That takeaway was notable, as the episode came back under the microscope this weekend after a former Nevada assemblywoman, Lucy Flores, published an essay Friday in NY magazine's The Cut accusing Biden of inappropriately touching her and kissing the back of her head in 2014.
Flores said: "Very unexpectedly and out of nowhere, I feel Joe Biden put his hands on my shoulders, get up very close to me from behind, lean in, smell my hair, and then plant a slow kiss on the top of my head".
"In my many years on the campaign trail and in public life, I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort", Biden said in a statement responding to the Flores' allegation.
"Frankly, my point was never about his intentions, and it shouldn't be about his intentions".
"We are changing the attitudes of America about what constitutes appropriate behavior on the part of a man with a woman", Biden said in October 2000, advocating for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which the former DE senator first introduced in 1990.
Marie Harf said that the default response should be listening to and believing women who come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct, but she argued there is also a concerted effort by Democratic activists to keep Biden out of the 2020 race.
Lappos made clear that she is speaking out now because Biden is currently seen as running a stealth campaign for president and she believes it is important for voters to understand his record as he potentially seeks the nation's highest office. I was just shocked.
After the incident, she felt uneasy, confused, and gross.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., who has declared her candidacy, said she had "no reason not to believe" Flores but stopped well short of describing the allegations as disqualifying.
Flores said that she's "glad that he's willing to listen" and "glad that he is clarifying his intentions", but that it still doesn't get to the root of the problem. On Friday, in a NY magazine piece, Flores explained how a kiss changed her perception of Biden.
"With all of this diversity, and all of the women who think they're men and all the men who think they're women and all of the people of color and different sexual genders and orientations or a mixture of all of that, the Democrat Party is trying to rebrand and identify itself to be demographically in touch with whatever they think the new America is or is going to become". "I wanted nothing more than to get Biden away from me".
Carter said that she continues to hear about the picture even though years have passed since it was taken.
Former Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter (L) is kissed by his wife Stephanie at the end of his confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, on February 4, 2015, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren said she believed Flores and that Biden "needs to give an answer" about what occurred. If any more women come forward to complain, it will be the kiss of death for him. She recalls, "I felt him get closer to me from behind". Since the #MeToo movement began in fall 2017, the public has paid increased attention to cases of men abusing their positions of power and disregarding the women around them. But her story is not mine.
A top White House adviser suggested that Biden could face serious obstacles if he goes ahead with a Democratic presidential nomination bid.
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