1993 while working for Joe Biden (although she did not identify Biden as the harasser) and about being traumatized by the event:
I met Petitioner in the spring of 1993 while working in Washington, D.C. At the early stages of our dating, Petitioner felt comfortable confiding in me as we both worked for Member of Congress, and we shared many other common interests. On several occasions Petitioner related a problem that she was having at work regarding sexual harassment, in U.S. Senator Joe Biden's office. Petitioner told me that she eventually struck a deal with the chief of staff of the Senator's office and left her position. I was sympathetic to her needs when she asked me for help, and assisted her financially, and allowed her to stay at my apartment with my roommate while she looked for work. It was obvious that this event had a very traumatic effect on Petitioner, and that she is still sensitive and effected [sic] by it today.
That is pretty damning. What's especially interesting is Dronen's statement that Reade had been genuinely traumatized by what happened. For most people today, the phrase "sexual harassment" implies irritating, off-putting, and sexist behavior, such as remarks about a woman's looks or clothes, sitting too close at meetings, staring at a woman's breasts, etc. Women hate those things, and they have no place at work, but they're not traumatizing.
If Reade was as traumatized as Dronen says, that implies that something more significant happened than Biden breathing down her neck or staring at her breasts. Her level of anguish is consistent with an actual sexual assault, such as the one she's now describing. It's easy to imagine that, back in 1993, Reade had a binary view of things: in her mind, there was rape, and there was sexual harassment. The idea that a man pushing her against a wall and using his fingers to penetrate her was a criminal assault that fell short of actual rape may not have occurred to her.
As for Reade's slowly revealing the story and her continued respect for Biden, that may be normal, at least according to expert testimony in the Harvey Weinstein rape trial:
A forensic psychiatrist, Barbara Ziv, testified for the prosecution that it is common for victims of a sexual assault to not report the crime to law enforcement and to remain in contact with their attacker. In some cases, Dr. Ziv said, victims worry that their assaulter might ruin their reputation or job. Sometimes the victim maintains a relationship with the perpetrator because they have a connection to the person.
"Those women do not always leave," Dr. Ziv said. "In fact, they frequently do not leave and they stay for a long period of time, and they may think about it but they don't do it."
In previews of her interview with Megyn Kelly, Reade said she's willing to swear under oath that she's speaking the truth and will even take a lie-detector test if Biden takes one, too:
MK EXCLUSIVE: Will Tara Reade go under oath or take a polygraph? pic.twitter.com/aBXohhg14n— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) May 7, 2020
I know of two women who don't want Reade to go anywhere near a lie-detector machine or a Bible for oath-swearing. At Twitchy, a post details Dianne Feinstein's about-face on the #MeToo movement, which is ironic, given that Feinstein was the first to learn of Christine Blasey Ford's squirrely allegations against Kavanaugh and that Feinstein brought Ford's claims before the Senate. The other person who shows up in the Twitchy post is Amy Klobuchar, who some say has the inside track to be Biden's running mate, and who has abandoned completely any allegiance to the #MeToo, #BelieveAllWomen moment.
If hypocrisy is a winner in politics, the Democrats have achieved total victory.