The lawyer representing Tara Reade, the woman who has accused Joe Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993, announced on Friday that his firm is no longer representing her, just two weeks after taking her as a client.
Reade accused Joe Biden of sexually assaulting her while working as a Senate aide in his office. Biden has vehemently denied the allegations, and none of his ex-staffers have come forward to corroborate any sexual misconduct ever happened in the Senate office.
Doug Wigdor, a high profile #MeToo era lawyer that has previously brought discrimination cases against Fox News, Bill O’Reilly, and Harvey Weinstein, made the decision to no longer represent Reade on Wednesday.
“Our decision, made on May 20, is by no means a reflection on whether then-Senator Biden sexually assaulted Ms. Reade,” Wigdor told CNN. “We also believe that to a large extent, Ms. Reade has been subjected to a double standard in terms of the media coverage she has received. Much of what has been written about Ms. Reade is not probative of whether then-Senator Biden sexually assaulted her, but rather is intended to victim-shame and attack her credibility on unrelated and irrelevant matters.”
Wigdor’s announcement comes one day after CNN issued a report questioning Reade’s education credentials and a statement that at least two California defense attorneys and a district attorney’s office are now reviewing criminal cases Reade gave expert witness testimony in.
Reade claimed to have graduated from Antioch University in Seattle through a “protected program” with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, but the school denies she ever graduated. The alleged “protected program” was to protect Reade’s identity while she was enrolled as a survivor of domestic violence.
A spokeswoman for Antioch, Karen Hamilton, confirmed to The Times that Reade had attended the school but did not graduate. An Antioch University Official told CNN that no “protected program” has ever existed.
This revelation calls into serious question Reade’s credibility as an expert witness in domestic violence trials. Some of the cases she testified in carried serious charges, including attempted murder, and Reade’s testimony carried serious weight. So far, two lawyers have expressed concern about the misrepresentation of her education credentials and how her testimony may have influenced the outcomes of their trials.
Monterey County Chief Assistant District Attorney Berkley Brannon said that Reade had been a government witness on domestic violence in trials for “probably a decade or more” and that the district attorney’s office is looking into whether Reade lied under oath about her education.