The former Senate staffer accusing Joe Biden of sexual assault is now being represented by a prominent lawyer who was a donor to Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election.
As The Associated Press reported, accuser Tara Reade is represented by attorney Douglas Wigdor, who said he is not being paid for his work. Wigdor, who denied having a political motivation for his work with Reade, said he wants to help her find competent representation after weeks of having difficulty finding a lawyer.
“We have decided to take this matter on because every survivor has the right to competent counsel,” Wigdor’s law firm said in a statement.
Wigdor added that he believed there was “politics” involved in Reade’s difficulty finding a law firm to represent her.
Reade has claimed that Biden sexually assaulted her in a secluded area of the U.S. Senate building in 1993, while she was working in his office. She initially came forward last year with a group of other women who accused Biden of unwanted touching and said at the time that the incidents were not of a sexual nature. Reade this year said she was not ready to tell the full story but has since delved into details of what she claimed happened during her time working in his office.
Biden has denied the allegation, saying it never happened and calling on the National Archives to release all information related to a claim that Reade allegedly filed against him. The secretary of the U.S. Senate said earlier this week that it is not able to release the information that Biden’s campaign requested, noting that if she had filed a report, it would be confidential. Biden’s campaign responded, asking if the office could confirm whether the complaint exists or not.
Reade said that her complaint may not have explicitly identified sexual assault or harassment.
Wigdor has assumed a national stature through his work representing victims of sexual misconduct. As The Associated Press reported, he represented six accusers of disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and also represented Fox News employees claiming gender and racial discrimination against the network. The clients included Juliette Huddy, one of the women who accused host Bill O’Reilly of pursuing a sexual relationship with her and allegedly retaliating when she declined.
The report noted that Wigdor has been a Trump supporter, giving close to $55,000 in campaign contributions in 2016. He has also supported some Democrats in New York, including Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Attorney General Letitia James.