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HAVE RECORDS BEEN SANITIZED?
by Joseph DeMaio, ©2020
(May 3, 2020) — Well, your faithful servant never thought the day would come that he would have anything good to say about MSNBC or its “reporting” personnel. But last Friday on the Morning Joe show, Mika Brzezinski did a fairly good job of interrogating Joe Biden on the issue of Tara Reade’s allegations of sexual assault by him in 1993 when she was an employee on his Senate staff. The video clip is around 18 minutes long, but it is worth your time to watch it… all of it.
Mind you, the questions posed to Biden were not as pointed as they might have been during, say, cross-examination in a criminal rape trial with Jeanine Pirro as prosecutor… oh…, wait…, unless Biden waived his Fifth Amendment privileges, those questions could not be asked. Nonetheless, Brzezinski, while not a lawyer, posed some interesting questions later in the interview…, several of which Biden evaded answering.
Getting straight to the point of the allegation at the outset, Brzezinski asked Biden directly: “Did you sexually assault Tara Reade?” Biden responded (this is a quote): “No, it is not true. I’m saying unequivocally, it never, never happened, and it didn’t. It never happened.”
OK, so now, the issue is joined. Tara Reade says it did happen; Joe Biden says it did not happen. She said/he said. What next?
Well, if Biden’s prior statements about “believing” women who come forward alleging sexual assaults mean anything, Reade’s claims should be examined and a determination made as to whether they are true or not and what items of evidence may exist to either corroborate the claims or rebut them. In addition to the Brzezinski interview, the Biden campaign released a statement claimed to be from him. However, since the statement is generally grammatically correct and coherent – not to be confused with the differing quality of being “persuasive” – it was no doubt constructed by a campaign minion rather than by Biden himself.
Interestingly, the vast bulk of the statement is a “puff-piece” extoling Biden’s purported “respect for the right of women to be heard on matters of this nature” and focusing the attention on his claimed authorship of the “Violence Against Women Act of 1994.”
The term “claimed” is used here because the official website of the Congress confirms that the original bill – H.R. 3355 – included, as Title IV of that proposed legislation, provisions specifically addressing violence against women. It was authored not by Biden but instead by Congressman Jack Brooks (D. TX) in 1993 and co-sponsored by then-congressmen Charles Schumer (D. NY) and William Hughes (D. NJ).
While Biden may have put his fingerprints on another version of the legislation, lifted from the House bill – let us for now avoid pejorative terms such as “copied verbatim” or “plagiarized” – and engrafted onto a Senate bill, the congressional website confirms that the final law which was enacted (Pub.L. 103-322) originated as H.R. 3355, authored not by Joe Biden but instead by Representative Jack Brooks.
That little anomaly aside – and apart from the categorical denial of Reade’s allegations – the crux of the public statement the Biden campaign released references the personnel assault/harassment complaint that Tara Reade says she filed in 1993 with her Senate supervisors after the asserted assault. The Biden statement identifies the Senate office where such a claim would have been filed as being the “Office of Fair Employment Practices,” which was merged in 1995 into the “Office of Congressional Workplace Rights.”
The Biden statement also asserts that the records of that office from the period in question would now be found at the National Archives and that the National Archives is the “only one place a complaint of this kind could be.” Referencing the National Archives, the Biden statement claims that “[i]f there was ever any such complaint, the record will be there.” The statement urges the Secretary of the Senate to make inquiry at the National Archives and, if such a complaint or record of it is found, to reveal it to the press. Now that’s some chutzpah…, no?
Ummmm… hang on a second. If Reade did, in fact, file such a complaint in 1993 and if, in fact, that complaint was once there, the real question instead should be: if no complaint (or record of a complaint) if found today, was something of that nature which once had been filed and archived there subsequently removed at some point in the past prior to today?
Stated otherwise, Biden is claiming that if today, no “such complaint” can be found there – the “only place” it could be, according to Biden – then Reade’s story is not true. This is plainly a smoke-and-mirrors attempt to frame the question as a false theorem: “if not ‘A,’ then not ‘B.’” Biden (or his handlers who drafted the statement for him) are hoping that the electorate will ignore the non sequitur embedded in the statement. The real question is: was the complaint or record of the complaint once there, but today is not there?
If it was once there and has since been removed, when was it removed? More importantly, who removed it? If the National Archives adheres to standard record-keeping practices – a rebuttable presumption not yet confirmed – not only will it have preserved the documents placed into its possession, it will have recorded, cataloged and indexed the documents received. Thus, even if an original Reade complaint from 1993 filed with the Office of Fair Employment Practices is not found in the actual records…., might evidence of its original existence be found upon an examination of the National Archives’ catalog and index of the Biden documents?
By analogy, it is not unlike asking for the production of the contemporaneous microfilm record of a live birth to corroborate the claimed authenticity of an image of a birth certificate posted to the Internet.
