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Tara Reade’s lawyer drops her as a client

POLITICO logo POLITICO 3 days ago By Natasha Korecki
a woman posing for a picture: Tara Reade. © Donald Thompson/AP Photo Tara Reade.

Trigger Warning: This article contains information and details about alleged sexual assault and/or violence, which may be upsetting to some readers.

Resources to help survivors of sexual assault include the National Sex Assault Hotline (800-656-4673), and The Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network (RAINN) online hotline.

Tara Reade’s attorney announced Friday that he will no longer represent her as a client.

In a statement, Douglas Wigdor, who has represented victims of sexual assault in the past, said the decision did not have to do with the question of whether Joe Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993, as Reade has alleged.

The announcement came a day after defense lawyers in California said they were reviewing whether she misrepresented her credentials in past cases where she testified as an expert witness.

Wigdor asserted he made the decision earlier in the week.

“Our Firm no longer represents Tara Reade. Our decision, made on May 20, is by no means a reflection on whether then-Senator Biden sexually assaulted Ms. Reade,” Wigdor wote. “On that point, our view — which is the same view held by the majority of Americans, according to a Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll — has not changed.”

Wigdor, a 2016 donor to President Trump and the Republican National Committee who has also represented accusers of Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein, reiterated his belief that Reade was subjected to unfair media scrutiny.

“Much of what has been written about Ms. Reade is not probative of whether then-Senator Biden sexually assaulted her, but rather is intended to victim-shame and attack her credibility on unrelated and irrelevant matters,” he wrote. “We genuinely wish Ms. Reade well and hope that she, as a survivor, is treated fairly. We have and will continue to represent survivors regardless of their alleged predator’s status or politics.”

POLITICO reported Thursday that California defense attorneys are considering challenging the convictions of their clients amid questions about whether Reade misrepresented her expert witness credentials under oath.

Reade testified in at least two court cases that she graduated from Antioch University in Seattle with a bachelor’s degree. The school, however, said she only attended for three quarters and did not graduate. When Reade offered a different explanation on Thursday evening, saying she had a special arrangement with a former chancellor using a different name, university officials told POLITICO that was not true. CNN first reported questions about the inconsistencies in her educational background.

Reade also appears to have embellished her role in Biden’s office.

Reade has been the subject of harsh criticism from former acquaintances in California who said she took advantage of them to extract money, skip rent payments or walk out on other bills.

Resources to help survivors of sexual assault include the National Sex Assault Hotline (800-656-4673), and The Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network (RAINN) online hotline.

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