Michigan Democrat Governor Gretchen Whitmer supported Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser Christine Blasey Ford in 2018 but defended the Democrats’ presumptive nominee on Sunday when she was asked about sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden.
The allegations against Biden are leveled by Tara Reade, who said she was a staff assistant for Biden in 1993 when he was in the Senate.
Gov. Whitmer, who has spoken publicly about being raped as a college freshman, said at a 2016 Detroit sexual assault summit that she wanted to create a system where accusers are “believed, period.”
“When we shine a light on it, we change the focus of the discussion and give women faith in a system that’s improving,” Whitmer said. “With each part of the discussion you’re having here this week, we help create a system that tells women if they come forward, they’re going to be believed, period.”
During the confirmation process for Brett Kavanaugh, Whitmer had tweeted on September 27, 2018, the day Dr. Ford testified, that she believed Ford’s account. “I believe Dr. Ford,” she wrote.
Now that she is a possible Democratic vice presidential contender, Gov. Whitmer appeared agitated when pressed by host Jake Tapper over the sexual assault allegations leveled at Joe Biden, during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union”. Continued Below
Asked why she believes Joe Biden and not Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Gov. Whitmer said, “You know Jake, as a survivor and as a feminist, I’ll say this: we need to give people an opportunity to tell their story, then we have a duty to vet it.”
“And just because you’re a survivor, doesn’t mean that every claim is equal. It means we give them the ability to make their case. And the other side is as well to make a judgment that is informed. I have read a lot about this current allegation. I know Joe Biden and I’ve watched his defense. And there’s not a pattern that goes into this,” Whitmer claimed.
“And I think for these reasons, I’m very comfortable that Joe Biden is who he says he is. And you know what? That’s all I’m gonna say about it. I really resent the fact that every time a case comes up, all of us survivors have to weigh in. It is reopening wounds. And you know, it is take us at our word, ask us for our opinion, and let’s move on,” she vented. Video Below
Whitmer went on to say: “I’m just sharing some of the simmering anger that we survivors have every time that you know, we’ve got to confront this from someone else’s behavior that we weren’t [a part of], you know, the reality of the moment.”
“What I think is this: we owe it to every woman who has a story to listen to that story and then to vet that story, ask the questions, and be critical thinkers. And then, make a judgment based on all of those pieces. I’ve done that in this instance. And I’ll tell you this, I don’t believe that it’s consistent with the Joe Biden that I know. And I do believe Joe, and I support Joe Biden,” she added.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s tweet in 2018 on Dr. Ford:
I believe Dr. Ford
— Governor Gretchen Whitmer (@GovWhitmer) September 27, 2018
Gov. Whitmer’s official remarks on Joe Biden:
“We owe it to every woman who has a story to, to listen to that story and then vet that story… I don’t believe that it’s consistent with the Joe Biden I know and I do believe Joe Biden,” Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer reacts to Tara Reade's allegation against Biden. #CNNSOTU pic.twitter.com/5h0fvzgV4K
— State of the Union (@CNNSotu) May 3, 2020