Lucy Flores, a Nevada state legislator who this week accused former Vice President Joe Biden of inappropriately touching and kissing her at a campaign stop in 2014, told CNN Sunday morning that she came forward because she wants Biden to "change his behavior" and "acknowledge it was wrong."
LUCY FLORES: Yes, of course, I want him to change his behavior. And I want him to acknowledge it was wrong.
I want this to be a bigger discussion about how there is no accountability structure within our political space, either for instances in which women feel that there was inappropriate behavior or more serious instances and allegations of sexual assault, et cetera. We are not protected in politics.
Frankly, on a much larger scale, we also need to have a conversation about powerful men feeling that they have — that they have the right to invade a woman’s space whenever they’d this really is about women feeling like we have agency.
If we don’t want you to touch us, then don’t touch us. If there isn’t a personal relationship, if there isn’t a history there, if this is inappropriate. If this same situation occurred in a work setting and a CEO came up to a female staffer and did the exact same thing, that staffer would be able to complain to someone. That staffer would say, this was very weird and it made me feel very uncomfortable and he needs to stop doing this. If that CEO continued that behavior and that was a pattern and practice, that would be a sexual harassment claim.
There needs to be that level of accountability in our political system and also just generally speaking now as we move forward. Women should have agency in their own personal space and on their own bodies.
The Biden camp sent this statement Sunday morning:
“In my many years on the campaign trail and in public life, I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort. And not once - never - did I believe I acted inappropriately. If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully. 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.
I will also remain the strongest advocate I can be for the rights of women. I will fight to build on the work I’ve done in my career to end violence against women and ensure women are treated with the equality they deserve. I will continue to surround myself with trusted women advisers who challenge me to see different perspectives than my own. And I will continue to speak out on these vitally-important issues where there is much more progress to be made and crucial fights that must be waged and won.”