Joe Biden accuser Tara Reade let go by lawyer

Joan E Greve in Washington
Photograph: Donald Thompson/AP

The lawyer representing Tara Reade, who has accused Joe Biden of sexual assault, said on Friday he was dropping her as a client although he continued to believe in the truth of her allegations.

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“Our decision … is by no means a reflection on whether then Senator Biden sexually assaulted Ms Reade,” Douglas Wigdor said in a statement. “On that point, our view – which is the same view held by the majority of Americans, according to a Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll – has not changed.”

Reade is a former staffer from Biden’s office when he was a senator from Delaware. She alleges that he pushed her against a wall in the Senate buildings and assaulted her. Biden has denied the accusation.

Wigdor said his decision was made on Wednesday, a day after CNN published a story raising questions about Reade’s background and her past statements. Though in the statement announcing the split, the lawyer vociferously attacked Reade’s treatment by the press.

“To a large extent Ms Reade has been subjected to a double standard in terms of the media coverage she has received. Much of what has been written about Ms Reade is not probative of whether then-Senator Biden sexually assaulted her, but rather is intended to victim-shame and attack her credibility on unrelated and irrelevant matters,” Wigdor said.

Meanwhile, defense lawyers in California have said that they are reviewing criminal cases in which Reade has served as an expert witness on domestic violence, out of concern that she had misrepresented her educational credentials in court.

Days after CNN raised questions about Reade’s educational background, a spokesperson for Antioch University confirmed to the New York Times that she had not received a degree from the school.