Amid attacks on her potential political motives for coming forward with public allegations of sexual assault by Joe Biden in 1993, accuser Tara Reade said it began only when other allegations against Biden noted no other employees have come forward with similar incidents.
"It wasn't until 2019, when I saw Lucy Flores come forward and the way the media treated her," Reade told Megan Kelly in an exclusive interview, fully released Friday. "I felt I had wanted to come forward, so I talked to my friend Karen, and Karen had said, 'have you noticed they said no employees have come forward?'
"And I said, 'I know,' and I thought about it."
In a 42-minute interview, Reade told Kelly the smear campaign against her is Exhibit A for why it has taken her so long to bring the long suppressed assault allegations forward.
"I'm a posterchild for why women wouldn't come forward, aren't I?" she added later. "If you're watching social media and the news on how I'm being attacked on everything about me – if you did have a story to come forward on Joe Biden – it would be pretty daunting, wouldn't it?
"My end game is basically telling my story in a dignified way, not be torn apart. And it's being able to move on with my life and heal."
She did admit the political nature of the timing of her revelations, but it was brought on by Biden's "running on character," which Reade feels compelled to respond to.
"Everything's political, right?" Reade admitted. "This is deeper than that.
"He is running on a platform of character, and I found that's gross. I know what he's like. I experienced what he was like, and I wanted people to know."
Reade, who is a domestic violence survivor and now public advocate for victims, told Kelly she is a progressive who supported Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. She also voted for Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., in her district, but she was frustrated by being rebuffed to tell her story on Biden's character to a number of women being considered as Biden's running mate.
"I wanted to reach out to them, yes," Reade said, adding Harris was first. "So, I tried to reach out to her, in particular, for help. I wanted to get a safe place to tell what happened, and I didn't get a response, and I kept trying to get it out there.
"Many things can be true at once. He is presented as a champion of women's rights, and I know personally, and I know several other women that did not experience him that way."
Reade admitted to have posted social media support for Biden in the past, and also voting for former President Barack Obama and Biden in both 2008 and 2012.
"I feel politically homeless," Reade says now, removing herself from the Democratic Party over this and refusing to vote Republican because of her progressive beliefs.
"I am not here to influence a national election, and I don't want to be," she told Kelly. "I don't want to help Donald Trump win. I do not want to help Joe Biden win, obviously, he's the person that hurt me."
But, in a direct message to Biden, who she hoped would "drop out" of the race: "You should not be running on character for the president of the United States."
"You don't have to discredit me, or not believe me, to vote for Joe Biden," she said. "I even have friends and family that are still voting for Joe Biden.
"I don't really care, deep down, if they believe me or not. I know what happened to me, and I'll move forward. But I want other survivors to know that they can come forward, and when they see this onslaught of this sort of partisanship, it's very discouraging.
"So, we can come forward unless it's a Democrat? Is that the message we're sending?"
Reade lamented the media and his supporters in being "complicit" in not holding Biden accountable.
"They're saying the media has to investigate it: To me, that was appalling," Reade told Kelly. "It's like calling upon the mob to tear apart somebody. And they did."
Instead, Reade pointed to the Senate personnel complaint she filed, which she said Biden is actively withholding from being released from the University of Delaware to obfuscate the truth.
"I think that says it all," Reade said. "Once we get the document, we'll see what it says.
"I think that his reluctance is speaking volumes."
Finally, on the issue of taking a polygraph, Reade is wary of doing it as a precedent it would set for women weighing whether to come forward. Polygraphs are for "a criminal," like Biden, she added.
"I'm not a criminal," Reade said. "Joe Biden should take the polygraph.
"Does that mean we're presumed guilty and we're all going to have to take polygraphs? I would take one if Joe Biden takes one, but I'm not a criminal."
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
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