Rennie Wilkinson | Contributing Writer
With former Vice President Joe Biden’s candidacy looking more and more likely as the race towards the 2020 election heats up, new and possibly incriminating evidence about the likely-future-candidate is beginning to come to light. So far, two women – Lucy Flores and Amy Lappos - have come forward accusing Biden of inappropriate and unwanted physical contact, to put it simply. These accusations have drawn scrutiny from many voters, as well as other Democrats, with some even going as far as to say Biden should announce he is pulling out of the race before even having entered it.
Lucy Flores was the first woman to come forward, with a letter that she pennedlast week, in which she claimed that Biden touched her at one of her own campaign rallies for the lieutenant governorship of Nevada in 2014. In her article, she says that Biden not only “leaned…in and inhaled [her] hair,” but that after that, he also “proceeded to plant a big slow kiss on the back of [her] head.” Flores also states that an operative from Biden’s staff attempted to silence her when she first came forward to him about this. She went further, saying that this whole situation highlights the overarching problem of the imbalance of power in the nation, even if Biden hadn’t broken any laws.
The next woman to come forward was Amy Lappos, who revealed her own experiencewith Biden to the Connecticut news publication, the Hartford Courant. In her statement, she revealed that Biden inappropriately touched her and “rubbed noses with her” at a political fundraiser in 2009, however, Lappos made it clear that this interaction “wasn’t sexual.” Nonetheless, she believes that “if Biden truly supports women and gender equality, he [should] step aside and support one of the many talented and qualified women running.”
Both women have expressed that they came forward because of the growing momentum around Biden’s potential 2020 candidacy and that they could no longer stay quiet, especially in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Several Democrats that have already announced their candidacy have been asked to comment on this scandal, including Senator Bernie Sanders, an early 2020 frontrunner, who stressed the need to “fundamentally change the culture of this country and to create environments where women feel comfortable and feel safe…”
Senator Sanders also added that he did not believe that this is a disqualifying scandal for Biden, but that was when only one woman had come forward. Mr. Biden also offered his comments on the situation, denying the claims that he “acted inappropriately” and that he will “remain the strongest advocate [he] can be for the rights of women.”