AP NEWS

Joe Biden accused by second woman of unwanted touching

April 1, 2019

A Connecticut woman came forward Monday to say that former Vice President Joseph R. Biden engaged in unwanted, inappropriate contact with her, grabbing her head and rubbing noses with her.

In an interview with the Hartford Courant, Amy Lappos said she encountered Mr. Biden, who was then vice president, at a 2009 political fundraiser in Greenwich.

“It wasn’t sexual, but he did grab me by the head,” Ms. Lappos said. “He put his hand around my neck and pulled me in to rub noses with me. When he was pulling me in, I thought he was going to kiss me on the mouth.”

She first posted about the alleged episode on the Connecticut Women in Politics after Friday’s allegation by former Nevada state legislator Lucy Flores, who accused Mr. Biden of putting his hands on her shoulders, smelling her hair and kissing the back of her head at a 2014 campaign rally in Las Vegas.

Ms. Lappos, 43, said she was working at the time as an aide for Rep. Jim Himes, Connecticut Democrat, but that he was not in the room when the incident occurred.

“I never filed a complaint, to be honest, because he was the vice president. I was a nobody,” Ms. Lappos said. “There’s absolutely a line of decency. There’s a line of respect. Crossing that line is not grandfatherly. It’s not cultural. It’s not affection. It’s sexism or misogyny.”

A Connecticut woman says then-Vice President Joe Biden touched her inappropriately at a Greenwich fundraiser in 2009 https://t.co/jKR70XAsOV Hartford Courant (@hartfordcourant) April 1, 2019

Himes spokesman Patrick Malone told The Washington Times that Ms. Lappos worked for the congressman at that time.

The Biden camp issued a statement saying he had no recollection of the incident. In a second statement Sunday, Mr. Biden said he had offered “countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort” during his years on the campaign trail, but that he never believed her acted inappropriately.

“If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully,” Mr. Biden said. “But it was never my intention. I may not recall these moments the same way, and I may be surprised at what I hear. But we have arrived at an important time when women feel they can and should relate their experiences, and men should pay attention. And I will.”

His campaign offered no comment on the specific Lappos allegations, according to the newspaper.