Recall as well, faithful P&E readers, that one Sandy Berger, once the National Security Advisor to President Bill Clinton, pleaded guilty in 2005 to his October 2003 removal (i.e., stealing) and destruction of copies of classified documents from the National Archives. The classified documents related to a report dealing with the Clinton Administration’s mishandling of the “2000 Millennium Attack Plots.”
Against this historical backdrop, it might be prudent to check to see if sometime between April, 2019 (when Biden announced his candidacy) and the date of his “It Never Happened” statement –May 1, 2020 – anyone from the Biden campaign (or elsewhere) visited the National Archives and accessed his Senate records.
But wait…, there’s more….
Noteworthy as well is the fact that his “It Never Happened” statement fails to alert readers that within the National Archives agency hierarchy there is the “Federal Records Center Program.” Quoting from its “Congressional Records Storage” mission statement: “The Federal Records Centers Program provides temporary storage for inactive records and personal papers accumulated by Senators and Representatives during their terms in Congress. This service is provided to Members as a courtesy, to ensure that their papers receive the proper care and protection. The papers are the property of the individual legislator and must be removed from the facility 90 days after the Member leaves office.” (Emphasis added).
The mission statement also discloses that, in addition to secure archiving of the documents, the Federal Records Center provides for the “prompt retrieval of stored documents.” This seems clearly to indicate that the documents are cataloged and/or indexed into some record or electronic database. And if that index or database remains with the agency after a particular Representative removes his/her documents, perhaps a word-search of that index or database might yield relevant information…, unless the index or database is itself deleted upon removal. But that couldn’t happen…, could it? The Deep State would not allow that…, would it?
Accordingly – and for the sake of argument only – if, as Biden claims, the only place where Reade’s complaint could be is in the National Archives, but if somehow it got “misfiled” with his Federal Records Center papers – inadvertently, of course… how dare you think otherwise? – instead of with the permanent records of the Office of Fair Employment Practices…, well, then…, golly…, maybe within the 90-day “window” allowed for ex-Senators to remove the documents, he or his minions did just that: they removed all of the documents, including ones that had been “misfiled.” Oops.
If, in fact, an original “misfiled” Reade complaint was included in those documents, the likelihood is that it is now gone for good… unless Biden still has the removed records in boxes locked in a mini-storage unit in Bethesda or in his garage. Or somewhere…
As for the Biden Senate documents now secreted at the University of Delaware, officials there have confirmed that Biden campaign operatives accessed the papers sometime “in the Spring of 2019.” Biden formally announced his presidential candidacy on April 25, 2019, roughly one month into the Spring of 2019. Hmmmm…. might any “problematic” letters, memos, emails or other relevant notations of activities, issues or “problems” have been found there…, and then “rectified?”
Biden continues to contend that the Delaware documents do not contain any personnel information but do contain information which he wishes to keep confidential, as for example, any discussions or communications he might have had with…, wait for it…, wait for it: Vladimir Putin. Yes, he referenced discussions with Putin.
If those discussions or notes regarding Putin occurred while he was Vice-President, that is one thing. If they occurred when he was still a Senator, that is quite another thing. Can you say “Logan Act?”
Biden’s “defense” of a claimed need to preserve confidentiality is nonsense. As Mika Brzezinski repeatedly pointed out to him during the Morning Joe interview, a digital word search of the Delaware document database restricted to the terms “Tara,” “Reade,” “complaint” or “Office of Fair Employment Practices” is all that would be needed. Moreover, the search could probably be done in less than a minute, 15 seconds for each term. Computers are really fast these days.
Bottom line: Joe Biden is not even close to emerging from the woods on the Tara Reade Challenge. Granted, Reade has her own problems supporting her assertions, including giving an explanation of why she did not keep (or demand) a copy of her 1993 complaint. In addition, why did she wait until 2020 to file a formal police report? Still, if the Democrats’ mantra during the Kavanaugh hearings is to be equally applied (fat chance), Tara Reade’s allegations are “presumptively true.”
Finally, the icing on the cake is the recommendation by the Gray Trollop that a thorough inventory and review of the Delaware documents be undertaken. True to its one-angstrom-unit-thick façade of objectivity, the editorial board of the Trollop recommends that the task be assigned to an “unbiased, apolitical panel, put together by the D.N.C., and chosen to foster as much trust in its findings as possible.”
Raise your hand if you think that any panel assembled by the Democrat National Committee would be “unbiased” and “apolitical” on an issue of this nature. On the other hand, realizing that even if he succeeds in weathering the Tara Reade challenge, Biden has about as much chance of defeating President Trump in November as your humble servant has of shot-putting a locomotive 100 yards, perhaps this is one way of neutralizing him before the DNC convention so that someone else can jump in…. Michelle Obama…; Bernie Sanders…; Hillary Clinton…?
Nah… that’s tinfoil hat stuff… even the Deep State/DNC cabal would never consider anything that mendacious… or vile… or mean. Would they… would they? Yes, Virginia, this could get interesting very quickly.