Biden says he owes Anita Hill an apology

Former Vice President Joe Biden says he owes Anita Hill an apology for not doing more for her during confirmation hea...

Posted: Dec 14, 2017 6:08 PM
Updated: Dec 14, 2017 6:08 PM

Former Vice President Joe Biden says he owes Anita Hill an apology for not doing more for her during confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Biden chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee when Hill testified there in 1991. Hill said she was sexually harassed by Thomas while he was her supervisor at the Department of Education. Thomas denied the allegations, calling the questioning during the hearing a "high-tech lynching."

Joe Biden said he owes Anita Hill an apology for not doing more during Clarence Thomas' confirmation

Hill accused Thomas of sexual harassment during his 1991 confirmation hearing

In a new interview with Teen Vogue, Biden said he believed Hill, and that he owes her an apology. He said that following criticism over the all-white, all-male committee roster, he campaigned for two female Senators "on the condition that if they won they would come on the Judiciary Committee, so there would never be again all men making a judgement on this."

"And my one regret is that I wasn't able to tone down the attacks on her by some of my Republican friends," Biden said. "I mean, they really went after her. As much as I tried to intervene, I did not have the power to gavel them out of order."

Biden added that if he could do it again, he would have gone forward with a subpoena for three women, whom he had sign affidavits saying they wouldn't testify.

"The reason I didn't, I was worried they would come and not corroborate what she said and make -- I mean, Clarence Thomas only won by two votes. And we still thought we had a chance at beating him."

Regardless, Biden told Teen Vogue, "I wish I had been able to do more for Anita Hill," adding, "I owe her an apology."

The comments come amid increased public attention and scrutiny of sexual harassment through the #MeToo social media movement.

Biden, who drafted the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 and helped launch the "It's on Us" campaign to end college sexual assault while still in the White House, was criticized for the questioning he permitted during the 1991 hearing.

"You testified this morning that the most embarrassing question involved -- this is not too bad -- women's large breasts," Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pennsylvania, said during one part of the hearing. "That is a word we use all the time. That was the most embarrassing aspect of what Judge Thomas had said to you."

Specter added that he could not understand how a lawyer like Hill had not taken notes about her encounters with Thomas.

And Biden himself was the subject of scrutiny when he asked about an interaction with Thomas: "Were you uncomfortable, were you embarrassed, did it not concern you?"

In November, Biden gave an audience in New York a statement similar to the one he offered Teen Vogue. However, he didn't offer a full apology.

"The message I've delivered before is I am so sorry if she believes that," he said then. "I am so sorry that she had to go through what she went through."

When asked about Biden's comments in New York, Hill told the Washington Post, "He said, 'I am sorry if she felt she didn't get a fair hearing.' That's sort of an 'I'm sorry if you were offended.' ... But I still don't think it takes ownership of his role in what happened."

West Lafayette
Overcast
53° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 53°
Kokomo
Overcast
51° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 51°
Rensselaer
Overcast
52° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 52°
Fowler
Overcast
52° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 52°
Williamsport
Overcast
54° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 54°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
49° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 49°
Frankfort
Overcast
50° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 50°
Delphi
Overcast
50° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 50°
Monticello
Overcast
50° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 50°
Logansport
Scattered Clouds
48° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 48°
Cooler, Windy with Spotty Showers
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 118322

Reported Deaths: 3591
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion21502767
Lake10688323
Elkhart6707111
St. Joseph6619113
Allen6330205
Hamilton4938109
Vanderburgh378131
Hendricks2766124
Monroe265536
Tippecanoe256613
Johnson2352124
Clark225957
Porter219947
Delaware200162
Cass19559
Vigo186827
Madison170375
LaPorte149141
Floyd139664
Warrick138242
Howard132663
Kosciusko125917
Bartholomew118457
Marshall101524
Dubois99919
Boone99146
Grant95134
Hancock94643
Noble93132
Henry81226
Jackson7739
Wayne77014
Morgan73438
Daviess68028
Shelby68029
Dearborn67528
LaGrange64011
Clinton62314
Harrison59224
Putnam58411
Gibson5355
Knox5289
Lawrence51629
Montgomery51121
DeKalb48811
White48714
Decatur45939
Miami4394
Greene42735
Fayette42313
Jasper4012
Scott39011
Steuben3907
Posey3460
Sullivan33812
Jennings31612
Franklin31325
Clay3085
Ripley3078
Orange28824
Whitley2826
Carroll27813
Adams2763
Wabash2728
Starke2717
Washington2701
Wells2674
Spencer2633
Jefferson2503
Huntington2473
Fulton2442
Tipton22822
Randolph2238
Perry22113
Jay1920
Newton17411
Owen1711
Martin1680
Pike1641
Rush1574
Vermillion1310
Fountain1292
Blackford1213
Pulaski1141
Crawford1100
Parke1072
Brown1043
Benton870
Ohio797
Union790
Switzerland690
Warren411
Unassigned0226

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events