Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is clarifying that the apology he gave to Anita Hill was not for his own actions.
Biden said he reached out to Hill, just ahead of his official campaign launch. At which point, Biden apologized for how she was treated when he was a Senator from Delaware.
A couple of days later, Biden claims he did not treat her “badly,” the Daily Caller reports.
Former Vice President Joe Biden declined to take personal responsibility Friday for the manner in which Justice Clarence Thomas’s 1991 confirmation hearings were conducted, saying he does not believe he personally mistreated Anita Hill.
“Those who are attacking him about this are not going to change their minds about him,” said Anita Dunn, a former top White House aide and Obama campaign alum who is advising Biden.
Biden differentiates his own behavior from that of committee Republicans, who he accused of orchestrating a smear campaign against Hill during a Friday appearance on ABC’s “The View.” In Biden’s judgment, Thomas’s Republican allies bear responsibility for any injury Hill endured, while he himself did nothing wrong.
As the Daily Caller reports, Biden said: “I don’t think I treated her badly. I took on her opposition. What I couldn’t figure out how to do — and we still haven’t figured it out — how do you stop people from asking inflammatory questions? How do you stop these character assassinations?”
According to the report, Biden called Hill earlier this month where he expressed regret for how she was treated.
Biden’s campaign manager Kate Bedingfield described the conversation as: “They had a private discussion where he shared with her directly his regret for what she endured and his admiration for everything she has done to change the culture around sexual harassment in this country.”
As the Washington Examiner previously reported, Biden called Hill earlier this month at which point he expressed regret for “what she endured” during her testimony against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Hill has brought forth allegations of sexual misconduct against Thomas.
Hill said she was not willing to accept the apology without seeing visible changes in Biden’s actions.
“I cannot be satisfied by simply saying I’m sorry for what happened to you. I will be satisfied when I know there is real change and real accountability and real purpose,” Hill said, as the Washington Examiner reports.
“The focus on apology to me is one thing,” she continued. “But he needs to give an apology to the other women and to the American public because we know now how deeply disappointed Americans around the country were about what they saw. And not just women. There are women and men now who have just really lost confidence in our government to respond to the problem of gender violence.”