Anita Hill, who testified before the Joe Biden-led Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991 that then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her, said Thursday that she was not satisfied with a recent conversation she had with Biden about his conduct.
“I cannot be satisfied by simply saying I’m sorry for what happened to you,” Hill told The New York Times. “I will be satisfied when I know there is real change and real accountability and real purpose.”
Paraphrasing Hill, the Times reported: “She said she cannot support Mr. Biden […] until he takes responsibility for what he did and is also troubled by the recent accusations of improper touching.”
“The focus on apology to me is one thing. But he needs to give an apology to the other women and to the American public because we know now how deeply disappointed Americans around the country were about what they saw,” Hill said. “And not just women. There are women and men now who have just really lost confidence in our government to respond to the problem of gender violence.”
The former vice president has struggled to respond to women who have said he made them uncomfortable by his close physical contact, and he has struggled even more to answer for his treatment of Hill in the ’90s.
Describing Biden and Hill’s conversation last month, a spokesperson for the newly minted presidential candidate told the Times: “They had a private discussion where he shared with her directly his regret for what she endured and his admiration for everything she has done to change the culture around sexual harassment in this country.”
That echoed a statement Biden made himself on the hearing he presided over regarding Hill’s allegations.
“To this day I regret I couldn’t come up with a way to get her the kind of hearing she deserved, given the courage she showed by reaching out to us,” Biden said last month.