During the confirmation hearings of now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.) made an impassioned plea for Americans to believe women "every time" when it comes to accusations of sexual misconduct.
But now that Gillibrand has been floated as a possible vice presidential pick for presumptive 2020 Democratic nominee Joe Biden, she has made a noticeable adjustment to her own threshold for the evidence required for believing women "every time."
What are the details?
Gillibrand made a name for herself as a women's advocate by taking a stand and becoming the first to call for former Sen. Al Franken (Minn.) — a fellow Democrat whom she said she considered to be "a friend" — to resign in 2017 after sexual harassment allegations emerged against him. Franken eventually stepped down in disgrace.
Democrats criticized Gillibrand's stand against Franken during her short-lived 2020 presidential bid. But she was, of course, even more adamant that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh not be confirmed to the high court because an uncorroborated accusation of sexual assault from his high school days emerged during Senate hearings in 2018.
Amid the Kavanaugh hearings, Gillibrand tweeted, "The fundamental question we must answer right now: Do we value women? Do we believe women? Do we give them the opportunity to tell their story? To be heard? Will we ensure they get the justice they deserve? We must fight to be a country that answers, 'Yes,' every time."
KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND: “I stand by Vice President Biden. He's devoted his life to supporting women and he has vehement… https://t.co/reKHxjK128— Matt Wolking (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@Matt Wolking (Text TRUMP to 88022)) 1588103671.0
But Gillibrand has made a remarkable about-face when it comes to believing women now that she has been floated as a possible pair on the ticket for Biden — who himself is now hit with an accusation of sexual assault with more corroborating evidence than Kavanaugh's accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, was able to bring forth.
Gillibrand said that Blasey Ford should be believed (and Kavanaugh should be disqualified as a nominee) because, the senator argued, Blasey Ford "was telling the truth, and you know it by her story — you know it by the fact that she told her therapist five years ago," and that she told her husband.
In this clip Gillibrand says she believed Ford b/c of therapist notes from 5 years prior to the allegation Why is… https://t.co/1Yqbl9xxOC— Saagar Enjeti (@Saagar Enjeti) 1588107104.0
Yet, Tara Reade — who has accused Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993, with several corroborating witnesses from the time who have gone on record, a purported call from her mother to talk show host Larry King, and the possibility of documentation to support her claim — is not believable enough for Gillibrand.
Sen. Gillibrande told Just the News's Nicholas Ballasy on Tuesday, "So, when I say believe women, it's for this explicit intention of making sure there's space for all women to come forward to speak their truth, to be heard. And in this allegation, that is what Tara Reade has done. She has come forward, she has spoken, and they have done an investigation in several outlets. Those investigations, Vice President Biden has called for himself. Vice President Biden has vehemently denied these allegations and I support Vice President Biden."
The full exchange between Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and the reporter asking about Tara Reade's allegations: https://t.co/W7pKFvsjBu— Jonathan Easley (@Jonathan Easley) 1588114348.0
But Vice President Biden has not denied the claims at all. In fact, he has not been asked by a single interviewer in the media about the allegations, and has not addressed the allegations, himself. His campaign, however, insists that Reade's claims "did not happen."
Here is the video of Gillibrand's answer to Ballasy:
Gillibrand stands by Biden after supporting Kavanaugh, Franken accuserswww.youtube.com