Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden is being wishy-washy on his stance on how he thinks he treated Anita Hill in 1991.
On Friday, during an interview on “The View,” Biden backtracked on an alleged apology that he said he gave Hill earlier in the week over the phone.
“I don’t think I treated her badly,” Biden said on the show when discussing how he led the Senate hearings as Senate Judiciary Chairman when Hill was forced to recount, in detail, how Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas had allegedly sexually harassed her.
On “The View,” Biden continued by shifting the blame off of himself when he apologized for Hill’s treatment by others and asked, “how do you stop people from asking inflammatory questions?”
“Since I had publicly apologized for the way she was treated…I didn’t want to, quote, invade her space,” Joe Biden says on why he only recently called Anita Hill. “I was grateful she took my call.” https://t.co/rxCXj3uvWG pic.twitter.com/hmg3YBVOa0
— The View (@TheView) April 26, 2019
Knowing that his role in the infamous Senate hearings would be brought back under the microscope after announcing his candidacy for president in 2020, several days before the big reveal, Biden had a phone conversation with Hill.
In a New York Times interview, Hill, a lawyer and academic, said that Biden didn’t really apologize and that he didn’t seem to really be taking responsibility for his behavior at the hearings and for the damage he caused other victims of sexual assault and harassment.
In the interview with the Times, Hill also brought up recent accusations coming to the forefront in the media of Biden inappropriately touching women, especially with his nose.
Hill also referenced several injustices during the Senate hearings, where Biden did not call other women who could have been corroborating witnesses for her testimony against Thomas. The women were willing to testify, but Biden did not call on them, Hill told the Times.
Two of the three women who tried to come forward are still currently alive: Sukari Hardnett and Angela Wright. Wright called Biden “pretty much useless” during the hearings just last year in an interview.
Biden has denied that he purposefully kept the women from publicly testifying and said they were either reluctant to come forward or backed out.
Biden has expressed regret for how the hearings went for Hill in recent months. In March, Biden gave a speech where he said: “To this day, I regret I couldn’t give her the kind of hearing she deserved.”
But Hill doesn’t want “regret” or even an apology for her to support Biden’s bid for the presidency.
“I cannot be satisfied by simply saying, ‘I’m sorry for what happened to you,’” Hill told the New York Times. “I will be satisfied when I know there is real change and real accountability and real purpose.”